Tuesday, April 22, 2008

GUN OWNERS LESS BITTER THAN NON-OWNERS

WALL ST JOURNAL - According to the 2006 General Social Survey, which has tracked gun ownership since 1973, 34% of American homes have guns in them. . . It turns out they have the same level of formal education as nongun owners, on average. Furthermore, they earn 32% more per year than non-owners. Americans with guns are neither a small nor downtrodden group. Nor are they "bitter." In 2006, 36% of gun owners said they were "very happy," while 9% were "not too happy." Meanwhile, only 30% of people without guns were very happy, and 16% were not too happy.

The gun-owning happiness gap exists on both sides of the political aisle. Gun-owning Republicans are more likely than non-owning Republicans to be very happy (46% to 37%). Democrats with guns are slightly likelier than Democrats without guns to be very happy as well (32% to 29%). Similarly, holding income constant, one still finds that gun owners are happiest. . .

Many studies over the years have shown that a belief in one's control over the environment dramatically adds to happiness. Example: a famous study of elderly nursing home patients in the 1970s. It showed dramatic improvements in life satisfaction from elements of control as seemingly insignificant as being able to care for one's plants.

In 2002, [gun owners] were more likely to give money to charity than people without guns (83% to 75%). This charity gap doesn't reflect their somewhat higher incomes. Gun owners were also more likely to give in other ways, such as donating blood. Are gun owners unsentimental? In 2004, they were more likely than those without guns to strongly agree that they would "endure all things" for the one they loved (45% to 37%).

1 Comments:

At April 22, 2008 4:31 PM, Blogger werouious said...

not to be too cynical or sarcastic, but maybe the gun owners who would have responded "very unhappy" have gone off and killed themselves? my understanding is that suicide is more prevalent than murder, and no method is as certain as using a firearm.

 

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