Expert Refutes FBI Data On ‘Active Shooter Incidents’

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A study conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) documenting “active shooter incidents” is “politically biased,” says an expert in the field of firearms and crime.

Last fall, the FBI released a document entitled “A Study of Active Shooter Incidents in the United States Between 2000 and 2013.” The study argues there have been 160 active shooter incidents recorded in that time.

FBI

FBI

FBI

FBI

 

These are some of the key facts from the report:

  • An average of 11.4 incidents occurred annually.
  • An average of 6.4 incidents occurred in the first 7 years studied, and an average of 16.4 occurred in the last 7 years.
  • 70 percent of the incidents occurred in either a commerce/business or educational environment
  • Shootings occurred in 40 of 50 states and the District of Columbia
  • 60 percent of the incidents ended before police arrived.

But John Lott, president of the Crime Prevention Research Center, disagreed with the FBI’s data. “The FBI put out a clearly incorrect set of numbers on public shootings shortly before the November election last year,” Lott told Fox News.

I have been reading FBI reports for 30 years and I have never seen anything like this.It is one thing for the Bureau of Justice Statistics or the National Institute of Justice to put out politically biased studies, but there has always been a Chinese wall separating the FBI raw data collection from political pressures.

Lott released a paper of his own the following month countering the FBI’s findings entitled “The FBI’s Misrepresentation of the Change in Mass Public Shootings.” In the abstract, Lott challenges the annual growth rate of mass shootings, which the report says is 16 percent.

“When a longer period of time is examined (1977 through the first half of 2014),” he writes, “deaths from Mass Public Shootings show only a slight, statistically insignificant, increase – an annual increase of less than one percent.”

The FBI’s misleadingly includes cases that aren’t mass shootings – cases where no one or only one person was killed in a public place. While the FBI assures people that it ‘captured the vast majority of incidents falling within the search criteria,’ their report missed 20 shootings where at least two people were killed in a public place.

“Most of these missing cases took place early on, biasing their results towards showing an increase,” Lott added.

h/t: Fox News

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This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

Is This Texas Republican Enabling Police Brutality?

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At a time when the entirety of Western civilization is focused on eliminating police corruption and ending the suffering that unlawful police departments inflict upon citizens, a Texas State Representative, Jason Villalba (R-Dallas), is ramping up his crusade against civil liberties, seeking to diminish public oversight of police action.

This month, Representative Villalba introduced a bill that would prohibit:

  • filming, recording, photographing, or documenting the officer within 25 feet of the officer; or
  • filming, recording, photographing, or documenting the officer within 100 feet of the officer while carrying a handgun

(thereby criminalizing basic rights enumerated in the first and second amendments to the US Constitution.)

Villalba has included language in the bill that provides an exception for government-defined “members of the press,” mimicking the failed attempt by California Democrat Dianne Feinstein to curtail free speech with her amendment to the 2013 Free Flow of Information Act.

Activists within the Texas Liberty Movement indicate that Viallba’s bill will be opposed in the House, although no legislators have gone on record to confirm this yet.

Critics of the bill say that it is a continuance of a frightening trend in government to criminalize lawful behavior, limit human rights, and eliminate citizen oversight.

On Friday, Murdoch Pitzgatti, the President and co-founder of Come and Take It Texas, said:

When filming anything in public becomes illegal, the First Amendment has died. Where the First Amendment is restricted, the Second Amendment will be used to remedy the situation.

Pitzgatti added: “Under this bill, concealed handgun license holders must stay even further away while filming. We will not follow an unconstitutional law, especially one that singles out law-abiding citizens that have been vetted and have undergone extensive background checks and treats them like criminals.”

The bill stands in marked contrast to the efforts made by Texas citizens, including police and lawmakers, to increase oversight of police actions through the use of body cameras and other measures. Similar initiatives, put forth on the national level, have received nearly universal support in the wake of Ferguson and other highly publicized incidents involving police shootings.

Like Feinstein, Villalba would have the legislature ignore the ways in which technology has enabled journalism to evolve, narrowly defining “journalist” in such a way that would criminalize the work done by many of today’s most powerful and influential members of press.

Sadly, these attempted end-runs around the First Amendment are far from isolated occurrences. Over the past decade, a multitude of evidence has surfaced that reveals an increasing animosity towards the press on the part of government–though this animosity has not gone unchecked.

In 2011, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit ruled unanimously in favor of Simon Glik, who was arrested and charged with illegal wiretapping for making a video recording of police actions in Boston. Sarah Wunsch, a staff attorney for ACLU Massachusetts, called the case “…a resounding victory for the First Amendment right to openly record police officers carrying out their duties in a public place.”

The right to a free press is an American principle that predates the founding of the republic. In an Appeal to the Inhabitants of Quebec (1774), the First Continental Congress wrote:

The last right we shall mention regards the freedom of the press. The importance of this consists, besides the advancement of truth, science, morality, and arts in general, in its diffusion of liberal sentiments on the administration of Government, its ready communication of thoughts between subjects, and its consequential promotion of union among them, whereby oppressive officers are shamed or intimidated into more honorable and just modes of conducting affairs.

Fifteen years later, the people’s right to criticize government specifically compelled the Founders to include within the Bill of Rights the statement that “Congress shall make no law … abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press.”

Americans have long cherished the right to a free press–and rightfully so. Efforts by those in government to flout this basic premise of our constitutional republic clearly recalls the Nazis’ Reichstag Fire Decree, which in 1933 made criticism of the government a criminal offense in Germany and paved the way for the terror of national socialism.

But what terrorizes minions of big government, like Jason Villalba, is a free people exercising their natural rights unimpeded by regulation.

Another highly publicized bill filed by Villalba this session, under the guise of protecting religious liberty, would amend the Texas constitution to allow state and local governments to “burden” a person’s free exercise of religion if “the burden is necessary to further a compelling governmental interest…” Villlalba has since folded under the pressure coming from both sides of the issue and withdrawn support for his own bill, leaving Representative Matt Krause (R-Fort Worth) to pick up the slack.

Last year in US News & World Report, Jason Stverak wrote:

The term “public servant” has become the vogue euphemism that career politicians and government employees use for themselves, but it more aptly applies to people working for the common good and the betterment of their community. Journalists fit under this umbrella because they are a check on those in power, and our government should be applauding anyone who puts in the legwork to uncover the truth instead of drawing arbitrary lines to hinder them.

Take note, Villalba; that’s the way real Texans think.

The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by WesternJournalism.com.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

Police Thankful Armed Passerby Was On Scene During Violent Barber Shop Outburst

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A 40-year-old suspect is dead following an altercation inside of a Philadelphia barber shop Sunday. According to local authorities, however, the death toll could have been much higher if not for the quick reaction of an armed man nearby.

The incident began after two men began to argue, one teenage eyewitness reported.

“They were taking it too far,” Yusaf Mack explained, “and one of the barbers said, ‘Chill out.’”

At that point, a suspect reached for his firearm and began firing toward the business’ clients and staff.

“I heard gunshots,” Mack recalled, “so I ducked and I ran.”

One individual, however, heard the commotion as he walked by the barber shop and pulled out his own gun to intervene. The passerby shot at the gunman, striking him in the chest. After being transported to a local hospital, the suspect died as a result of his injuries.

Mack explained neither he nor the armed defender stuck around in the face of such an obvious threat.

“He just shot him,” the witness explained, “and when he was done shooting he ran.”

As for the armed man responsible for ending the incident, police confirm he turned himself in a short time later. A preliminary investigation indicates the shooting was justified, and there is no indication he will face any charges.

In fact, Philadelphia Police Capt. Frank Llewellyn lauded the individual’s reaction.

“The person who responded was a legal gun permit carrier,” he confirmed. “He responded and I guess he saved a lot of people in there.”

h/t: Bearing Arms

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This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

Lefty ‘Journalist’ Suggests Taking Guns From All White Males

Twitter/@andreagrimes

In a series of recent Twitter posts, self-described feminist and political reporter Andrea Grimes offered a controversial approach toward the ostensible goal of reducing gun violence. Her initial post accompanied a link to a biographical article about Ryan Giroux, the suspect in a deadly shooting spree this week in Arizona.

“Suggestion: we don’t have to vaporize all the guns,” Grimes wrote. “Let’s just vaporize white men’s guns.”

Before anyone else had an opportunity to respond, she expounded.

“White guys cannot be trusted to use guns responsibly,” she alleged. “It’s time to stop giving guns to white guys.”

Though she originally claimed there would be no need to “vaporize” every firearm if white males were prohibited from owning them, she later clarified that this step is only the beginning.

“I mean, it’s time to stop giving guns to everybody,” she wrote, “but we can start with the white guys.”

Continuing her diatribe against the specific demographic, Grimes noted the added “bonus” of collecting tears from white men “for research and resource purposes while they line up to surrender their weapons.”

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Twitter

While acknowledging her comments could be construed as biased against both whites and men, she attempted to cut off any such criticism by pointing out that she is “married to a white guy,” implying that it is “literally impossible” for her to be a racist or misandrist.

Her reasoning bears striking similarity to an excuse used by some – and dismissed by many others – to deflect accusations of racism.

Twitter

Twitter

h/t: Daily Caller

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This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

Law Enforcement Boss Admits Gun Rights Activists ‘Schooled’ Him On His Concealed Carry Position

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Though trained in proper firearms use and expected to face potentially deadly situations on a daily basis, law enforcement professionals are far from unanimous in their advice for citizens preparing for their own defense. As retired police officer – and current head of the Maryland State Police Licensing Division – Jack McCauley proved, a difference of opinion can occur even within an individual.

Prior to his retirement, McCauley was an adamant opponent to proposals that would give Marylanders access to concealed carry permits. His entire position changed, however, after he took the initiative to educate himself even further on the motivation gun owners have to secure such permits and the impact concealed carry laws have on crime.

He addressed his change of heart recently in remarks before members of the Maryland Senate earlier this month, offering a candid overview of his previously held opinion. Scroll down for video of his address.

“These crazy people,” he said, “these Second Amendment activists, they’re all going to want these – they’re trophies. They’re going to want these permits; it’s going to be scary. Dangerous people are going to be getting guns. Just any Joe Citizen is going to get a gun.”

Upon further investigation, however, McCauley admitted that his initial fears were unfounded. He recalled conversations with gun rights groups and the impact they had on his internal revision.

“When I met them,” he explained, “they schooled me. They not only schooled me – they embarrassed me. They humbled me. I was wrong. I was completely wrong.”

Unsatisfied with merely hearing from concealed carry supporters, McCauley said he committed himself to attaining a thorough understanding of the issue.

“When I say I studied it,” he said, “I mean I slept two hours a night studying it; and I found out some staggering information about handgun permits and what was going on. My fears were not justified.”

See McCauley’s comments in their entirety below.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom