Detroit is America’s New 2nd Amendment Capital


The collapse of Detroit’s civic institutions is turning the city into a testbed for an armed society also being a polite society. There probably aren’t very many NRA members in Detroit, but it’s beginning to live out the reality of what happens when the police can’t protect and you have to rely on your own abilities and skills to survive.

Criminals prowling for victims in Detroit are instead finding armed citizens willing to open fire.

A northwest Detroit homeowner on Tuesday fatally shot two men he said were trying to break into his west-side house.

If those shootings are ruled self-defense, they will bring to 10 the number of fatal self-defense shootings in the city since Jan. 1.

Detroit has traditionally had a large percentage of the nation’s justifiable homicides by citizens. In 2012, the last year for which national figures are available, there were 25 justifiable homicides in Detroit, which made up 8 percent of the 310 seen nationwide. Last year, there were 15 justifiable homicides in the city.

Detroit Police Chief James Craig said at a press conference last week that in his 37-year career, he’s never seen as many homeowners defending themselves by shooting intruders. Craig told The News in January he felt the crime rate could be lowered if more “good Americans” were armed, because he said criminals would think twice about attacking.

“It does appear more and more Detroiters are becoming empowered,” Craig said. “More and more Detroiters are getting sick of the violence. I know of no other place where I’ve seen this number of justifiable homicides. It’s interesting that these incidents go across gender lines.”

“People who are faced with a dangerous situation are taking matters into their own hands,” Craig said. “We’re not advocating violence; we’re advocates of not being victims. We’re advocates of self-protection. We want people to be safe.

“This should be a message to those who continue to perpetuate violence on Detroiters that enough is enough. You’ve got to be concerned about good Detroiters who aren’t going to stand for it,” Craig said. “Detroiters are fed up and they are taking action.”

Johnny West, a 63-year-old resident of the city’s east side, is licensed to carry a .40 caliber Glock, and said he’ll use it if need be.

“People have to protect themselves,” West said. “These criminals have no business breaking into people’s houses in the first place. Don’t take what’s not yours, and everything will be OK. If someone’s coming in your house, you don’t have time to call the cops; you’ll end up laying there dead. You got to do what you got to do.”

It takes a good guy with a gun to stop a bad guy with a gun.

Craig, who is black, is saying things that are unacceptable to most cops in urban centers who put their priority on controlling the population by taking firearms out of the equation. But Detroit’s police force is in no state to do that.

Craig has launched some successful raids on drug dealers and targeted gang members. The force still has enough resources for targeted strikes like that. But like the rest of Detroit, it lacks the capacity for preventative measures or much of a street presence. And in a way this is how it used to be. The modern city with its illusion that the police can be everywhere doesn’t actually hold up too well. Craig would like to use armed homeowners to extend the reach of a police force that is otherwise incapable of projecting enough force to provide protection to Detroit residents.

As more cities continue to implode, it’s a philosophy that we may be seeing more of.

It may not be Ray Kelly or Bill Bratton, polished NY and LA pros who rely on statistics and social tinkering to lower crimes, but Craig who will be seen as the future of policing.

  • kasandra

    In Detroit, when seconds count, the police are only 59 minutes (average) away.

    • UCSPanther

      Detroit: When seconds count, the police are hours away.

  • T800

    Thomas Jefferson: “Laws that forbid the carrying of arms…disarm only those who are neither inclined or determined to commit crimes. Such laws only make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assassins; they serve to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man.” (1764 Letter and speech from T. Jefferson quoting with approval an essay by Cesare Beccari)

    • Tanks-a-lot

      Meanwhile, Jefferson’s letter to the Danbury Baptists is held up as the “Atheist Constitutional Amendment” forcing Atheism as the official State Religion down to the municipal level, even though Jefferson didn’t sign the Constitution.

  • UCSPanther

    There was those two incidents, one where a woman chased off a pack of teenage home invaders with a Hi-Point carbine, and another where a particularly dumb (Or desperate) home invader was clearly warned by a homeowner to leave at gun point, failed to heed, and wound up six feet under.

    I have no pity for criminals.

  • Peter

    Doesn’t this story raise problems for the claim that we’ll see less crime if citizens have access to guns? If Detroiters defend themselves as readily as the story says, their city should be low in crime.

    • Bryan

      Not at all. The lack of morals present in many street cred people will ensure a fresh supply of criminals. A society that persistently claims you are not responsible for your actions is bound to raise several people that feel they should be able to get away with anything.
      You can be sure that those slain home invaders have stopped their criminal activities though (and at minimal cost to the city).

    • Daniel Greenfield

      Not really. It’s less crime relative to an armed population that polices its own property.

      The process is only really starting in Detroit… and it’s only relative to what it would be otherwise.

    • tagalog

      In order to commit a crime, the citizens would have to be doing something unlawful. It’s not unlawful to use deadly force to protect yourself and your loved ones from those who use deadly force.

      The more afraid those who are willing to commit crimes are of those who are not, the lower the crime rate will be. If the trend of law-abiding citizens fighting crime with deadly force continues, the crime rate will fall.

  • leftist Royalty

    Surprise ! Take police unions and unnecessary members out of the equation and voila.

  • andrewwhitehead

    It’s good to see a major black LE member recognizing that citizens have the right to defend themselves with firearms.

    I mention his color only because I am wondering where are Al and Jesse? Better question: if Chief Craig was white, would he still be chief?

    • tagalog

      Al and Jesse are keeping their mouths shut until they can figure out where the wind blows among blacks on this issue. They understand that a lot of gun control law in its early days was aimed at keeping guns out of the hands of black citizens.

  • Lanna

    The police and residents are finding out that these so-called Gun Free Zones benefit the criminals more than honest law abiding citizens…It is everyone’s right under the 2nd amendment and US constitution to protect yourselves…..The criminals rejoice in a non-armed…or Disarmed people. The police cannot be everywhere at one time, that’s why its up to citizens to protect your families, until the police can arrive on the scene.

  • Texas Patriot

    Chief Craig would make a great candidate for president.