Boom: Americans now agree that gun ownership makes homes safer

Who was it that was just recently saying that, eventually, liberal policies always wind up taking over the country? Opinions among Americans clearly do shift over time, but when it comes to our Second Amendment rights, the drift seems to be decidedly in one direction, and Andrew Malcolm reports that it’s clearly not toward the nanny state.

Bang! For the first time, a growing — and already substantial — majority of Americans now believe having a gun in the home makes it a safer place to live.

Put that in your chamber and cock it.

Gallup, which has been surveying the politically volatile question for a generation, announced this morning a new poll revealing that nearly two-out-of-three Americans (63%) now say having a firearm there makes a home safer.

That’s nearly twice the number who said that just before 9/11.

And the explosion of support has come across all political boundaries. Back in the fall of 2000, barely a third thought that (35%), while a majority (51%) said guns made homes more dangerous.

But the number who say guns increase home safety has been steadily increasing while the number who see them as increasing danger has been steadily declining — from 35% in 2000 to 42% four years later to 47% in 2006 and now a jump all the way up to 63%.

The Gallup poll also reveals a closing of the gender gap. Men have traditionally been more comfortable with firearms as an enabler of home defense, but now 67% of men and 58% of women are answering in the affirmative.

As with so many other subjects, education has been key to this question and will continue to be in the future. One of the strongest arguments for those opposed to Second Amendment rights are the high profile, tragic stories of children who get hold of unsecured guns and wind up injuring themselves or others. There is, of course, no excuse for these tragedies taking place. But better education has resulted in more gun owners being made aware of when and how to best secure their firearms. This applies whether or not children live in the home or simply visit on occasion. Nearly all of these incidents could be prevented with proper precautions and common sense.

So the results of the poll are heartening, but there will always be more work to do. People like Michael Bloomberg will continue to flush huge sums of cash into public scare tactic campaigns to try to drive lawmakers further into the arms of the gun grabbers. But it doesn’t seem to be sinking in, thankfully. The backlash of media alarmist opportunism after Newtown won them some victories on the local level in the short term, but I can not believe that the nation at large will tolerate it in the long run.