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Posted at 5:00 PM ET, 09/27/2010

Where D.C. gets its guns

By Martin Austermuhle

A report, published today by the coalition Mayors Against Illegal Guns, finds that 98.2 percent of all guns used for crime in the District come from other states, with Virginia, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia topping the list of gun exporters to our city. The finding is part of a broader report (PDF) assessing gun trafficking in the U.S. and its effect on various cities and states.

Based on an analysis of government statistics, the coalition's report claims that in 2009, 10 states accounted for 49 percent of guns that crossed state lines before being used in a crime. More controversially, the report argues that there exists a correlation between a state's gun laws and the likelihood that guns will be trafficked out and used in crime. In short, the easier it is to get a gun, the more likely it'll be that the gun will go somewhere else and be used for ill means.

While Virginia has been one of the country's highest gun exporters since 2006 (it ranked second every year until 2009, when it dropped a spot to third), when controlled for population, the Old Dominion ranks seventh in the amount of guns that originate there but end up being used in crimes elsewhere. The national average for crime guns exported per 100,000 people is 14.1; Virginia comes in at 32.4. (National leader Mississippi hits 50.3.) The District comes in dead last, exporting only 2.2 guns per 100,000 residents.

So what makes certain states better places for gun traffickers?

[Continue reading Martin Austermuhle's post here at DCist.]

Martin Austermuhle blogs at DCist. The Local Blog Network is a group of bloggers from around the D.C. region who have agreed to make regular contributions to All Opinions Are Local.

By Martin Austermuhle  | September 27, 2010; 5:00 PM ET
Categories:  D.C., HotTopic, Local blog network, crime, guns  
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Interesting hypothesis. So you say that these other states "export" guns into the city as if there are regular shipments of guns by rail or truck. So, it's not like the people of DC are traveling to these other states and buying guns. It's sort of like the drug problem. If the Mexican cartles were not "exporting" their drugs, there would be no drugs in the U.S.!!

So gun users are sort of like drug users?

The people who carry and use guns in DC treat guns like their wallet - they don't leave home without it. That's why you have shootings at weddings and funerals in DC. A wedding or a funeral is a firefight waiting to happen. Once again the the Post and it's writers avoid the obvious for PC reasons - it's not the guns, it's the people. I am for gun control by the way, but at some point you have put the responsibility where it lies. Even if we do a better job at gun control, where there is a will there is a way. Many of the communities in DC choose to live the way they do and guns are part of that choice.

Posted by: dmt3 | September 29, 2010 10:31 AM | Report abuse

Gun control does not work. Blaming other states does not work either. When you have a politicaly correct everyone is a victim, certain groups get a pass you have high crime. How many times do you read when they catch a murder suspect they have dozens of felonies including gun violations and you wonder what was this criminal doing on the street in the first place. No you have to install into these clowns that there are consequences for your actions, that Prison is not three hots and a cot with your brothers. You also have to instill into the community that they are victimizing themselves by covering for these animals.

Remember 60,000,000 gun owners did not commit a crime today nor will they tommorow. TO punish a large group of law abiding citizens for the actions of a few law breakers is of course the way of the left but let a little common sense prevail and go after the criminals instead.

Posted by: Pilot1 | September 29, 2010 12:41 PM | Report abuse

It's no surprise Post editors changed the headline on this one, since the original blog entry is titled "Virginia, Maryland Top List of Gun Exporters to D.C."

No kidding. Does that finding require a PhD. in the social sciences and a grant from NYC Mayor Bloomberg? Or just a blog and a keyboard?

Once again, guns don't get to DC through osmosis; *people* bring them into the District, unsurprisingly from the two states that abut the District, having stolen or bought them there, notwithstanding the very different gun control laws of those two jurisdictions.

On a per capita basis, many more guns recovered at DC crimes scenes were legally bought in MARYLAND, not Virginia, despite the allegedly much more lax Virginia laws. Go figure. Maybe frequency of gun theft, importation and violent criminal use has more to do with the particular sorts of people doing those things than it does with the laws in effect in the state?

Yes, people. Moral agents.

Once weapons are brought here by some people, they use them against other, similar people (with sometimes fatal results, but usually not). *Which* people do these things, you may wonder...but probably not.

Perhaps some more reporting and editorializing in that direction would be a little more appropriate?

Posted by: confounded | September 30, 2010 9:43 PM | Report abuse

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