Reporting part of the story (Letters, "Armed as for a war zone," Connection, Dec. 13) can be more misleading than reporting none. Here's what some don't want you to know: If you're not involved with drugs or gangs, the probability that you'll be the victim of violent crime in the U.S. drops to the same levels as those in Western European nations with the most restrictive gun regulations in the world. Attributing differences in homicide rates to gun ownership rates, without a hint of empirical support, is deceptive and irresponsible.
Also, overall homicide rates in the U.S. are 12 times closer than the specific gun homicide rate given in Mr. Nelson's letter. In other words, British criminals substitute knives or clubs for guns to kill their victims — cold comfort there.
Housebreaking is far more common in Britain than in the U.S. Could this be due to the deterrent effect of widespread gun ownership? Surveys of violent felons reveal that they are far more fearful of facing an armed resident than the highly unlikely chance that a cop will appear during the crime.