Yet another piece of evidence has arrived demonstrating the ability of recognized gun rights to drive down crime. Researchers Srikant Devaraj of Ball State University and Pankaj Patel of Villanova University have published a study in Applied Economics Letters examining crime reports in Chicago and Philadelphia from January 2006 to December 2015. Their clear conclusion was that property crime decreased in Chicago following passage of the right-to-carry or “shall issue” law in 2013, while Philadelphia demonstrated no such effect.
The evidence shows a significant and sustained reduction in property crime once Chicago residents no longer had to justify their need for a concealed-carry permit. Devaraj and Patel offered some theories on why the change in law drove down crime, one of which was that concealed carry “may influence the opportunity cost for committing … crimes, as criminals may weigh gains … against higher risk (with the possibility of a victim carrying a firearm).”
As often as academia is a refuge for anti-gun thought, it is always refreshing to see careful research that supports what we already know.