Who is buying all these guns—and why?
The short, broad-brush answer to the first part of that question is this: men, who on average possess almost twice the number of guns female owners do. But not all men. Some groups of men are much more avid gun consumers than others. The American citizen most likely to own a gun is a white male—but not just any white guy. According to a growing number of scientific studies, the kind of man who stockpiles weapons or applies for a concealed-carry license meets a very specific profile.
These are men who are anxious about their ability to protect their families, insecure about their place in the job market, and beset by racial fears. They tend to be less educated. For the most part, they don’t appear to be religious—and, suggests one study, faith seems to reduce their attachment to guns. In fact, stockpiling guns seems to be a symptom of a much deeper crisis in meaning and purpose in their lives. Taken together, these studies describe a population that is struggling to find a new story—one in which they are once again the heroes.
I find it interesting that every person in my sample of gun owners fails to match the profile they give on almost every one of the negative characteristics they claim dominate. Some might match on one negative characteristic, and some on another, but none that I can think of match on more than one. I wonder how they obtained their sample and how many gun owners claimed to not be a gun owner and avoided participating with their study.
And, if someone claims this is justification for implementing gun control, this is an admission that gun control is sexist and racist.
In any case, this is what they think of you. Let them keep thinking this. It will be a bigger surprise for them when reality smacks them in the face.
Live in middle to lower class, diverse neighborhoods. Also, have families to protect, and therefore married with children.
Lower and middle class.
Aware of racial / criminal correlations (a.k.a. reality)
Not credentialed professionals (i.e., middle or lower class, as noted above.)
Implied meaning from the Scientific American author;
“Ignorant, emotionally unstable, desperate, racist hicks, ready to snap at any minute and do God-only-knows-what with all those guns”
Yep; here come the “mental health” screening requirements. I hope you all like what you get. Many gun owners have supported the idea (which proves they’re unfit…hmmm).
Who, after all, can oppose the idea of keeping guns out of the hands of crazy people (the mentally “unfit”)?
Suckers; you failed to realize that the “crazy people” are, by definition, all the gun owners; they’re you and me. Now here we have “science” confirming it, and who after all can argue against “science”?
Heh! These authoritarian revolutionaries (sailing under the false flag, “scientists”) are brilliant, even if they are thoroughly predictable.
But I disagree with the post’s title. It’s not what they think of us. It’s what they’re trying to get other people to think of us, so that eventually they disarm us without too much opposition, with some semblance of a mandate for hammering us into the ground.
I agree 100 %. The fact that you own or want to own a gun will be considered a mental illness. They will have a DSM code for it soon, I bet.
Check the archives of the USSR and “gun ownership” and I suspect that you will find it is a “Mental health condition that require firearms confiscation” (which is a neat little bit of circular reasoning).
The DSM 6 edition would have had it for sure if the Hildabeast had been elected.
One more thing…carefully lie to all health care professionals about firearms ownership, even tangentially.
The use of Electronic Health Records (EHRs), Health Information Exchanges (HIEs) and Electronic Clinical Quality Measures (ECQMs) means that admissions and information surrogates will be used to glean firearms ownership.
Then a law will be passed that those who have a certain diagnosis or psychotropic medication use will be barred from possession.
Getting tested for lead levels just became more “interesting”.
“…interesting that every person in sample of gun owners fails to match the profile…”
I’m not sure what a “person in sample of” might be. If I am sampling some things, them I’m a “person sampling”, but is that the same being a “person in sample of”?
If I read farther, then the usage apparently means “every person [that I know] in [some particular] sample of gun owners…”
Let’s see as it applies to me.
White, yup, born this way,
Male, yup, see above,
Desire to protect my self and family, yup who doesn’t,
Beset by racial fears, nope
Insecure about my place in job market, Nope, retired, also see below,
Less educated, Nope BS in engineering, PE License,
Not religious, Nope, strong faith just not affiliated with an organized church,
“much deeper crisis in meaning and purpose of their lives” WTF does this mean?
To attach the adjective “Scientific” to thees opinion driven “studies” is laughable to anyone who actually understands the scientific method.. Once a respectable magazine, “Scientific American” has sunk to the level of “People” or “National Enquirer.”
I’m in a very similar category, only I’m not religious (and haven’t been since I was a teen) and I have a PhD in physics.
I certainly don’t have any sort of deeper conflict or crisis in my life, am reasonably confident that my job (nuclear-related research) is stable and secure going forward (and if it isn’t, I have other skills and resources to fall back on), am not racist, am married with two young kids, etc.
Dont get me wrong: I’m sure there’s plenty of examples of kooky, uneducated, in-crisis racists who own guns, as there are in all sufficiently large samples, but I would be genuinely surprised if they comprised a bigger fraction of gun owners than they do of the population as a whole.
Fascinating article. There’s that three percent number again. Hmmm…
This article counters the mainstream “reasonable” argument that gun ownership is decreasing (because, as we all know, inalienable rights can be revoked when they become unpopular).
I could try to point out the fallacious reasoning in the article, and also show the several areas where I diverge from their flawed model. But I’d rather just run over this asshole with my truck.
I’m getting really tired of having spent the first half of my life going to college and trying to better myself, and the second half making a living, being awarded patents and asked to speak at major conferences, and enjoying the building and shooting of firearms, only to be told I’m a valueless, amoral, hick. If these morons think that gun owners buy out of anxiety, then perhaps they might ratchet down the accusations – for the primary reason for panic buying today isn’t for fear of invasion by Negros, Koreans, or women – most of whom I get along with just great. The concern behind gun sales today – particularly repeat gun sales – is that our rights (and not just gun) are being affronted by shrill, mostly lily-white, overeducated poindexters.
I was also considering responding to the multitude of logical fallacies in the article but I am exhausted with countering this garbage. It’s like singing to a pig. It wastes my time and annoys the pig.
I bought several firearms as a direct response to the Obama-era hints at firearm restrictions.
Did they ask the question…Are you buying guns to shoot leftist scum when they try to nullify the Second Amendment and then the rest of the BOR at their leisure?
If you bought firearms as a result of Obama stating he wanted to outlaw firearms then you fit the Scientific American’s definition of being beset by racial fears.
I believe I fit the criteria:
I am a white skinned mixture of ancestry.
I am anxious about protecting my family, and I believe that any father/husband who does not recognize this as his responsibility is not a man.
The job market for my skillset is limited and so preparing for job loss is always a high priority for me. If I lost my income I would use a firearm to harvest every animal in the forest to feed my family if necessary.
The article equates previous concerns about Obama’s motivations to being “beset by racial fears”, so by their definition I am apparently beset by racial fears. Personally, I fear fascism, communism, violent criminals & terrorists, and to the extent that violent criminal communists have coopted racial rights movements like black lives matter and have begun employing fascist, terrorizing tactics to violently assault and terrorize their opposition then I suppose I am concerned about that too.
I only have an AAS, which by Scientific American’s definition makes me uneducated. I earn upper middle class wages in an enjoyable career field while many of my former classmates, who ate the lie we were all fed in public school that we would never earn a real living unless we have a minimim of a 4-year degree, tread water in a sea of debt while working unrewarding menial jobs.
I have faith but am not religious in the sense that I prefer family study over attendance at a church and I do not adhere to mainstream Christian culture which I believe has become diseased.
I want my activities to have meaning and purpose, and I try to limit my time spent in activities with no benefit to my or my family’s education, development, strength, profit, or wellbeing. Firearms are a component of all of those categories except it does not seem to be very profitable 🙂
There hasn’t been much science in “Scientific American” since the early ’90’s when they went all-in on global/climate whatever-it’s-called-these-days.
I’m surprised they didn’t mention “Sluggish Schizophrenia”, that catch-all darling diagnosis of the Soviet Union.
“Both Froese and Stroud found pervasive anti-government sentiments among their study participants. “This is interesting because these men tend to see themselves as devoted patriots, but make a distinction between the federal government and the ‘nation,’ says Froese. “On that point, I expect that many in this group see the ‘nation’ as being white.”
Gee, much bias there?
It won’t be just wanting to own a gun that proves we are unfit to own guns, it will be belief in self reliance, Constitutional limits on what politicians do (except for those with the scarlet “R” after their names who must play by every rule real or imagined) and the idea that help can only come from the government.
We’ll all be in the asylums with Andre Sakharov and the other dissidents before long.
Government’s coercive power is their God, and technology coming out of government/business partnerships (Fascism) is their Water of Life. Thus any true Americans, regardless of race, are blasphemers. There is no greater enmity than what they have for us, and they’ll forget all about their credibility, their education, common decency and all the rest, if they can but smite us a little.
These (BS) trends of course, don’t include young black men who don’t fill out fascist, NRA approved, ATF forms. The closer you are to the threat the better your core understanding of the right of self defense. Millionaire ivory tower activists like LaPierre have less of an understanding of a fundamental need for weapons than Darnell living in the projects. Ask any young black man if we should be allowed to have guns and he’ll look at you like you’re a retard. Ask any rich white man and he’ll sound like a retard.
Retired owner of a company.
Not racist, homophobic, or anything else.
But I do own more golf clubs than long guns.
So do I fit the ‘studies’?
Are golf clubs penis extensions too?
Actually I’m told that if you’re white and you say you’re not racist it means you’re a racist.
The author’s byline I’d very telling
“Jeremy Adam Smith is editor of Greater Good magazine and author or co-editor of four books, including The Compassionate Instinct and Are We Born Racist?”
Greater Good magazine is a UC Berkeley publication, and I can find no references to his scientific background or education history.
I’m sure he has a few degrees, but the fact that nobody seems to reference them is very telling.
I haven’t read Sci Am in quite a while. It’s clear now that this decision was the correct one. What a disgusting scumbag bigot. Sci Am is clearly utterly lost, beyond all possibility of repair.