This article first appeared at TheNewAmerican.com on Monday, November 10, 2014:
The latest Gallup Poll results announced on Friday that, for the first time since 2006, a majority of Americans think having a gun at home makes their home safer. Further, the gain is all across the board, politically and demographically. The poll results also serve to diminish still further the likelihood of additional gun control measures by governments, local and federal, as more and more Americans now have a vested interest in gun freedom.
According to Gallup, the percentage of Americans who believe having a gun at home makes the home safer has nearly doubled just since 2000, from 35 percent to 63 percent, while the number of those who think that the presence of a gun at home makes it more dangerous has fallen from
51 percent to 30 percent. As might be expected, Republicans are about twice as likely as Democrats to believe that having a gun at home makes it safer (81 percent to 41 percent), but any gender gap in the belief has nearly disappeared: 67 percent of men and 58 percent of women polled believe having a gun makes a home safer, while whites (65 percent) and nonwhites (56 percent) also agree.
Across the country, geographical differences still exist, but appear to be diminishing also. In the East and the West, 59 percent of those polled think a gun at home makes it safer; in the Midwest, 62 percent do, while 68 percent of those in the South think so.
Gallup asked a follow-up question: “Do you have a gun in your home?” and 42 percent of those polled said “yes.” Forty-seven percent of men and 38 percent of women said “yes.” Thirty-one percent of those living in the East said they had a gun at home, while in the West 39 percent said “yes.” In the Midwest 44 percent said “yes,” and 51 percent of those in the South said they had a gun in their home. Said Gallup: “The percentage of Americans who say that having a gun in the home makes that household safer has drastically climbed over the past eight years.”
The Gallup Poll confirms other related gun studies released over the past 18 months, including those from the Department of justice, Pew Research, and the Congressional Research Service. According to the DOJ's Bureau of Justice statistics, U.S. gun-related homicides dropped by 39 percent from 1993 to 2011, while non-fatal firearm crimes plummeted an astonishing 69 percent. Pew Research conducted a 20-year study which showed a 49-percent decline in the homicide rate and a 75-percent decline in non-fatal violent crime.
These results no doubt give John Lott, author of the well-known book More Guns, Less Crime (last updated in 2010), comfort that his conclusions are correct: States that allow concealed carry permits show a steady and predictable decline in violent crime, whether at home or not. Lott explained that this is not only empirical but logical as well: As more citizens arm themselves, they will be less likely to be attacked, as criminals will fear being met by armed resistance.
The Congressional Research Service (CRS) looked at the issue from a slightly different perspective, but came up with the same result. In 1993 the “firearm-related murder and non-negligent homicide” rate was 6.6 for every 100,000 Americans, but by 2011 that rate had been cut in half, to 3.2. As Breitbart.com last December, “After all of the pro-gun control grandstanding and the relentless focus on how the so-called easy availability of guns drives up crime, [this] CRS report shows that more guns … has actually correlated with less crime.”
The Gallup Poll results coincided with the announcement by the United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs that its totalitarian Arms Trade Treaty will go into effect, at least for the 54 countries that have thus far ratified it, the day before Christmas. Fortunately, that treaty is DOA at the Senate during its lame duck session as well as the upcoming 114th Congress to be sworn in in January. As internationalists push for gun control, Americans are pushing back not only at the ballot box but at the gun store as well.