In the DC vs. Heller decision the Supreme Court ruled that blanket bans on firearms were unconstitutional for federal enclaves such as the District of Columbia. The ruling did leave the door open to regulations on gun ownership, so while DC authorities cannot outright ban handguns and the like as they have in the past, they can make purchases, possessing and carrying them so legally arduous that they may as well be banned.
Which is exactly what they’ve done since the ruling. Authorities are using things such as zoning ordinances to keep gun stores out, for instance.
So when we hear that violent crimes are up 40% in Washington DC it’s not because of some new surge in gun possession/carry (via Bruce Oksol):
Violent crime so far this year in the District of Columbia has spiked sharply — a 40 percent increase that includes twice as many robberies at gunpoint than at this time last year.
The crime rate is increasing this year after a downward trend — the number of reported homicides last year dropped to the lowest level in a half-century.
Homicides were the only category of violent crime to decline in the first six weeks this year. As of Thursday, the city had recorded 10 homicides compared with 11 at a similar point last year.
Overall, though, incidents of violent crime — homicides, sexual assaults, robberies and assaults with deadly weapons — are rising at an alarming pace.
Maybe if some of these victims had been allowed to arm themselves there wouldn’t have been so many crimes. As it stands now, Washington DC is open season for criminals because the citizens there cannot defend themselves even after the Supreme Court upheld their right to bear arms.