43 thoughts on “A tale of Two Cities: Chicago vs. Houston”

    1. Only one problem. There are many gun stores/dealers in Chicago and surrounding suburbs. Check the Yellow Pages.

      1. So what? Nonetheless, it’s Chicago – not Salt lake City or Vermont – that has the problem. In Houston, self-defense is legally protected. Texas is a shall-issue concealed carry state, so law-abiding citizens willing to pay the required fees, and receive training and pass an extensive background check can legally carry a sidearm.

        In Chicago (like Puerto Rico, DC, Camden and other low-crime bastions of safety) self-defense was essentially criminalized. Chicago’s gun control regime ensured that only the cops and the crooks carry firearms.

        In McDonald v. Chicago, 561 U.S. 742 (2010), Chicago’s gun control regime was recognized as illegal by the US Supreme Court. And what happened in the wake of the MacDonald decision? The murder rate declined to from 50 homicides per 100,000 population to roughly 43 homicides per 100,000.

        Banning self-defense by law-abiding citizens – and the necessary tools of self-defense – does not make us safer.

        1. People aren’t murdered in Chicago because they don’t know how to defend themselves, the are murdered in violent altercations. You don’t walk up to someone with a gun carrying a stick and tell them to get the ____ off your property!

          If you’re caught in cross-fire or mugged from behind or killed while you and your buddies attack a rivaling gang having a gun doesn’t prevent murders. Having a gun only helps when you know someone is coming for you minutes or at least seconds before they get you… That’s not how most murders happen!

    1. But Houston has a massive sales tax (aka poor tax) to make up for it. Highest in the country!

      Conclusion: high taxes prevent crime.

    1. I think of the children all the time and that is why I think they should be trained to use a suppressed Ruger 10-22 to protect their fragile ears.

      1. You’re creating soft, cuddly, pampered children, there, Miguel. Give em a set of ear protectors and a vintage Mosin with the metal plate on the butt. That’ll teach em how to shoot, and toughen em up to take over the crappy world they’re going to inherit one day.

  1. That’s kind of funny, actually. I listen to some Chicago talk radio on the way to work every morning, and usually when the murder rate jumps up the CPD brass usually blame warmer weather.

  2. Actually, although it was intended to be humorous, the final assertion in the image may hold a kernel of truth.

    Think about it: Do you change which gun(s) you carry based on the weather? I certainly find it easier to conceal larger guns during periods of colder weather…

  3. joke or not, 99% of the “facts “on here are wrong, and 2 min. of internet reserch would show you that. such as no gun shops in chicago…really? i found tons! pay attention to what you spread..

    1. I agree, the facts are there if folks would just look. Why would you post something that is clearly not true? Did you notice any references for these “facts”?

        1. Your n.y. and n.o. idea wouldnt work here because population is much different and minority population is much different.

  4. It’s a funny quip. However, the facts cited ignore the population density disparity of the two cities. Chicago has 2.191 people per square foot (or each person gets .445 feet), while Houston has .634 every square foot (or each person gets 1.577 feet). Population density has a far greater affect on violent crime rates than gross population rates. The homicide rate cited for Chicago comes from the Metropolitan police department, which includes suburbs, but the other rates are demographics strictly for the the Incorporated City of Chicago. While the rates cited for Houston only include those from the Incorporated City of Houston. Essentially, this has so many fallacies, but it most definitely a straw man/composition/division/plurium interrogationum fallacy of False attribution.

    1. So population density explains why Chicago is so violent? Have you compared the population densities of various European cities with Chicago?
      The most densely populated sovereign nation is Monaco, with a population density of 47,850 per square mile. So Monaco must be a pretty dangerous place, right? It’s about as dangerous at Liechtenstein. (Zero homicides in 2008, the last year for which statistics readily available.)

      1. Unit conversion 1 mi^2 = 5280^2 so 47,850 per square mile = 0.001716 people per square foot. Far less than Chicago or Houston. Also Monaco & Liechtenstein (like most West European countries) are highly liberal and outlaw guns almost entirely which is why their safe, right??

        You’re at 0 for 2 now.

  5. Miguel G,

    This comparison is interesting. It’s too bad the conclusion is so shallow. Secondly, Chicago and Houston have very different histories. Regardless of your views on gun ownership, it would be nice if more people took a better look at specifically where the majority of homicide and gun violence takes place in the City of Chicago, and consider what socioeconomic disparities have lead so many to depend on a livelihood involving violence, which has led to the development of generations with a completely different value for human life. I grew up near the Houston Astrodome and have lived in Chicago for the past six years. I love both cities. My heart aches for Chicago, and while I grew up in a household where everyone knew how to hunt and properly handle firearms, the city of Chicago has challenges that the city of Houston does not, and no, we do not need gun legislation that permits the sale of more firearms in the City of Chicago.

    Thanks Clown Ninja for caring about the facts.

  6. You may take this however you like. When perusing the crime statistics of Chicago, what no one seems to be willing to admit is that non-Hispanic whites, while comprising 31.7% of the population, commit barely 5% of the violent crimes. I wonder who commits the other 95%? (HInt: the Asian crime rate is practically non-existent).

  7. Comparing Chicago to Houston, the crime stats look relatively comparable; Chicago has a higher murder rate, but their rate of violent crime is nearly the same (.97% vs .95%). Houston had a higher property crime rate than Chicago (4.14% vs 4.90%). The number of gun stores is irrelevant, since you can simply drive out of the city limits to buy all of the guns you want.

    It’s hard to get good gun data, since the NRA strong arms Congress into blocking government data collection, but the Brady Bill does provide a statistical source. Evaluating the number of permits approved in the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) from1999 to 2008, we can see the rate of guns going into a state. Surprisingly ILLINOIS HAS A HIGHER GUN PERMIT RATE PER CAPITA THAN TEXAS (31% vs 24%)! California is much lower than both (10%).

    Here is a revised chart.

    I’ve also added a comparison between San Diego to similarly sized Dallas (BTW, I’ve lived in San Diego, Dallas and Houston). California with its stricter gun control laws has much lower crime rates.

    There is a great analysis of gun deaths available here: http://www.citylab.com/crime/2012/12/geography-us-gun-violence/4171/

    Following are some highlights.

    — Moroz finds a close relationship between city unemployment and murder by gun. The correlation between city unemployment at the overall rate of gun deaths is considerable (.55), and the correlation between it and gun-related murders is even higher (.72).

    — Poverty is a substantial factor in gun deaths by metro, as it was in our previous state-level analysis. The percentage of a metro’s population below the poverty line is significantly associated with all three types of gun death — homicide (.45), suicide (.35), and the overall rate (.49).

    — More affluent metros have lower rates of all forms of gun death. That said, economic advantage — measured as per capita income — plays a bigger role in moderating the overall rate of gun death (-.55) and that for gun-related suicide (-.64) than for gun-related murders (-.32).

    — A metro’s share of high-tech industry is negatively associated with overall gun deaths (-.49), gun-related suicides (-.53), and homicides (-.32). Conversely, metros with higher shares of blue-collar working class jobs experience higher rates of all three, with positive correlations to overall gun deaths (.52), suicides (.49), and murders (.37).

    — Race, unfortunately and tragically, factors into gun death at the metro level. The share of the population that is black is positively related to both the overall rate of gun death (.56) and even more so with gun-related homicides (.72). The pattern is similar for the share of the population that is comprised of young black males which is also positively related to the overall rate of gun death (.55) and murder by gun (.70). That said, we find no significant association between any type of gun death and the share of the population that is Hispanic.

    — The importance of gun control cannot be minimized. The state level is the appropriate level to examine this. And our previous state level analysis found gun deaths to be significantly lower in states with stricter gun control laws. We found substantial negative correlations between the rate of gun deaths and states that ban assault weapons, require trigger locks, and mandate safe storage requirements for guns.

    Liberal Conclusion: More guns means more gun deaths

    Conservative Conclusion: Facts lie!

    1. Liberal Conclusion: More guns means more gun deaths

      Conservative Conclusion: Facts lie!

      You missed two sets of stats: FBI UCR and NCIS checks for firearms sales.

    2. “We found substantial negative correlations between the rate of gun deaths and states that ban assault weapons…”

      “Assault weapon” is a meaningless bullshit propaganda term like “gateway drug.” Do you understand that it has no fixed meaning? If Congress passed a law tomorrow declaring baseball bats to be “assault weapons,” would that be factually incorrect? NO, because there simply is no definition of the term independent of a given piece of legislation before a legislative body.

      You claim that New Orleans “has loose gun laws…” (1) While Louisiana is a shall-issue concealed carry state, the data show that concealed carry licensees by and large are not the problem. About 3.9 percent of the adult population in Louisiana holds a permit. CHLs are far more law-abiding than the average citizen. (2) Louisiana’s law imposes severe restrictions on where a CHL may carry. For example, only one state completely bans carrying handguns in places that serve alcohol: Louisiana. Do criminals obey these laws? Of course not.

  8. So this advertisement is statistical cherry-picking at it’s best. Chicago, which is actually doing much better than in the past due to reduction in drug trafficking, is being compared to Houston which has a burgeoning middle class and neighborhoods which are primarily immigrants who try to keep a low profile.


    Please see the article below for actual (not cherry-picked) data on a few more cities and you’ll see that the large city with the LOWEST gun violence is New York which is far lower than Houston’s and tougher gun laws than Chicago. and the large city with the HIGHEST was New Orleans which has loose gun laws-though that is likely to change and for good reason-excess drinking and guns are NOT a good combination.

    Conclusion-you can confirm any lie with cherry-picked statistics. And if your audience has fundamentalist beliefs (like no guns are good, or all guns are good) they will believe anything that fits their beliefs…

    If you want to be an intelligent human being, you actually need to find a happy, realistic middle ground which both die-hard liberals and conservatives HATE… Sorry but life is complicated!

  9. Leave aside all the rest of the data but the number of guns.

    If guns are the problem, and if guns cause murder, then why aren’t there fifty people being killed every weekend in Houston?

  10. Problem is most thugs use stolen guns stolen from law abiding citizens who feel the need to think they are protected fact is most don’t even know the shooting is happening..So how many gun stores didn’t matter what matters is sensible education regulation to ensure the thug can’t steel your gun and use it to commit a crime..Its called common sense something many lack

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