Protection Is the Main Reason for Most American Gun Owners

Most gun owners in the U.S. say they own a gun for protection, according to a Pew Research Center report released on August 16. 

More than any other reason, protection (72%) was cited as the main reason they own a gun. While many gun owners (71%) say they “enjoy having a gun,” more Americans (81%) say that owning a gun makes them feel safer. 

The other reasons given for owning a gun were for hunting, for sport shooting, as part of a gun collection and for their job.

Nearly a third (32%) of those surveyed say they personally own a gun. According to the report, “four-in-ten men say they own a gun, compared with a quarter of women.” 

The report also found that the respondents felt differently about guns based on whether they owned a gun or did not own a gun but were in a gun-owning household. When asked if they felt safer owning a gun or having a gun in the home, 81% agreed compared to 57% of non-gun owners.

Non-gun owners are divided on whether they would purchase a gun in the future, with 57% saying “I could never see myself owning a gun” and 47% saying “I could see myself owning a gun in the future.”

This perspective is a slight change from Pew’s

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