Gun Ownership Declining?

That’s what the Bradys are saying. I’ve never lent much credence to polling data on household gun ownership. Most gun owners I know, in response to a question about whether they own guns from some anonymous person calling them would be “none of your business,” if they didn’t just hang up the phone right there. I’m not saying gun ownership by household hasn’t declined, just that I’m skeptical of polling. Attitudes of gun owners, in terms of how they are perceived by others, and the nature of gun ownership, has changed quite a bit since 1977. Along similar lines, I wouldn’t be surprised if you find more people who would tell pollsters they are a gay household than you would in 1977. Does that mean there are more gays now?

I don’t think we really have a good idea what household gun ownership really is, because of a tendency of people to under report. The Bradys, through their multi-decade effort to stigmatize gun ownership, probably have more to do with these numbers than they are taking credit for.

12 thoughts on “Gun Ownership Declining?”

  1. Oh, for goodness sake…..WTF are they smoking? With record private sales of firearms since the zero’s coronation how the hell can these scum-suckers publish this? And how can media swallow it?

  2. And, in looking at the post: Way to go, Paul, in your attempts to reach out to Glenn Beck listeners who are trying to do the right thing! I happen to be one of those listeners, and while I didn’t attend his “Restoring Honor” rally, I listened to bits on the radio, and I mostly agree with what Glenn Beck is trying to do: restore honor, and honesty, and other values that our Republic is founded upon.

    If you’re going to attack that, why should I bother listening to you?

    (Oh, and I say “mostly agree” because there was a thing or two–I can’t quite remember what–that I disagreed with from the bits of Glenn’s event that I was able to listen to.)

  3. Oh, and I agree with Sebastian: I think a lot of people would rather not participate in surveys anymore, which makes polling a lot more difficult. While there are many ways to get “bias” in a survey, one especially difficult type of bias to deal with is “non-response” bias–people who refuse to respond, so you have no idea what they represent, or often why they refuse…and no way to figure that out, either.

  4. Joan Peterson of the Brady Campaign asked:
    “8. Do you believe it is O.K. to call people with whom you disagree liars and demeaning names?”

    But the Brady Campaign said:
    “The NRA’s latest lie is just an updated twist on the old one that more guns equal less crime.”

    Perhaps that question has been answered?

  5. Well, so many have bought so many guns for so long, I suppose the market might taper off. I mean, how many can we all own? Answer: Oh, heck, one more.
    Having joked about it, I don’t see how anyone could possibly, honestly suggest that gun sales are declining.

  6. I work in a gun store and i can tell you we are seeing the purchasing of guns going through the roof every day

  7. Yeah, firearms ownership is declining so badly that it’s just a matter of time until the Brady Center becomes a federal agency. Could happen any day now! I hear they’re going to take the statue of Jefferson out of the Jefferson Memorial and put a statue of Sarah and crippled Jim in his wheelchair in there instead. Rename it the Brady Memorial. Or maybe not.

  8. How many guns would you have to admit to before they called the cops on your ARSENAL?

  9. I remember reading a study that compared the “How many guns are in your home” answer from women and from men–and concluded a lot of women either did not want to admit that there was a gun in the house, did not know that there was a gun in the house, or had mentally blotted that knowledge out.

    My father-in-law got hitched for the third time some years back. We went to the wedding, of course. They had been cohabitating for many months by this point. As we said good-bye that night, I casually asked my father-in-law, “So, Dick, did you ever get around to buying a gun?” (He had been talking about it.)

    “Sure, a Beretta 92. Let me get it out.”

    At this point, his bride looks at him as though he had said, “Sure, I have a saber-tooth cat in the closet. I’ll let him out to sharpen his teeth.”

    He insisted that he had told her about it; she insisted that she did not remember him telling her.

  10. Keep in mind that it’s not just fear of social disapproval that causes gun owners to under-report. It’s also a healthy dose of paranoia. The gun owners that I know tend to be suspicious of the motives of people who ask things like this.

    When I say “healthy dose,” I’m not being sarcastic. It’s a good thing both pragmatically and philosophically to make sure that nobody ever knows exactly how many guns are in private hands or how they’re distributed.

  11. Kendrick is correct, it’s no ones business how many guns someone has, where they are or what kind of guns they are.

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