Jackson, MS is in the midst of a crime wave not seen in a quarter of a century. In 2018 there were 84 homicides and 83 in 2019. That is the highest since 1993 and makes the per capita murder rate “one of the highest in the nation, worse than New Orleans, Memphis, and even Detroit.” It is also “twice Chicago’s homicide rate.” Things have gotten so bad that federal authorities stepped in to help clean up Jackson streets. In a program called Project EJECT authorities are using federal charges in order to stop the revolving door of crime. U.S. Attorney Mike Hurst recently held a press conference criticizing judges and politicians about the violent crime in Jackson. Hurst stated that “in the federal system, they’re much more often detained without bond than in the Hinds County court system. They serve their entire sentence in a federal prison far from home with no chance for parole.”

Those in the Jackson Police Department will tell you that most of the crime is committed by a small group of violent individuals, but even when police are able to make an arrest, the individuals rarely remain in jail long. This is not isolated to just Jackson, MS. On a recent episode of Tucker Carlson Tonight, he said it is happening in cities all across the country. Unfortunately, that puts all of the law-abiding citizens at risk. Many residents are concerned and are taking up arms to protect themselves. But does carrying a gun prevent crime?

The Center for Disease Control estimates there are over 6,000 Defensive Gun Uses every day here in the United States. The overwhelming majority of the time the gun owner never has to pull the trigger. So yes, having a firearm prevents crime and saves lives, but proper training in actual defensive gun use is also important. This requires more than just an online video, a one-day permit class or time on the range with family or friends. Proper training requires a commitment. Could you commit to taking one class per year and practicing at the range every other month?

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