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Bloomberg Course: Policies Based on Selective Evidence, Anti-Gun Preferences

Friday, May 31, 2019

Bloomberg Course: Policies Based on Selective Evidence, Anti-Gun Preferences

Week Three of the Bloomberg School of Public Health Coursera program, “Reducing Gun Violence in America: Evidence for Change,” seemingly promised some substance. This week’s module is titled “Evidence-Based Policies to Prevent Gun Violence” but the threshold for what qualifies as “evidence-based” is subjective. As in, the Bloomberg team selects what qualifies as evidence and what should just be done even in the absence of evidence.

The presenters advocate for universal background checks, licenses or permits to purchase, and waiting periods. But, while pushing these measures, they admit that the evidence on the impact of background checks for private sales on gun homicides “has not found protective effects” and that “[t]he evidence of the impact on waiting periods on firearm homicide is inconclusive.”

Those are actual quotes from this week’s lessons. The Bloomberg School staff claim that a waiting period allows law enforcement more time to complete a background check…but background checks don’t stop after the third day (when a dealer can choose to proceed with a sale if the person has not been denied). Law enforcement continues to investigate the buyer and, if necessary, retrieves the firearm in the event that a prohibited person took possession of a firearm before the background check was complete. Investigators have up to 90 days to compete a background check – that’s far more than any proposed waiting period.

As we’ve pointed out repeatedly, so-called universal background checks would have no effect on criminals.

Since “universal” background checks don’t work on their own, Bloomberg acolytes argue for a licensing or permit to purchase system based on their research. The Rand Corporation included much of this same research in their review of gun-policy research, “The Science of Gun Policy,” and deemed licensing and permitting requirements to have an uncertain effect on both total homicides and firearm homicides because the evidence is inconclusive.

As in prior weeks, the Bloomberg team simply ignored research, sometimes conducted by their own staff members, that didn’t confirm their existing anti-gun biases. This week, a portion of the module focused on laws that prohibit individuals convicted of certain misdemeanors from possession firearms. Unsurprisingly, research conducted by the Center for Gun Policy and Research and UC Davis that found violent misdemeanor prohibitions and universal background checks have no effect was again excluded despite the authors claiming “very good evidence” supporting such prohibitions.

That is, within the body of evidence they’re willing to acknowledge.

One of the more interesting presentations this week was a panel discussion on the Consortium for Risk-Based Firearm Policy. The Executive Director of the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, Josh Horwitz, is lauded as a key figure behind the Consortium. Horwitz says during a discussion of extreme risk protection orders that advocates eventually “settled” on California to enact the first such legislation because “their legislature is somewhat full-time” and “they have legislative staff and really good legal counsel there.”

Surely, they didn’t pick California because lawmakers there have never met a gun control policy they didn’t like. Case in point: the microstamping law for which Horwitz claims credit. From his biography on the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence:

“For instance, in 2007, his research and advocacy were instrumental in enacting a first-of-its-kind microstamping law in California. The revolutionary technology allows law enforcement to trace guns from expended cartridge casings left at crime scenes.”

Except it doesn’t exist. The law exists, but the technology is unfeasible so the real result is that law-abiding gun owners in California simply don’t have the option to purchase newer and likely safer model firearms. They can only purchase older models grandfathered in under the microstamping law.

What else would one expect from anti-gun activists?

 

 

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Highly Touted Study Tests Non-Existent Policies, Uses Deceptive Data

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Monday, July 22, 2019

Highly Touted Study Tests Non-Existent Policies, Uses Deceptive Data

A study published in the journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics this week generated considerable media attention that focused on the purported finding and not the underlying research design:

Oregon: Initiative Filed to Restrict Self-Defense

Friday, July 19, 2019

Oregon: Initiative Filed to Restrict Self-Defense

On July 18th, Initiative Petition 40​ was filed in Oregon to restrict the Second Amendment rights of law abiding adults by imposing a broad, one-size-fits-all method of storing firearms.  This egregious attack on our freedoms uses virtually ...

NYC Makes Second Bid to Shake Off Supreme Court Scrutiny

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Monday, July 22, 2019

NYC Makes Second Bid to Shake Off Supreme Court Scrutiny

Apparently cognizant of the risks of pressing ahead with the defense of its nonsensical and extreme firearm law, New York City has now ramped up its arguments that the legal challenge to the law is ...

“Fact Checker:” Joe Biden’s “Gun Ban” Not a Gun Ban Because Some Guns Wouldn’t Be Banned

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Monday, July 15, 2019

“Fact Checker:” Joe Biden’s “Gun Ban” Not a Gun Ban Because Some Guns Wouldn’t Be Banned

Facebook has teamed up with what it calls “third-party fact-checkers” to punish users of its platform that post information embarrassing or inconvenient to the political outlook of its principals. Yet like most sources of what ...

Hollywood Fantasy v. Reality on Firearm Suppressors

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Monday, July 15, 2019

Hollywood Fantasy v. Reality on Firearm Suppressors

It’s no secret that Hollywood has a very loose relationship with reality.  The movie industry, after all, is based on fantasy and escapism, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing.  If someone wants to forget ...

Presidential Pretender Who Campaigned on Gun Control First to Call It Quits

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Monday, July 15, 2019

Presidential Pretender Who Campaigned on Gun Control First to Call It Quits

On Monday, Eric Swalwell became the first of the many pretenders for the Democrat presidential nomination to bow (or perhaps slink) out of the race. The U.S. Congressman from California’s 15th District had tried to distinguish himself from ...

California: Injunction Filed to Stop California Ammunition Sales Restrictions

Tuesday, July 23, 2019

California: Injunction Filed to Stop California Ammunition Sales Restrictions

On Monday, July 22, CRPA with support of NRA, filed a motion requesting an injunction against enforcement of California's recently implemented ammunition laws. The injunction is part of the case Rhode v. Becerra, filed in April of 2018, where lead Plaintiff ...

Guide To The Interstate Transportation Of Firearms

Gun Laws  

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Guide To The Interstate Transportation Of Firearms

CAUTION: Federal and state firearms laws are subject to frequent change. This summary is not to be considered as legal advice or a restatement of law.

NRA Statement On Virginia Special Session

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Tuesday, July 9, 2019

NRA Statement On Virginia Special Session

FAIRFAX, Va.–   The interim executive director of the National Rifle Association Institute for Legislative Action, Jason Ouimet, released the following statement today regarding the special session in Virginia:  "The National Rifle Association has a long ...

Virginia: Crime Commission Hearing Dates Set

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Virginia: Crime Commission Hearing Dates Set

As directed by the General Assembly during the July 9th special session, the Virginia State Crime Commission will be holding hearings on August 19th and 20th to evaluate Governor Ralph Northam’s proposed gun control bills. 

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Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.