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Top city officials still aren’t saying exactly what they think Chicago’s handgun ban is accomplishing. I’m wondering whether they can’t—or just won’t because sticking up for the ban gives them cover for their inability to cope with our city’s persistent violence.

Police superintendent Jody Weis held a press conference at police headquarters Sunday morning to announce that total crime from the beginning of the year through the end of May was down 5.8 percent from 2009. He told the seven members of the media present (it’s amazing that many of us showed up since the police department didn’t e-mail notice of the event till 10 PM Saturday) that crime has dropped from the year before for 17 consecutive months.

But some of the other stats Weis disclosed—and his discussion of several recent shootings—were far more revealing.