Women have emerged as one of the fastest-growing demographics of new gun buyers and concealed carry permit holders in the country, and in the process, they have become a driving force in the shift in American attitudes from pro-gun control to pro-gun rights.
In January, The San Diego Union-Tribune reported that “women [are] buying more guns than ever.” And the result of this surge in women gun buyers has been an expansion of firearms and firearms accessories made to cater to the female market.
Many of the accessories are often designed and marketed by fellow women gun owners.
This growing participation of women in firearm purchases and firearm-related activities has not happened overnight. Rather, it has been steadily increasing over a number of years. For example, the National Shooting Sports Foundation found that 2011 and 2012 showed the surge beginning with a “79 percent … increase in female” customers buying firearms and/or firearm accessories. The trend has continued from that point.
Now, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports that this is not only providing new markets for the gun industry and expanding the number of concealed carry permits issued to women, but also impacting Americans’ views on guns and gun rights.
In late 2012–immediately following the heinous attack on Sandy Hook Elementary School–there was greater support for gun control than for gun rights. In fact, there had been a greater support for gun control over gun rights for more than 20 years. And this held true through January 2013. Then things began to shift.
On parallel with growing female gun ownership, increasing numbers of women applying for concealed carry permits, and burgeoning women involvement in shooting sports, support for gun control has dwindled. Thus, whereas only “45 percent” of the American people supported gun rights in January 2013 while “51 percent” supported gun control, the numbers have now shifted to “52 percent” support for gun rights and only “46 percent” support for gun control.
Interestingly, the shift in women’s attitude in favor of guns has taken place during years when groups like Bloomberg-funded Moms Demand Action have worked their hardest to get moms to vote against the Second Amendment.
Follow AWR Hawkins on Twitter @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at email@example.com.