By: Teresa Mull
USA Today has acknowledged a fact gun owners have known forever – that more guns mean less crime. An armed society is a polite society. Guns are the great equalizer. And so forth.
GPM reported last month that Americans recorded the second most number of gun purchases ever in March 2020, the highest number belonging to the month Barack Obama was first sworn-in as president.
Now, The Washington Examiner reports:
As in March, when the sweep of the virus shocked the nation, the FBI today said April background checks for gun sales and concealed carry permits hit a new record of 2,911,128 background checks, a surge of 576,879 over April 2019.
USA Today decided to fact check whether the surge in guns correlated with a decrease in crime, and concluded:
Crime rates in cities and counties across the country have rapidly fallen amid the pandemic, according to a recent analysis by USA TODAY. Since March 15, arrests have fallen about 47% compared to the average from Feb. 2 to 29, while the number of traffic stops barely registers in some localities.
Crime has significantly declined while the sale of firearms has risen over the past month in the United States. Both trends appear to result from the coronavirus pandemic, which has simultaneously raised the nation’s anxiety while emptying its streets. We rate this claim TRUE because it is supported by our research.
According to the paper’s analysis, the fact that many people are staying at home and off the streets “where most crime normally occurs” has helped limit crime – not that criminals are afraid to violate stay-at-home orders, or that home invasions have not occurred.
Whether USA TODAY remembers its findings when legislatures are back in session pushing gun control remains to be seen.
Teresa Mull is editor of Gunpowder Magazine. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.