Detroit’s police chief has caused a stir by calling for private citizens to be armed. Chief James Craig stated on Thursday that armed citizens deter crime and called for more law-abiding citizens to exercise their Second Amendment Rights.
Saddled with debt, poverty, and high crime rates, Detroit is a city on the verge of collapse. As its population continues its sharp decline, capital is also drained from the city. Last year it became the first major US municipality to declare bankruptcy. As poverty increases, crime inevitably rises.
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In 2012, the local police union warned against visitors to the Motor City, saying Detroit was “War-Like.” The Detroit Police Officers Association warned to enter the city “at your own risk,” and that the police were badly understaffed. DPOA Attorney Donato Iorio said in regards to short staffing that “police officers can’t protect you if they’re not there.”
Chief Craig’s assertion that concealed weapons carried by lawful citizens reduces crime puts him at odds with most major city police departments in the country. It was Craig’s previous service as police chief in Maine which he says changed his perspective. “I changed my orientation real quick. Maine is one of the safest places in America. Clearly, suspects knew that good Americans were armed.”
Gun Control advocates were not without rebuke over Craig’s statements. The Director of the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence Robyn Thomas in San Francisco stated that “the more guns in any situation, the higher the likelihood of them harming either the owner, or people who have access to them.”
While Thomas’s remarks echo typical liberal talking points on gun control, the city of Detroit has seen 73 justifiable homicides since 2011. Most of the incidents are citizens using firearms to defend themselves from crimes. That 73 people who, in a city where the police warn they cannot protect you, are likely alive today because they had the ability to defend themselves.