42% Of Private Firearms Are Handguns, Says NY Times
By Dave Workman
The perennially anti-gun New York Times recently published a remarkably balanced story about guns in America, and right out of the gate — probably no surprise to American Handgunner readers — the newspaper noted that 42 percent of the country’s privately-owned firearms are handguns.
That’s up from 34 percent in 1994, the story added. Of the remainder, 33 percent are rifles and 20 percent are shotguns.
Here’s another revelation that probably startled Times readers while it shouldn’t surprise anyone else: Personal protection is the primary reason people own guns, an impressive 63 percent, according to the Times. Another 20 percent have guns for protection from animals. That’s important in states where there are “things with teeth” roaming around anywhere off the pavement, whether it’s bears, wolves or mountain lions, feral dogs or some other predator.
Forty percent of gun owners also own firearms for hunting, and 28 percent own them for “sporting use.” And 34 percent of those gun owners have gun collections.
What does all this mean? For starters, there are a lot of guns in the United States, and according to the Times story, applications for concealed carry licenses and permits “have hit records in some places.” Still, the crime rates have been declining over the past 20 years.
The story also asserted that the percentage of households with guns has declined from 25 percent to 22 percent since 1994, but then it added, “In 1994, about 44 million Americans owned 192 million guns. Today, about 55 million Americans own 265 million guns.”
It should not take a pocket calculator to figure out that 55 million American gun owners is a larger number than 44 million American gun owners 22 years ago. Evidently there are just more “households” than there were two decades ago, and those 11 million additional gun owners must live with other gun owners.
Taking Gun Control To A New Low
The gun prohibition lobby has a habit of reaching for the low ground, and a recent video campaign called “Toddlers Kill” may have found a new depth.
Described by NBC News as a “tongue-in-cheek” message, nobody seemed to be laughing when the 60-second video depicted small children handling handguns began circulating on social media. Produced by a New York advertising agency for the anti-gun Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, “Toddlers Kill” appeared only days after USA Today reported that the Associated Press and USA Today Network released an analysis asserting that “minors are dying from accidental shootings at a pace of one every other day nationwide during the first half of this year. That’s a far greater pace than indicated by federal data.”
But wait a minute! NBC News also reported that “Researchers say that the number of accidental firearms deaths — among children and overall — has been declining steadily.”
“Shootings involving small children is a tiny percentage of the total number of shootings in America,” NBC News said. “Of the 33,599 people shot to death in 2014, the last year for which government data is available, 56 were children ages 3 and younger.”
Break out the pocket calculator. Fifty-six child fatalities is certainly 56 too many, but that figure amounts to a fraction of all the firearms-related deaths reported in 2014.
Of all those firearms-related fatalities in the United States in 2014, a whopping 21,334 were suicides (63.5%) and 10,945 were homicides (32.6%). But once again, all firearms deaths are being lumped together to create a more dramatic number and make it seem that there is a criminal bloodbath in progress, when that is hardly the case.
Into this controversy jumped Alan Gottlieb, head of the Second Amendment Foundation, with an interesting idea.
“What about teaching firearms safety as part of the public school curriculum,” Gottlieb suggested. “Why is that strategy never part of an effort to reduce firearms accidents among our youth? If you look up the term ‘gun safety,’ you will find that the leaders in that field are gun rights organizations, not lobbying groups that want to discourage firearms ownership or erode our rights under the Second Amendment.”
Some People Just Don’t Like Gun Owners
With more than 14 million legally-armed citizens amongst us, there are opportunities for anti-gunners to do some really stupid things to demonstrate their displeasure, but this story pushes is strictly Twilight Zone material.
A 59-year-old Overland Park, Kansas man was charged with aggravated battery in Johnson County District Court because he allegedly got upset that another fellow was carrying a concealed handgun.
But he didn’t stop at just being upset. According to the Kansas City Star, our model citizen grabbed the other man’s pistol, aimed at him and a third guy, and then shot the gun owner in the leg. Yeah, they do arrest you for that sort of thing.
Woman described as ‘fierce gun control advocate’ fatally shot…by cop
A New York woman identified by the New York Post as Deborah Danner reportedly “assailed gun violence and racism in tweets,” the newspaper said.
So when she was shot dead by a New York cop after allegedly charging at him with a baseball bat, that was news.
The newspaper quoted several of her tweets, which covered topics ranging from aging to racism. One of those messages read, “Wherever this Life’s Journey leads and whatever happens, I GO DOWN FIGHTING!!!!”
What Would Col. Sanders Say About This?
We’ve heard of people attacking other people with baseball bats, crowbars, frying pans, rolling pins, bowling pins, hat pins, hard hats and all kinds of other potentially dangerous weapons but Chicago cops recently busted a guy for attacking a transit authority bus driver and a passenger with a bag of frozen chicken.
According to WGN, the fowl deed was the handiwork of a 27-year-old guy who climbed aboard the bus and quickly tried to flirt with a woman passenger. The lady apparently didn’t want any of it, so our would-be Romeo whacked her with the bag of chicken.
The bus driver rushed to her rescue and he caught a few wings and drumsticks right in the face. The injuries were bad enough that he reportedly needed gum surgery.
There’s a postscript to this tale. WGN noted that the suspect in this case, was sentenced in 2014 to two years in prison for having made a bomb threat on a Chicago bus.
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