What is being touted as “the most definitive portrait of US gun ownership in two decades” is the backbone of a series of stories in recent days by The Guardian and The Trace, and now is a good time to ask why there is such attention to firearms and people who own them.
A Guardian story also says that 133 million of those guns “are concentrated in the hands of just 3% of American adults – a group of super-owners who have amassed an average of 17 guns each.” This remark is based on an “unpublished Harvard/Northeastern survey result summary” supplied to both publications
According to The Guardian, “Americans own an estimated 265m guns, more than one gun for every American adult.”
Now is a good time to ask why is that anyone’s business? The Second Amendment doesn’t say anything about the right to keep and bear registered arms. There is also no mention of the number of arms a person has a right to keep. If some stranger from a university asked if you own guns and how many, would you volunteer that information or decline to answer?
A key to all of this might be found in a Pew Research survey published more than two years ago. That survey revealed that 49 percent of survey respondents identified as Republicans, 37 percent were Independents and only 22 percent were Democrats. Likewise, 41 percent of those gun owners identified themselves as conservatives, 36 percent were moderates and only 23 percent were liberals.
But back to the initial issue: Are you a “super gun owner?” How many firearms do you own?
More importantly, though, is another question: Would you admit this to a researcher from Harvard and Northeastern universities, and why?
Considering the 2014 Pew findings liberal Democrats are in the minority when it comes to gun ownership. However, a look at history over the past 50 years shows that segment of the population increasingly bent on dictating gun policy that affects everyone else. They want to regulate the exercise of a right that they only marginally exercise, themselves.
They’ve managed to get away with it because, it appears, far too many gun owning Republicans and Moderates don’t vote, and in some cases, vote for the very people who have been slowly choking down on their gun rights.
This November provides an opportunity for all of these self-disenfranchised voting gun owners to do something about that.