Thursday, November 22, 2007

Recommended Books for Christmas Gifts

Mike Adams, a criminology professor and columnist, sent out his annual list of books give and not to give as Christmas gifts:

"Freak-o-nomics," by Steven Levitt and Stephen Dupner.

This book has raised quite a stink with its assertion that legalizing
abortion in the 1970s greatly reduced crime on the 1990s. The book
also makes claims about the effects of right-to-carry laws on crime
rates, which are contrary to what I have been saying in speeches on
college campuses including Ohio University and, more recently,
Bucknell University. Nonetheless, I always encourage my readers to
seek contrary opinions.

"Freedom-nomics" by John R. Lott, Jr.

In this enjoyable book, Lott offers an intriguing argument about the
true effects the 1973 "Roe" decision has had on crime. This argument
alone makes the book well worth the purchase price. But Lott also
offers a strong rebuttal to the assertion that right-to-carry laws
have not reduced crime. Levitt and Dupner suggest that Lott may have
fabricated data and that there has been a widespread inability of
others to replicate his results. But, why then, are there more
refereed studies (fifteen) showing that CCWs reduce homicide rates
than refereed studies (ten) showing no effect? And why are there no
(exactly zero) refereed studies showing the CCWs are increasing
homicide rates? Was that not the principal argument against
right-to-carry laws in the first place?

Lott also makes a strong case for the deterrent effect of the death
penalty, which is causing this lifelong abolitionist to reconsider his



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