A report from an anti-gun advocacy group on the deaths linked to concealed carry permit holders meant to shock the public about legalized "killers" is actually making the case that those licensed to carry are safer than police with guns.
The report from the Violence Policy Center said that since 2007, 1,108 deaths have been linked to concealed-carry holders. Most, 399, were suicides.
VPC Legislative Director Kristen Rand said, "Concealed carry permit holders are supposed to be the ‘good guys with guns,' but our research shows that far too often the opposite is true. Permit holders don't stop mass shootings, they commit them. They don't help protect law enforcement officers, they kill them."
But when compared to the murder numbers in Chicago during that time, 5,343, the national rate of deaths linked to concealed carry holders is about one-fifth.
And when compared to the number of those who have permits, 16 million, the percentage is tiny. States don't require permits to carry handguns.
Pro-permit and anti-permit groups have been fighting it out for years, but the public is applying for their concealed-carry documents more and more.
"The anti-gun lobby and its front groups like the VPC will apparently stop at nothing to destroy Americans' Second Amendment freedoms and that includes releasing false and misleading reports such as this," said Tim Schmidt, president and founder of the U.S. Concealed Carry Association.
"This is truly shameful because the reality is that study after study has shown the exact opposite which is that concealed carry permit holders are among the most law-abiding and responsible members of our society. Instead of trying to scare the American people with phony statistics, the VPC should be apologizing to the millions of good, hard-working Americans who have taken the initiative to protect their families, friends and neighbors," he added.
Paul Bedard, the Washington Examiner's "Washington Secrets" columnist, can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org