Americans Back Gun Restrictions, Says New Poll
A new Ipsos/Reuters Poll has found strong support from Americans for restrictions on gun ownership and where they can be carried.
91% of those surveyed agreed on the need for background checks before a firearm can be sold. Only 6% said they thought gun ownership should require no or very few restrictions.
Nearly three-quarters of respondents said they supported limiting the sale of automatic weapons, and 62% oppose bringing firearms into churches, workplaces or stores. 69% supported laws like those recently repealed in Virginia that limit the number of guns someone can purchase in a given time frame.
However, nearly half of those surveyed felt crime rates were rising where they lived — even though FBI statistics show violent crime is declining. And most of those surveyed said they supported laws that allow Americans to use deadly force to protect themselves from danger in their own home or in a public place.
87% supported the use of deadly force to protect themselves from danger in their home.
Two-thirds said they backed laws permitting the use of deadly force to protect themselves in public.
“Americans do hold to this idea that people should be allowed to defend themselves and using deadly force is fine, in those circumstances. In the theoretical … there’s a certain tolerance of vigilantism.”
The survey included 650 Republicans, 752 Democrats and 520 independents. The precision of the Reuters/Ipsos online poll is measured using a credibility interval and this poll has a credibility interval of plus or minus 2.6 percentage points for all respondents.
Next week, victims of gun violence will converge on Capitol Hill to challenge Congressional leaders and members to keeps guns out of the hands of dangerous people.
The lobbying effort is linked to the anniversaries of the mass shootings at Virginia Tech and Columbine High School. It is led by Colin Goddard, who survived being shot four times in 2007, and includes Tom Mauser, whose 15-year-old son Daniel was killed in the Columbine High School massacre on April 20, 1999, and Sherialyn Byrdsong, whose husband Ricky was killed on July 2, 1999 by a white supremacist.
“Time and again after high-profile shootings, we’ve heard members of Congress say that now is not the ‘appropriate’ time to discuss legislation to prevent these tragedies. Well, 32 Americans are murdered every single day in this country. We want to know: When will it be ‘appropriate’ to talk about keeping us safe? We are tired of living with the tragedy of gun violence, and we want Congress to act now to protect us and keep guns out of the hands of dangerous people. We won’t rest until they do.”
Brady Campaign President Dan Gross said that thousands of Americans are dead “because the gun lobby has made it easy for dangerous people to get, carry, and use guns.”
The Brady Campaign is organizing to stop bills it’s calling the “George Zimmerman Armed Vigilante Act.” The Senate bills, similar to one which passed the House late last year, would allow dangerous people to carry guns anywhere in the US, even though those states’ concealed carry laws would make it highly unlikely that someone like Zimmerman would be granted a permit to carry a gun in public.
Picture by TW Collins