A new statewide poll of Illinois residents, released yesterday by the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute at Southern Illinois University and reported today by the Chicago Sun-Times shows more people in the Chicago area feel less safe with passage of concealed carry in the Prairie State.
Anti-gun Mayor Rahm Emanuel had not weighed in on the poll results, but it appears the majority of his constituents share his mindset about privately-owned firearms. According to the poll, taken Feb. 12-25 from 1,001 people, 64.5 percent of the respondents in Chicago feel less safe with the new carry law, while in downstate Illinois, only 40.5 percent feel less safe. People in Chicago suburbs also feel less safe, but to a lesser degree with 54.6 taking that position.
The survey also revealed that 53 percent of those polled believe “controlling gun ownership was more important than protecting the rights of gun owners,” a survey synopsis explained. WSIL News also covered the poll today.
Maybe that’s because authorities in Chicago have not been too successful in preventing criminals with guns from shooting each other, and innocent victims, for quite some time, well before the new carry law was enacted. The Sun-Times reported that, since Monday evening, nine people had been shot in the Windy City, one of them fatally.
Whether any of these shootings was committed by a citizen with a newly-obtained concealed carry permit has not been reported. These attacks appear to have been unprovoked and at least one was gang-related, the newspaper indicated.
Perhaps what Chicago needs is a police chief like James Craig up in Detroit. His attitude about fighting back has been getting some attention over the past week, after he suggested that Motor City thugs need to be as worried about citizens fighting back as they might about the local police.
If the poll says anything, it is that the urban mindset remains one of collective dependence upon government to take care of people, rather than them being responsible enough to take care of themselves. Their experience with guns is that the wrong people have been using them and leaving a body count in their wake.
Downstate, 41 percent of the survey respondents feel safer with the new concealed carry law.