- An estimated 55 million Americans own guns.
- The percentage of the U.S. population who own guns decreased slightly from 25% in 1994 to 22% last year.
- Between 300,000 and 600,000 guns are stolen each year.
- Gun owners tend to be white, male, conservative, and live in rural areas.
- 25% of gun owners in America are white or multi-racial, compared with 16% of Hispanics and 14% of African Americans.
- There are an estimated 111 million handguns nationwide, a 71% increase from the 65 million handguns in 1994.
I’ve been meaning to cover this for some time now, but all the election and odds coverage has pushed this one back. Also, it took hardly a passing glance at this “study” to prove its illegitimacy, and wasn’t even sure it deserved to even be recognized. However, given the astounding number of people that I have seen cite it as justification to further restrict gun rights, a dissection of the study in its own post is warranted.
First, let’s start with the source of the study. It originated from Harvard, and is “under review” for publication. But, its summaries were released to The Guardian and The Trace, which was the source cited by gun control groups Moms Demand Action and Everytown for Gun Safety. Of course Bloomberg owns The Trace… and funds MDA and Everytown entirely. Beyond funding his gun control groups, Bloomberg spends obscenely on political campaigns that are anti-gun focused, outspending the NRA by at least double, probably closer to triple. Why would Harvard selectively release its study to these outlets, who are known to be heavily biased towards gun control? Perhaps they are worried that a general release would allow the gun rights outlets to pick up on and dissect the study?
Upon examination of the full study, it seems that is the case. ZeroHedge, who I seem to cite so frequently these days, got its hands on the full report and put together its own charts from it. Notably, they were only able to do so a few days after the anti-gun and MSM outlets had put the “Super-gun-owner” headline out to the public to quote on Facebook and Twitter. Not only did they chart the surge in guns per U.S. adult since 2008…
…they charted the surge in gun purchases, with charts constructed using Harvard’s own figures.
And it should be obvious, the link between the increase in gun sales has directly coincided with President Obama taking office. The study is trying to state that 3% of Americans own 50% of the nation’s guns, and 78% don’t own a gun at all. Just using common sense shows how laughable the study is – with over 20 million background checks each year for the past three years, it seems Harvard’s study has gone in the face of basic arithmetic. With 20% of gun owners being first time buyers, someone needs to ask Harvard, Bloomberg and the MSM… are the “super-owners” they cite just buying firearms back from first time buyers? Most people I know won’t admit to a complete stranger on the phone that they own a gun; are the survey participants answering truthfully? And, with all these purchases and new gun owners, how did so many guns all of a sudden wind up in the hands of so few people?
Simply put… they didn’t. You’ll notice that the study cited a figure of 22% of the U.S. population owning guns. As I cited in my very first article ever at Single Dude Travel, anywhere between 32 and 45 percent of households have a gun, depending on which figure you cite. It seems as though what this study really did was reduce the access of firearms to gun owners themselves. Which is quite amusing, if you take a closer look at some of the “super-gun-owners” the study references.
While the study did point out the obvious, that conservative veterans in rural areas were the most likely people to own guns, it failed to do any further investigation into gun owners themselves. Unsurprisingly, many household members besides the owner have access to a home’s firearms. This should be obvious, as there are plenty of examples of children using firearms to defend their family home, sometimes using lethal force against invaders. An equivalent study on home ownership would state that a home ownership rate of ~65% in the U.S. means that ~35% of people have no access to a place to live.
After all, 25 firearms at an average price of $750 each is $18,750… and that is before you buy ammo, cases, safes, and all the other firearm essentials and accessories. If you estimate the cost of a “super” gun collection at $25,000… that is about 9 million people devoting a significant source of funds to firearms. It just doesn’t add up.
And so, the gun control crowd has condensed gun accessibility by conflating it with ownership, and reduced the overall number of persons with firearm access by 10-20% prior to calculating anything. And in the process of inflating their statistics, they have vilified Americans with large gun collections, and in doing so, have demonstrated their own bigoted nature. As I have stated in another prior article for Single Dude Travel, 99.9% of gun owners aren’t radical crazies who want to ruthlessly kill people. If Muslims deserve to have their rights protected and not be demonized because of the actions of a select few, how does the same not apply to gun owners? The gun control crowd has shown its true colors by type-casting gun owners as murderous crazies, without any thought into why someone would own that many firearms in the first place.
I am not a “super-gun-owner” – far from it. I know many gun owners, and a very small percentage of them have the requisite number to be considered one. However, this article got me thinking about a gun collection… and it sure is something to aspire to. Hopefully one day, I will have enough different firearms that I can not only pick whatever I please to practice and train with, but I can have plenty available for gun proficient family and friends should the need ever arise.
I’ll let you know when I get there. Unless you’re a Harvard surveyor, in which case… I lost them all in a boating accident.