During his raucous interview with rabble rouser Alex Jones, CNN's Piers Morgan unleashed several false gun statistics to show how wonderful his British homeland is for its gun banning ways. But Cincinnati's Fox affiliate WXIX didn't let Morgan get away with it, thoroughly– debunking the CNNer' false stats.
With his January 8 "Reality Check" segment, WXIX's Ben Swann completely undermined Morgan's gauzy claim that Britain's gun banning makes his countrymen safer compared to the wild west that is the U.S.A.
During the interview with Alex Jones, Morgan kept blathering about how Great Britain only had 35 murders with guns in 2011. That is compared to 11,000 murders with guns in the U.S. Morgan piously maintained that this made Great Britain's laws better.
But Swann used real statistics to show that Morgan's claims are misleading in general and just plain wrong in specifics.
Swann not only showed that the U.S. has a lower violent crime rate than 28 other countries, but that it is also safer to live here, despite that we are number one in the world for gun ownership, than it is to live in Morgan's beloved Great Britain.
According to FBI crime stats for 2011, there were 12,664 homicides in the U.S. Of those, 8,583 were caused by firearms. But of those, 400 are listed as justifiable homicide by law enforcement. 260 were justifiable homicides by private citizens.
On the other hand, it is true that percentage-wise Britain has a lower gun homicide rate. With a population of 62.6 million, Great Britain saw 59 gun-related homicides in 2011.
Still, not the 35 that Piers Morgan keeps citing.
But it shouldn't be surprising that the gun homicide rate in a country that bans guns would be lower than in a country where guns are not banned. Where the argument falls apart is when you attempt to claim that fewer guns equals less crime.
The U.S. has the highest gun ownership rate in the world. An average of 88 guns per 100 people. That puts it first in the world for gun ownership.
Yemen is second with 54.8 guns per 100 people.
So that means the U.S. has the highest gun murder rate as well, right?
Honduras, El Salvador, and Jamaica have higher rates. So do 24 other countries. The U.S., despite being number one in gun ownership, is number 28 in gun homicide with a rate of 2.97 per 100,000 people.
Of course, Piers Morgan isn't calling for the U.S. to be more like El Salvador and Honduras; he's calling for us to be more like Great Britain. So, what do the numbers look like there?
The UK has the second highest overall crime rate in the EU. The UK has the fifth highest robbery rate and the fourth highest burglary rate. But more importantly, the EU named Britain as the most violent country in the EU.
In the UK there are 2,034 violent crimes per 100,000 people. That puts it way ahead of even South Africa with a rate of 1,609 per 100,000.
In the United States, we're not even in the top ten. The U.S. has a violent crime rate of 466 crimes per 100,000 residents.
So, what this means for you is that, while people like Morgan insist that the U.S. can learn from Great Britain... well, maybe we can. What we might learn is that violent crime is not the result of a gun or any tool; it is the result of the heart of men and women. And that is Reality Check.