Guns are still an issue in debate in US society. Photo/Reuters
WASHINGTON – Weapons are deeply ingrained in United States (US) society. It is also always a political debate in the country.
The Second Amendment to the US Constitution guarantees the right to bear arms, and about one-third of American adults say they personally own a gun.
At the same time, in response to concerns such as rising gun deaths and mass shootings, President Joe Biden has proposed gun policy legislation that would expand a bipartisan gun safety bill that Congress passed last year.
Here are 10 key findings about Americans’ views on gun ownership, gun policy and other issues, drawn primarily from a Pew Research Center survey conducted in June 2023.
1. 4 in 10 Americans Own a Gun
About four in ten US adults say they live in a household with a gun, including 32% who say they personally own a gun. These numbers have barely changed since we last asked this question in 2021.
There are differences in gun ownership rates based on political affiliation, gender, community type, and other factors.
Republicans and Republican-leaning independents are twice as likely to say they own a firearm compared with Democrats and Democratic groups (45% vs. 20%).
40% of men say they own a gun, compared with 25% of women.
47% of adults living in rural areas report that they own a firearm, as do smaller shares of those living in suburban (30%) or urban (20%) areas.
38% of white Americans own a gun, compared with smaller groups of blacks (24%), Hispanics (20%) and Asians (10%).
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2. Weapons for Self-Defense