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Wed Jun 13, 2012, 03:57 PM

....the primary impact of SYG is to increase the loss of human life……

Last edited Fri Jun 15, 2012, 01:40 PM - Edit history (1)

Since Florida adopted the first castle doctrine law in 2005, more than 20 other states have passed similar self-defense laws that justify the use of deadly force in a wider set of circumstances. Elements of these laws include removing the duty to retreat in places outside of one’s home, adding a presumption of reasonable belief of imminent harm necessitating a lethal response, and removing civil liability for those acting under the law. This paper examines whether aiding self-defense in this way deters crime or, alternatively, escalates violence. To do so, we apply a difference-in-differences research design by exploiting the within-state variation in law adoption. We find no evidence of deterrence; burglary, robbery, and aggravated assault are unaffected by the laws. On the other hand, we find that murder and non-negligent manslaughter are increased by 7 to 9 percent. This could represent either increased use of lethal force in self-defense situations, or the escalation of violence in otherwise non-lethal situations. Regardless, the results indicate that a primary consequence of strengthening self-defense law is increased homicide. http://www.nber.org/papers/w18134.pdf
Link to study added http://econweb.tamu.edu/mhoekstra/castle_doctrine.pdf
Thanks Dan
Why might this be the case? The authors are not entirely sure, but the effect, they are confident, is substantial: The additional homicides induced by castle doctrine could be due to victims practicing self-defense under the terms of the new law, an increased propensity by criminals to use lethal force when committing crimes or encountering resistance, the escalation of other conflicts, or some combination of the above. While we would expect different analysts to weight homicides from these situations differently, it is clear that the primary impact of these laws, beyond giving potential victims additional scope to protect themselves, is to increase the loss of human life.
http://blogs.wsj.com/ideas-market/2012/06/12/protect-the-castle-laws-and-homicide/

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Reply ....the primary impact of SYG is to increase the loss of human life…… (Original post)
russ1943 Jun 2012 OP
TheWraith Jun 2012 #1
Hells Liberal Jun 2012 #3
rrneck Jun 2012 #2
ileus Jun 2012 #4
DanTex Jun 2012 #5
PavePusher Jun 2012 #7
Callisto32 Jun 2012 #10
DanTex Jun 2012 #11
Callisto32 Jun 2012 #13
DanTex Jun 2012 #15
Callisto32 Jun 2012 #16
DanTex Jun 2012 #18
Callisto32 Jun 2012 #26
DanTex Jun 2012 #28
TPaine7 Jun 2012 #20
TPaine7 Jun 2012 #22
PavePusher Jun 2012 #6
DanTex Jun 2012 #8
Callisto32 Jun 2012 #12
DanTex Jun 2012 #14
gejohnston Jun 2012 #9
hack89 Jun 2012 #17
gejohnston Jun 2012 #19
OneTenthofOnePercent Jun 2012 #21
SkatmanRoth Jun 2012 #23
ileus Jun 2012 #24
TPaine7 Jun 2012 #25
slackmaster Jun 2012 #27

Response to russ1943 (Original post)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 04:06 PM

1. Gosh, it's so horrible that people are allowed to defend themselves.

Instead of simply being given the choice to be raped/beaten/killed or to defend themselves and then go to prison because of it.

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Response to TheWraith (Reply #1)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 04:11 PM

3. Amen, Brother Wraith!

 

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Response to russ1943 (Original post)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 04:07 PM

2. Another study...

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Response to russ1943 (Original post)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 04:14 PM

4. Rude practitioners of a hateful science...

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Response to russ1943 (Original post)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 04:14 PM

5. Interesting. The usual suspects will arrive shortly with their head-in-the-sand denialism...

The Zimmerman/Martin incident is a perfect example of the increased death that comes with Stand-Your-Ground laws. I would guess that the gun culture and the gun hero mentality have much to do with the results of this study. SYG encourages and legitimizes reckless vigilante behavior, which results both in more "self-defense" shootings that are not really defensive, as well as more escalations, where a victim of a property crime decides it's more brave or honorable to get into a shoot-out with a bad guy, rather than just handing over some cash and getting away uninjured.

PS: Here's a link to the study from the author's homepage:
http://econweb.tamu.edu/mhoekstra/castle_doctrine.pdf

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Response to DanTex (Reply #5)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 04:19 PM

7. That horse you're beating....

 

it ceased all activity long ago.

We'll have to wait for the court verdict, of course, but it's been shown many times that Z may not have been legally acting defensively, so SYG would not apply.

And please let us know how to determine the intent of criminals in advance, with your bonded guarantee.

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Response to DanTex (Reply #5)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 04:31 PM

10. Hmmm.

They compared states with castle doctrine to states without. What? A better measure would be gotten by comparing the rates of violent crimes, justifiable homicide, et cetera within the same state both before and after adoption. I'd also like to see crime data for those states over a MUCH larger span of time, as we can control for the laws by comparing the post SYG data to the data over as much time as possible, not just a year before. I've taken a tertiary look at the data, and it looks like there was indeed a spike in crime after 2005, but it is no more a spike than what happened in the past in the same states, and the rates now seem to be trending downward. This study relies on a VERY small snapshot of time, that concerns me.

Also, a single incident does not show a "perfect example of the increased death that comes with SYG laws." Data would do that, and I'm not sure how good the data sample was in this study.

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Response to Callisto32 (Reply #10)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 04:42 PM

11. Actually, they used the "differences in differences" method.

That means they did compare the rates of violent crimes in the same state before and after adoption. Then they compared those changes to the changes in violent crime rates in other states with no adoption. That's why it's called "differences in differences".

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Difference_in_differences

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Response to DanTex (Reply #11)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 04:49 PM

13. Indeed.

My reply didn't come out as planned, I was reading data while writing it and revised things in my head that didn't get to the post.

Table 5: The Escalation Effects of Castle Doctrine: Homicide, Murder, Ratio of Robberies Involving a Gun, and Ratio of Assaults Involving a Gun:

They compare one year before, to after. I don't think that this is nearly enough time, especially given the crime trends in the U.S. over the past couple of decades being characterized by waxes and wanes in rates.

ETA:
That being said, I still don't think the use of "difference in differences" method makes their conclusions any more correct, and that better conclusions could be drawn from data that is purely intrastate, since this controls for lots of differences between the states. Also, presuming that their presumption that people consider statutory law before they act is true, you would have to control for any other possibly pertinent changes in laws. They seem to be trying to draw mountainous conclusions from mole-hillish data.

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Response to Callisto32 (Reply #13)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 04:53 PM

15. Well, apparently it was enough time, because at that time scale they found a statistically...

...significant effect.

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Response to DanTex (Reply #15)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 04:55 PM

16. Go look at the raw crime rate data for these states.

You will quickly see that the pattern they are attributing to SYG laws has occurred in the past, before the passage of said laws, therefore there is probably something else driving crime rates.

ETA:
It may be statistically significant at that scale, but would it continue to be so over the entirety of available crime rate data? By taking a small sample, in which there is a possible statistical outlier, you make statistically significant something that isn't, sometimes.

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Response to Callisto32 (Reply #16)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 05:21 PM

18. That's not how statistical significance works.

A small sample doesn't make you more likely to find a statistically significant pattern, unless you're doing your statistics wrong. In fact, a small sample actually makes it more difficult to achieve statistical significance, because the effect needs to be stronger than it would if you had a larger sample.

Also, since the pattern they are describing involves differential increases in certain crime rates in states with policy changes relative to states without changes, I highly doubt that you were able to spot the "same pattern" with your naked eyes by looking at the raw data.

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Response to DanTex (Reply #18)

Fri Jun 15, 2012, 10:22 AM

26. Dude:

If you have a sample of 4 seconds of data from the sun, and you have 3.99999 seconds of it being X degrees, and suddenly there is a spike of X+150 Degrees, you may think something odd happened. So you look at the data you have and control things out, and find that immediately before the spike, Y happened. Based on your data, you may conclude that Y has something to do with the spike.

Then you go back and look at a year's worth of data from the sun and see that these spikes happen a couple of times, and in none of the other situations did Y occur. You must therefore conclude that Y was not necessarily the cause of the X+150 spike. It may be, but it may not be, you have a metric shit-tonne of more studying to do before your conclusions mean anything. That's all I'm saying.

This study, by not looking at the decades of available crime data is basically employing post hoc ergo propter hoc.

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Response to Callisto32 (Reply #26)

Fri Jun 15, 2012, 03:31 PM

28. Dude!

You might have had a point if the study only looked at one state that changed its laws. But they didn't. They looked at the entire country, and compared changes in homicide rates in states where policy changed to the change in states where it didn't. Their findings aren't based on one anomalous spike, they are based on average changes in homicide rates over many different states.

So, to go along with your analogy, it's actually more like this. Suppose we take a look at fifty stars over a few years. We observe that, in about half of the stars, at some point an event Y is observed. And if you look at the change in temperature in stars before and after the event Y occurs, and compare this to the change in temperature among stars where Y never happened, the stars where Y occurred, on average, exhibited a small but statistically significant relative increase versus the others. "Statistical significance" is not just some buzzword that ivory tower liberals invented to take away your guns.

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Response to DanTex (Reply #5)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 05:41 PM

20. I bet you would...

 

I would guess that the gun culture and the gun hero mentality have much to do with the results of this study. SYG encourages and legitimizes reckless vigilante behavior, which results ... in ... more escalations, where a victim of a property crime decides it's more brave or honorable to get into a shoot-out with a bad guy, rather than just handing over some cash and getting away uninjured.


I bet you would guess that.

However, the plain fact is that many who have cooperated have been severely beaten, raped or killed.

By all means, decide how best to preserve your own life in such situations, but realize that others have the right to do the same.

It is naive in the extreme to presume that a person facing an armed robber has a clear and simple choice:

1. Just hand over some cash and get away uninjured

2. Foolishly be brave or honorable and "escalate" the situation with "reckless vigilante behavior" by having the temerity to defend themselves from a credible threat of death

When those in power gamble the lives of the " little people" on such callous "guesses" it's not only naive but profoundly evil.

Those who ride in bulletproof limos with taxpayer funded security details shouldn't ban CCW.

Oh, and what do you think the law was before SYG? Do you think it was legally required to pay the thug tax? Or were you expected to try to outrun the bullets?

I never thought it was that bad, even in NY or Chicago, but please elaborate.

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Response to DanTex (Reply #5)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 06:23 PM

22. The pathetic thing is that no one would mind if police killed more armed people who were pointing

 

guns at them. And yet if civilians kill people under the same circumstances, that's a tragic and troubling "loss of human life."

Why is it that one scenario is no problem while the other one is? It's almost as if the citizenry exist to serve the police, instead of the other way around.

The way I understand it, the justification for the police existing is the protection of the rights of the citizens. If it is justified if the servant--"to protect and serve"--defends his life when a gun is pointed at him, why is it not justified that a mistress--one of the people being served--protects herself under the same circumstances? Especially when you consider that the mistress isn't wearing a bullet-proof vest?

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Response to russ1943 (Original post)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 04:16 PM

6. So, it seems that some homocides that were being wrongly treated as murders...

 

are now correctly treated as defensive deaths.

I'm not sure how that is a bad thing...

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Response to PavePusher (Reply #6)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 04:22 PM

8. Wrong.

More significantly, we find the laws increase murder and manslaughter
by a statistically significant 7 to 9 percent, which translates into an additional 500 to 700
homicides per year nationally across the states that adopted castle doctrine. Thus, by
lowering the expected costs associated with using lethal force, castle doctrine laws induce
more of it. This increase in homicides could be due either to the increased use of lethal
force in self-defense situations, or to the escalation of violence in otherwise non-lethal
conflicts. We suspect that self-defense situations are unlikely to explain all of the increase,
as we also find that murder alone is increased by a statistically significant 6 to 11 percent.
This is important because murder excludes non-negligent manslaughter classifications that
one might think are used more frequently in self-defense cases. But regardless of how one
interprets increases from various classifications, it is clear that the primary effect of
strengthening self-defense law is to increase homicide


The results aren't due to re-classifications. The total number of homicides went up: 500 to 700 extra homicides a year. As the authors point out, murder alone increased by 6 to 11 percent, statistically significant.

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Response to DanTex (Reply #8)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 04:45 PM

12. They aren't necessarily due to the SYG laws either.

Those changes in crime rate may have happened anyway, and a quick look at some raw crimes data shows that to be the case.

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Response to Callisto32 (Reply #12)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 04:51 PM

14. Actually, yes, according to the study, they are due to SYG.

That's the entire point of a study like this. To determine the relative changes in crime rates attributable to a change in policy.

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Response to russ1943 (Original post)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 04:26 PM

9. the very first sentence is demonstrably false

Since Florida adopted the first castle doctrine law in 2005, more than 20 other states have passed similar self-defense laws that justify the use of deadly force in a wider set of circumstances. Elements of these laws include removing the duty to retreat in places outside of one’s home, adding a presumption of reasonable belief of imminent harm necessitating a lethal response, and removing civil liability for those acting under the law.
First, SYG and Castle Doctrine are two different things. Many states have been SYG by common law before then. Those include Washington and California. Illinois passed SYG in 1961.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stand-your-ground_law#Illinois but has been by court decision since the 1950s.

Regarding the Castle Doctrine:
The American interpretation of this doctrine is largely derived from the English Common Law as it stood in the 18th century. In Book 4, Chapter 16 of William Blackstone's Commentaries on the Laws of England, he states that the laws "leave him (the inhabitant) the natural right of killing the aggressor (the burglar)"

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Castle_doctrine

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Response to russ1943 (Original post)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 05:04 PM

17. So more criminals are getting killed? OK nt

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Response to russ1943 (Original post)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 05:31 PM

19. this is an honest question

Last edited Wed Jun 13, 2012, 10:13 PM - Edit history (1)

Is the study about SYG or Castle Doctrine? Do the authors know the difference? Based on their introduction, they don't. While English common law has been DTR outside the home, it is also Castle Doctrine (self defense within the home.) It appears the the authors don't actually know the difference. For example in Table one is titled "castle doctrine". I don't know about the rest of the states on the list, but it describes Wyoming as a Duty to Retreat (no answer in column 2). That is not Wyoming's Castle Doctrine law. It does accurately describe Wyoming's duty to retreat law, since it does not have SYG.
Some will say that is nitpicky and whining. Maybe it is, but I disagree for this specific reason:
It affects the input information. If their input information is inaccurate (giving a value for "castle doctrine" to a state that is "DTR" for example) it seems reasonable that the results would be flawed.

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Response to russ1943 (Original post)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 06:16 PM

21. I wonder how they account for economic recession?

 

Poor economic conditoins provide a motivation for criminal activity. I wonder ho wthe reports accounted for this. Could the increase in homicides/death simply be from increased criminal activity?

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Response to russ1943 (Original post)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 08:02 PM

23. How to they quantify the number of predatory criminals not killed by their potential victims?

What are the tabulated numbers where a criminal chooses not to commit a crime because they perceive their potential victim may be armed? This would be the saving of a life through deterrence.

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Response to russ1943 (Original post)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 08:15 PM

24. Or...is SYG about protecting life

?

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Response to russ1943 (Original post)

Wed Jun 13, 2012, 10:03 PM

25. Interesting. Per wikipedia, the only published, refereed academic study shows 9% murder decline

 

Last edited Thu Jun 14, 2012, 09:01 AM - Edit history (1)

The law's effect on crime rates is disputed between supporters and critics of the law. The third edition of More Guns, Less Crime (University of Chicago Press, 2010) by John Lott provides the only published, refereed academic study on these laws. The research shows that states adopting “Stand Your Ground”/"Castle doctrine" laws reduced murder rates by 9 percent and overall violent crime by 11 percent, and that occurs even after accounting for a range of other factors such as national crime trends, law enforcement variables (arrest, execution, and imprisonment rates), income and poverty measures (poverty and unemployment rates, per capita real income, as well as income maintenance, retirement, and unemployment payments), demographic changes (broken down by race, gender and age), and the national average changes in crime rates from year-to-year and average differences across states (the fixed year and state effects).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Castle_doctrine


I haven't read Lott's book, but I think the difference in findings is interesting. Eventually it will all get worked out.

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Response to russ1943 (Original post)

Fri Jun 15, 2012, 10:44 AM

27. Details ebb and flow, but at the end of the day the probability of death remains exactly 1

 

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