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The number of U.S. women who say household has a gun hits record high

October 26, 2011 |  5:42 pm

Women_guns
The number of U.S. women who say their household possesses a gun is at a record high. A Gallup poll on Wednesday said 43% of American women reported a gun in their home or somewhere on their property. That number is up seven percentage points, from 36% in 2010.

Men were even more likely to say their household has a gun. This year 52% of men reported a gun in their house or on their property -- also seven points higher than in 2010, when 45% said so.

The gender gap is more pronounced when people are asked who owns the gun. Twice as many men as women say they own a gun -- 46% of men, 23% of women.

These results come from Gallup's Oct. 6-9 crime poll, which also found that public support for Americans' right to bear arms has hit an all-time high. When asked whether there should be a law banning possession of handguns, nearly three-quarters said they opposed such a law. A little more than a quarter supported such a law.

It's unclear, however, whether more households actually have guns. Perhaps more people feel comfortable admitting that they do. 

Some other interesting details from the report:

  • 47% of Americans report they have a gun in their home or elsewhere on their property. That's the highest number Gallup has recorded since 1993, when 54% said so.
  • 55% of Republicans admit having a gun on their property, compared with 40% of Democrats. But that gap is shrinking. Last year, 52% of Republicans said they had a gun on the property, compared with 32% of Democrats.
  • Education level plays a role in whether someone owns a gun. According to Gallup, 29% of college graduates say they personally own a gun, compared with 40% of those without a college degree.

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--Deborah Netburn

Photo: Mount Holyoke student Sabrina Clark, 21, takes aim at a firing range near the women's college in Massachusetts. Credit:  Robert E. Klein / For the Los Angeles Times

 

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