According to a new Gallup poll, a large majority of Americans say they feel safer when more people are carrying concealed handguns, shootinsportsretailer.com reports. According to the Gallup poll, 56 percent of those surveyed say more concealed carriers is a good thing, while 41 percent say they’d feel less safe. The poll also showed 50 percent of women say they’d feel safer.
Divisions along party lines were clear, with nearly 70 percent of Democrats saying they’d feel less safe with more concealed carriers. The poll also asked Americans whether stricter background checks would help stop mass shootings, with 31 percent saying more checks wouldn’t help at all.
“All of this research supports the conclusion that Americans believe they should be allowed to own and carry guns, but with more stringent background checks,” Gallup concluded. “Americans are inclined to believe that carrying properly permitted guns could make the country safer.”
Last week also saw the Pew Research Center release new figures on incidents of violence involving firearms. Firearm-related homicides have dropped from 7 incidents per 100,000 people in 1993 to 3.6 per 100,000 people in 2013.
During the same time period, nonfatal violent incidents involving firearms dropped from 725.3/100K people in 1993 to 174.8/100K people in 2014.
Over the past 20 years, the number of guns owned by Americans has nearly doubled and the number of concealed-carry permit holders has nearly tripled since 2007. The Crime Prevention Research Center found that some 12.8 million people have CCW permits, up from 4.6 million in 2007. This doesn’t include individuals who carry in states where a separate permit to do so isn’t required, like Vermont.