Racism linked with gun ownership and opposition to gun control in white Americans

Woman with gunA new study has found that higher levels of racism in white Americans is associated with having a gun in the home and greater opposition to gun control policies.

The research, published in PLoS One, was led by Dr Kerry O’Brien from The University of Manchester and Monash University and used data from a large representative sample of white US voters.

After accounting for numerous other factors such as income, education and political ideology, the researchers found that for each one point increase (on a scale from one to five) in symbolic racism there was a 50 percent increase in the odds of having a gun in the home and a 28 percent increase in support for policies allowing people to carry concealed guns.

Each one point increase in symbolic racism (a modern measure of anti-black racism) was also associated with a 27 percent increase in the odds of opposing bans on hand guns in the home. After accounting for those who already had a gun in the home, the odds were reduced to a non-significant 17 percent increase. However, the authors note that this reduction is unsurprising as opposition to bans on guns equates to self interest on behalf of those who already own a gun and do not wish to give it up. And racism was already strongly associated with having a gun in the home.

The research was stimulated by gun control debates in the US after mass shootings such as the Sandy Hook tragedy, and research showing that with all things being equal black Americans are more likely to be shot than whites. The most recent figures show that there are approximately 38,000 gun related deaths in the US each year. With other research suggesting that having a gun in the home is related to a 2.7 and 4.8 fold increase in the risk of a member of that home dying from homicide or suicide, respectively.

Dr O’Brien said: “Coming from countries with strong gun control policies, and a 30-fold lower rate of gun-related homicides, we found the arguments for opposing gun control counterintuitive and somewhat illogical. For example, US whites oppose gun control to a far greater extent than do blacks, but whites are actually more likely to kill themselves with their guns, than be killed by someone else. Why would you keep them? So we decided to examine what social and psychological factors predict gun ownership and opposition to gun control.”

Conservatism, anti-government sentiment, party identification, being from a southern state, were also associated with opposition to gun controls, but the association between racism and the gun-related outcomes remained after accounting for these factors and other participant characteristics (age, education, income, gender).

Symbolic racism supplanted old-fashioned or overt/blatant racism which was associated with open support for race inequality and segregation under ‘Jim Crow Laws’, but it still captures the anti-black sentiment and traditional values that underpinned blatant racism. Symbolic racism has also been found to be related to stronger opposition to policies that may benefit blacks (e.g. welfare), and greater support for policies that seem to disadvantage blacks (e.g. longer prison sentences).

Study co-author Dr Dermot Lynott, from Lancaster University, said: “We were initially surprised that no one had studied this issue before; however, the US government cut research funding for gun-related research over decade and a half ago, so research in this area has been somewhat suppressed.”

Dr O’Brien said: “According to a Pew Research Center report the majority of white Americans support stricter gun control, but the results of our study suggest that those who oppose gun reform tend to have a stronger racial bias, tend to be politically and ideologically conservative and from southern states, and have higher anti-government sentiment.”

He added: “The study is a first step, but there needs to be more investment in empirical research around how racial bias may influence people’s policy decisions, particularly those policies that impact on the health and wellbeing of US citizens.”


  1. Avatar

    OMG…OMG…White people who own guns and support the 2nd amendment are RRRRRRRRRRAAAAAAAAYYYYYYYYCCCCCCCCIIIIIIIIIIIIIISSSSSSSSSSS.

    • Avatar


  2. Avatar
    The man with no name on

    You are just saying that because they are White people. You say you are anti-racist, but you are just anti-White. Anti-racist is a codeword for anti-White.

    • Avatar

      In white countries and white countries ONLY, is it somehow a good idea for law abiding people to give up their guns and lay down and submit (or better die) in the face of criminals. And only in white countries, is it not allowed to notice that those criminals are all non-whites.

      Any other country, this would be called ethnic cleansing, crimes against humanity and genocide. At a minimum, UN troops would be deployed to stop it. But, the long term solution would be arming the victims…..something considered necessary and good for all other races except white people. Arming white people, is considered “racist”.

      That is what being against racism has come to mean. It means to be against white people. To promote ethnic cleansing, crimes against humanity and genocide.

      Anti-racists are anti-white. And a major reason for every white person to arm themselves.

    • Avatar

      No it is not. A hate word is a slur that developed naturally and is rooted in bad behavior. It involves stereotypes. Those stereotypes often being true. Neither of these is true with regard to racist.

      Racism and racists are manufactured terms. Propaganda. They didn’t even have their etiology in applying to blacks or other races.

      This term was invented by Bolshevik jews back before the communist revolution. Jews were coming to russia in mass numbers and causing all sorts of political problems. They invented the term racism and used it much as they use the word anti-semite, today. Their propaganda was very successful in getting the russian population to tolerate them. Big mistake. Within a generation, American jews sent an incredibly large shipment of gold to russia to fund the overthrow of that government. It was actually stopped by a US navy vessel. Although completely illegal, it was allowed to pass (bribes obviously). A few years later, a well funded communist revolution overthrew russia. What followed was the cruel genocide of roughly 150 million innocent people at the hands of jewish Bolsheviks.

      Years later, American jews retrofitted the term to apply to black people.

      It is important to understand where the term comes from, who maintains it and what has been done with it in the past. What the consequences are of ignoring who is using it and what they intend.

      What happened in russia could easily happen here.

      Perhaps you are right. Racist is a hate word. But whose hate are we talking about? That question has a very specific answer that will probably lead to the next world war.

  3. Avatar

    I certainly hope so. The truth about race is that over half of all black males commit a victim based felony over their lifetimes….a rape, robbery, murder, or felonious assault. Mexicans are not far behind them, but have the added element of a literal invasion. Just ask them. They intend to carve a good chunk off the US and form a new country (Aztlan). They intend to genocide all non-mexicans from that area. Both groups are highly segregated in the US but both groups also go out of their way to hunt unprepared white victims. Neither mexicans nor blacks see this as crime…but as acts of war.

    The other side of that coin is, 3 million times a year a gun is used to stop a violent crime. And, for white people, commission of violent crime is at its lowest point in human history. In other words, that statement is more accurately read as, 3 million times a year, a WHITE person uses a gun to stop a violent crime, being committed by a non-white person.

    Obviously, RACE, and NOTHING ELSE, except race is the defining factor.

    So yes…I certainly hope “raycism” is linked to gun ownership and deployment and for forms an impenetrable wall against any gun control whatsoever. That is a reality based viewpoint with the intention of keeping resistance firmly rooted in real power.


  4. Avatar
    Roderick Bateman on

    Look at all this anti-whitism. In the 60’s, anti-whites forced ALL and ONLY white countries to bring in millions of non-whites. Then anti-whites forced ALL and ONLY white people to “integrate” or face penalties for being “naziswhowantokill6millionjews.” Now anti-whites are praising and counting down the days till ALL and ONLY white children are minorities and extinct EVERYWHERE. That makes it genocide. “Anti-racist” is a codeword for anti-white. /watch?v=lKDeyuM0-Og