Tags: Gun Rights | firearm ownership | home security | hunting

Studies: Guns Now Bought More for Security Than Hunting

Image: Studies: Guns Now Bought More for Security Than Hunting
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By    |   Tuesday, 10 Mar 2015 02:49 PM

The number of Americans who share their household with a gun is lower than ever, a new General Social Survey from NORC at the University of Chicago finds.

However, the number of Americans owning guns is on the increase, other studies state, indicating that more guns are owned by fewer people, NBC News reports.

The NORC study found that "31 percent of households reported having a firearm in 2014, essentially tying with 2010 for the lowest level of gun ownership in the last 40-some years. This is a decline of about 17 percentage points from the peak ownership years in 1977-1980."

The study found that in 2010 and 2014, "about 32 percent of adults" either owned a handgun or lived with someone who does. "This was a decline of almost 19 percentage points from an average of 51.2 percent in 1976-1982."

However, a Gallup poll in 2014 disagrees, noting that household ownership of guns stands at around 42 percent, meaning that about 134 million Americans have a gun in their home.

While the NORC poll found that 22 percent of Americans own a firearm, a drop from 31 percent in 1985, the latest Gallup poll in 2014 found that 30 percent own a gun.

NORC notes the decline in the number of homes with guns in them likely traces to a decline in the number of Americans involved in hunting.

"One of the main reasons for the decline in household firearm ownership is the decrease in the popularity of hunting," NORC states.

"In 2014, only 15.4 percent of adults lived in households in which they, their spouse, or both were hunters. This is the lowest level of hunters since the highest level of 31.6 percent adults being hunters or married to a hunter in 1977."

The purpose of owning firearms apparently is changing, from hunting to personal defense.

The National Crime Prevention Research Center reports that the number of concealed carry permits increased from 4.6 million in 2007 to over 11.1 million in 2014.

"The sale of guns accelerated further over the last two years, averaging 14 million during 2008 to 2011 and over 20 million during 2012 and 2013," the group reports.

NORC found that white gun ownership was higher, at 39 percent, than black gun ownership, 36 percent, or Hispanic gun ownership, at 15.2 percent.

Higher income makes it more likely that respondents would own a firearm. In households with an income below $25,000, ownership was at 18.2 percent, rising to 44 percent for households earning above $90,000.

Gun ownership is more common among men than women, with 35.1 percent of men reporting gun ownership, a decline from 50.3 percent in 1980, and 11.7 percent for woman, an increase from 10.1 percent in 1980.

Age was another important factor in gun ownership. Only 14 percent of those under 35 years of age reported owning a firearm, whereas 30.4 percent of those over 65 reported owning a gun.

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The number of Americans who share their household with a gun is lower than ever, a new General Social Survey from NORC at the University of Chicago finds.
firearm ownership, home security, hunting
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2015-49-10
Tuesday, 10 Mar 2015 02:49 PM
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