As the Chicago Tribune reports, Chicago’s murder rate is up 18% over the same time frame last year. 62 people were killed in the month of July alone, and there were several high profile shootings, such as the Taste of Chicago shootings or the murder of a cop with his own gun. In the overwhelming majority of these murders, criminals used handguns, despite 20+ year long ban on handgun ownership in Chicago. Clearly, the criminals are ignoring the handgun ban.
As I’ve mentioned before, criminals ignore gun control laws. This should come as no surprise, as a person who is willing to commit murder will also be willing to violate a relatively minor gun possession law. Whether such criminals get their guns on the black market, steal guns from the police, or find some other creative way of getting guns, such criminals will be armed. The law abiding citizens, who were not going to commit a crime in the first place, are then left with no guns – making them easier targets for the criminals. This phenomenon is not unique to Chicago. Localities ranging, from suburban Oak Park, to the District of Columbia, have banned handguns only to see handgun related violence increase as a result of gun control laws. Making matters worse, handgun bans result in the prosecution of innocent citizens who acted to defend themselves and their children from home invaders. Chicago, Oak Park, and Illinois as a whole would do well to allow their citizens to defend themselves, rather than become crime statistics.