New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is spending millions to attack Sen. Kelly Ayotte for opposing gun-control legislation Bloomberg likes. Bloomberg says tougher gun laws will reduce gun homicides. Has he ever compared his city’s gun murder rate with New Hampshire’s?
New York City’s gun homicide rate has fallen to 4 per 100,000, very good for a large American city. Boston’s rate is 6.2, Washington, D.C.’s 19, and New Orleans’ a stunning 62.1, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data compiled in January by Atlantic Cities.
New Hampshire has about 1.3 million people, double Boston’s population but a sixth of New York City’s 8.2 million. New Hampshire’s gun homicide rate was .53 percent last year. Manchester, a city of more than 100,000 people, had just two homicides last year, both by gun, for a rate a little less than half of New York City’s.
It is well known that places such as New Hampshire, with less restrictive gun laws, have far lower gun homicide rates than places like New York City or Washington, D.C., which have very restrictive gun laws. It never seems to have occurred to Bloomberg or his fans that the difference in gun homicide rates is largely a product of culture (including gang activity), not gun control. But it is a lot easier to call for more gun control than to do the much harder work of dealing with cultural decay and mental illness.