Anytime shootings and gun crimes go up, we hear calls for gun control. But is that really the answer?

A recent special report by showed states where gun-related crimes are surging. New Jersey is one of them.

The study followed gun tracing by the ATF. Guns that are traced by the ATF are typically those found at crime scenes and are that have either been used or are suspected to have been used, to commit a crime.

Those tracings were up 11.5% from 2021 to 2022. And even though gun purchases were up in the state, during that same period, we still have almost the least amount of guns of any state in the country.

In fact, another report shows what most of us already know. New Jersey is one of the states that has some of the lowest numbers of legal gun sales in the country.

In all of the 50 states, New Jersey came in 49th in background checks for the purchase of firearms. Less legal Guns, More gun crimes. So how to explain?

Of course, we know that an increase in gun crimes could happen for a multitude of reasons. But it’s interesting to note that one of those reasons is not how many legal gun owners we have.

Adobe Stock
Adobe Stock

It makes perfect sense to me. While it’s important to note that correlation does not imply causation and correlation between gun sales and gun crimes is a complex issue, doesn’t it sound like most of the people committing gun crimes are doing so with illegal guns?

It’s a no-brainer that one of the reasons gun crimes could go up even if gun sales are down is that criminals are obtaining guns through illegal means.

If a decrease in gun sales by law-abiding citizens is because of how difficult it is to buy a legal gun in NJ, while criminals are obtaining them easily, there’s an unfair balance of power.

That’s why in my opinion, it doesn’t make sense to restrict gun laws even further than we have in this state—to make it even more difficult for law-abiding citizens to buy guns in New Jersey.

Especially because those with nefarious intent are able to obtain them on the black market with no such restrictions.

Opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Judi Franco only.

You can now listen to Dennis & Judi — On Demand! Hear New Jersey’s favorite best friends anytime, anywhere and any day of the week. Download the Dennis & Judi show wherever you get podcasts, on our free app, or listen right now.

Click here to contact an editor about feedback or a correction for this story.

How Many in America: From Guns to Ghost Towns

Can you take a guess as to how many public schools are in the U.S.? Do you have any clue as to how many billionaires might be residing there? Read on to find out—and learn a thing or two about each of these selection’s cultural significance and legacy along the way.

States with the most registered hunters

Stacker analyzed data from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to determine which states have the most registered hunters. Read on to see how your state ranks on Stacker’s list.

More From New Jersey 101.5 FM