Crime is down. Why? More guns equals less crime? Yes, I like to believe that, but the data so far isn't conclusive. It's definitely correlation, but causation hasn't been proven. The corrallary that anti-civil-rights folks posit, that "more guns equals MORE crime" has been put paid to. And it's a foregone conclusion that more guns equals more freedom, and THAT is a good in itself. It would be valid and called for it more guns DID equal more crime.
No, I think this drop is crime we've been on, this twenty year downward glidescope, is because the soap dodging hippies are getting old. The are naturally violent, this breed of hippies, and are a blight on the more upstanding members of this generation. But they are nothing if not self-centered. They'd hate to hurt their precious extra-special skin. Now that they are aged they worry they'd break a hip on one of their unlawful sprees. They don't care if they hurt others, but to hurt themselves? Can't have that.
Just a personal theory of mine.
[Bonus question: Is the correlation between more guns and less crime a stronger case for causation than all the fraudulent data proffered up to show a carbon forced anthropogenic change in climate? Climate study is a more complex beast. And it doesn't help when you fudge near everything and can show a tempurature increase over time plugging the same years data every year for a 50 year graph...]
Update: There could also be less crime because there is less lead paint in the environment.
Declssified NSA COMSEC lectures - From 1973. One-time tapes, codes, TEMPEST. Fin stuff if you're a crypto-nerd like me.
6 minutes ago