Harvard study: 38 million Americans own handguns, 9 million carry regularly

by WorldTribune Staff, February 22, 2018

Of the 38 million Americans who own handguns, 9 million carry a loaded firearm at least monthly and 3 million do so every day, according to a study by Harvard University and the University of Washington.

The study, published in the American Journal of Public Health, found:

  • More than 80 percent of those who carried loaded guns said they did it primarily for protection.
  • Most grew up in a firearm-owning household.
  • Most have been threatened with a firearm within the past five years.
  • Four out of five people who carried loaded guns had a concealed carry permit, which are not required in all states to carry a weapon.
  • The study found little difference between gun owners who carried loaded firearms and those who did not in terms of race, education, household income, veteran status and whether children were present at home.

Washington Examiner columnist Paul Bedard noted that “Recent shootings and concerns about terrorism have driven a surge in Americans obtaining their concealed carry permit and pistols. The rush has been especially noticeable among women and African Americans.”

Justin Anderson, the marketing director of Hyatt Guns in Charlotte, North Carolina, told Bedard the current political and legal climate in the nation plays a role.

“More importantly is the overall atmosphere in the country. I have never seen a more divided nation. That division breeds fear and fear has always been a driver of increased gun sales. In addition, you have terrorist incidents, uncertainty about North Korea, mass shootings, and threats of violent crime.”

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