Guns are as American as apple pie with huge stocks like Smith & Wesson. But unlike pie, they kill hundreds of innocent American children every year. When it comes to a subject that carries such morbidity and seriousness, being informed is essential. This Thursday, we are not spotlighting an industry. We are using spotlighting guns and what matters when it comes to them: the facts.
1. Most gun owners support common sense gun reform.
Over 85 percent of gun owners support universal background checks, compared to 83 percent of non–gun owners.
2. Gun ownership is falling, yet there are more guns being produced than ever before.
In 1986, slightly less than 50 percent of American households had guns. New gun production was approximately 3 million units annually with limited excess stock. This figure stayed relatively steady until the mid-2000s, when it suddenly skyrocketed, along with the stocks of gun companies.
Today, only about 40 percent of households own a gun. Since 2012, the number of new guns appearing each year has risen to over 12 million.
3. Only in the US do we react to mass shootings by relaxing gun laws.
After the 2012 Sandy Hook massacre, 93 laws were passed in 27 different states liberalizing gun laws. These laws allowed citizens to bring firearms them into churches, schools, and use them in self defense while intoxicated. Consequentially, school gun deaths in the US more than doubled. It went from 17 in the 18 months before Sandy Hook to 41 in the 18 months after.
Ironically, stocks in gun companies increases after mass shootings as the public anticipates substantial gun reform.
4. The US has ⅓ of the world’s mass shootings.
And only 5 percent of the global population. That 5 percent however, own more than 40 percent of privately owned guns in the world.
5. Your likelihood of being murdered dramatically increases if you live in a state with lax gun laws.
This is particularly true if you’re a law enforcement officer. Studies show that cops are far more likely to be killed on duty in pro-gun states.
6. While gun homicides command media attention, suicide is the number one type of gun-related death in the US.
Comprising over 60 percent of gun deaths, suicides outnumber homicides, mass shootings, gang violence, and accidents by a long shot.
7. Americans’ primary reason for owning a gun is protection.
48 percent cited protection while just 32 percent cited hunting. In 1999, 49 percent of Americans said hunting was the main reason they owned a gun. Only 26 percent said protection. Violent crime and murder rates are significantly lower today than they were in 1999.
8. The NRA spends more money opposing its opponents than supporting its allies.
This explains why the NRA’s direct political contributions are low relative to the amount of political power the group wields. According to UCLA law professor Adam Winkler, “Politicians don’t listen to the NRA simply because they spend money. They listen to the NRA because the NRA’s money is effectively spent swaying voters.”
In case you missed it… Check out our recent post about the G20 and if global leaders (and investors) are chasing an elusive dream
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