Tuesday, June 21, 2011

The wussification of America

This graph shows the percent of U.S. households that have at least one firearm (GSS data). From 1973 to 2010, the figure has dropped from 48 to 32 percent. Over the period, ownership has fallen by one-third. This is another indicator of the country's move in a liberal direction.


bgc said...

"The Hobbits named it the Shire, as the region of the authority of their Thain, and a district of well-ordered business; and there in that pleasant corner of the world they plied their well-ordered business of living, and they heeded less and less the world outside where dark things moved, until they came to think that peace and plenty were the rule in Middle-earth and the right of all sensible folk. They forgot or ignored what little they had ever known of the Guardians, and of the labours of those that made possible the long peace of the Shire. They were, in fact, sheltered, but they had ceased to remember it."

Prologue to Lord of the Rings, JRR Tolkien.

Son of Brock Landers said...

Inductivist - Have you seen the NY Times household web tool? This might explain the drop in households with a gun. There are more households headed up by single women now than in 1973. It doesn't explain the entire gap, but that could be a sizeable chunk of it. I kind of view owning a gun for home defense (I own one), and families are more likely to have one than just a single person let alone a single female.


great quote BGC!

ironrailsironweights said...

It's also more difficult for people to own guns due to gun control laws.


Jehu said...

The number of guns sold in the US since Obama took office has been truly massive. In addition, Clinton was an incredible gun salesman also.
What you're missing is that's a question I will ALWAYS lie on, and frankly, I'll get angry at the survey person just for asking. It's a basic question of operational security. Enough people feel the same that asking that question as a doctor is illegal in Florida now. Given the number of guns sold I find it more likely that the propensity to BS the survey is what has actually increased.

Ron Guhname said...

Son: Makes sense. Nowadays a significantly lower percent of households involve a man protecting a woman and/or children. Hunting and target shooting are on the decline as well.

Jehu: I did notice that the number of people who refused to answer the question grew a little over the four decades. Of course, we can't tell from the data if dishonest self-reporting has been growing.

IHTG said...


Is there any way for you to graph people's average "Open to experience" trait over time?

Jehu said...

People with operational security concerns absolutely HATE that question, because we know that 'refuse to answer' will be interpreted as yes. Therefore if we don't want to leak information to the question, we have to lie, and many of us hate that.

Jim Bowery said...

Thou shalt not kill (unless authorized to by a duly constituted authority).

sykes.1 said...

The Sixth Commandment is properly translated "You shall not murder." If your copy reads otherwise, throw it away.

There is a big difference between killing and murder. The Old Testament is full of justified killings.

bgc's Hobbit quote is perfect.

Anyone who is a Hobbit/Lord of the Rings fan should read Fleming Rutledge's "The Battle for Middle-earth" (2004, Eerdmans, Grand Rapids, MI).

Anonymous said...

There is a big difference between killing and murder. The Old Testament is full of justified killings.

"Justified killings" are those authorized by a duly constituted authority.

Anonymous said...

"Justified killings" are those authorized by a duly constituted authority."

That includes the authority of a man to defend his household or even his person.

Anonymous said...

That includes the authority of a man to defend his household or even his person.

That depends on whether the particular "man" in question is a duly constituted authority himself or has been authorized by a duly constituted authority.

ntk said...

As I suspected, the surge in firearms sales in recent years mostly seems to have been people who already had one or more firearms anyway.

Mercer said...

I think it is due to the decline of the rural population.

If you live in a city or suburb it is illegal to practice shooting in your home, firing ranges are not cheap or nearby and hunting areas are even farther away. Why buy something you can't use anywhere convenient to you?

I think one way to change the situation would be to make suppressors easier to get. If suppressors were common then firing ranges requiring them would be economically viable. Communities would approve quiet ranges much more readily.

Jim Bowery said...

sykes writes: The Old Testament is full of justified killings.

Yeah, like when Moses had Israelites who sided with him kill those who did not.

Jeremiah said...

Little doubt, the dude is completely just.
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Kristopher said...

This can't succeed as a matter of fact, that is exactly what I believe.
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