Four years ago, Maine took a political gamble and enacted a law which would allow its residents to carry a firearm without the need for a special permit or conceal carry license.
At the time, the bill was described as radical by anti-gun groups, who vigorously fought against its passage. As the Western Journal reports, an opponent of the bill in the state legislature argued that citizens would be fearful to go out in public. Another opponent said it would help criminals obtain and carry firearms easier.
From the report:
Reducing crime is an admirable goal of lawmakers and society at large. Honestly, it’s starting to become the only vision for America’s future that the left and right share.
Unfortunately, the agreement ends there.
While the left prefers to reduce crime by pretending it doesn’t exist or by attacking constitutional rights, the right wants to get out of the way and empower citizens to protect themselves and others.
But, years later, Maine is the safest state in the entire country, according to U.S. News:
A higher state ranking indicates a lower crime rate for these metrics. Maine ranks first in the nation for public safety. Fellow New England state Vermont places second in this subcategory, followed by New Hampshire, New Jersey and Idaho.
The Western Journal adds:
This just goes to show that permissive gun laws do not necessarily correlate with higher crime. Crime has nothing to do with the tool that it is committed with but by the hearts of the people that commit it.
A quick look at U.S. News’ list and each state’s concealed carry laws demonstrates this perfectly.
Maine has permissive gun laws and ranks first on the list of low violent crime rate; Vermont and Idaho also have unrestricted concealed carry laws and are second and fifth on the list, respectively. Other states, such as Alaska and Arkansas, have similar gun laws but fall near the bottom of the list.
The Western Journal reports that some states with more restrictive gun laws still rank high on the list, like New Jersey, and that states with and without tight restrictions mesh together throughout the rankings.
The Western Journal concludes: “It means that crime is a people problem, not a gun problem. Despite tough laws, criminals can still obtain guns, and allowing citizens to protect themselves does not make our communities any more dangerous.”
And, per the report: “All across the country, there are people with little intent to follow the law, and changing the laws around them does not make them more inclined to do so.”