Friday, December 03, 2004


According to University of California, Berkeley criminologist Franklin Zimring, the best way to survive a robbery is through "active compliance." In other words, do exactly what the criminal says, as quickly as possible. However, the statistics suggest otherwise. After examining data from the Department of Justice National Crime Victimization Survey from 1979 through 1987, Gary Kleck found that the best way to survive a criminal attack was to resist � with a gun.

Women were 2.5 times more likely to suffer serious injury if they offered no resistance than if they resisted with a gun. Having a gun made the crucial difference. Women who resisted without a gun were four times more likely to be seriously hurt than those who resisted with a gun. "In other words," writes John Lott in More Guns, Less Crime, "the best advice is to resist with a gun, but if no gun is available, it is better to offer no resistance than to fight."

In the case of men � no doubt, because of their greater physical strength � having a gun made considerably less difference in the success rate of their resistance and in the likelihood of their being injured. But it still proved advantageous. Men who offered no resistance turned out to be 1.4 times more likely to be seriously hurt than those who resisted with a gun. Men who resisted without a gun were 1.5 times more likely to be injured than those resisting with a gun.

Much more here


It has been pointed out to me that although the figure "2.5 times more likely" mentioned above is accurate, the research from which it is derived used a relatively small sample size so an explanation of the result as a purely chance occurence cannot be ruled out.

Taser ad blitz touts consumer stun gun: "Just in time for the holiday season, Scottsdale-based Taser International is marketing a consumer version of the electric stun gun carried by police officers nationwide. A newspaper and billboard advertising campaign began this month in Phoenix, the only city where the advertisements are running. Tasers fire a pair of darts that deliver a debilitating electrical charge. The stun guns are used by about 1,150 law enforcement departments and have been credited with reducing police shootings. 'Given the violence out there and the overall success with law enforcement, this is the operative tool for self-defense,' company spokesman Steve Tuttle said. 'It can stop the most dangerous individuals, which most non-lethal weapons cannot. This is the answer to stop those people safely.' But while the company insists Tasers are non-lethal, some evidence links them to deaths."

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