Moms Demand Action: Which Is Greater–500 or 760,000?

As the U.S. Senate takes up gun legislation in Washington, DC , Dr. Gary Lampert (L), a co-owner of the National Armory gun store, helps Cristiana Verro consider fire arms on April 11, 2013 in Pompano Beach, Florida.
Joe Raedle/Getty Images/AFP

On August 12, Moms Demand Action responded to examples of mothers using guns for self-defense by asking which happens more often–self-defense gun uses or criminal attacks with firearms.

The list of mothers who used guns for self-defense was compiled by the NRA and focused on examples of mothers defending their own lives and the lives of their children. Some of the defensive gun uses took place at home while intruders were rushing the mothers. Another took place on the street where a mom used a concealed carry handgun to defend herself and her son.

Moms Demand Action responded to these real-life stories by posting the “real story of a dad using a gun to kill his family” and asked, “Which happens more often?”

According to the Center for American Progress, “6,410 women were murdered in the United States by an intimate partner using a gun” from 2001 through 2012. That works to about 500 murders a year by intimate partners–which is more than the number murdered by spouses alone.

Like all murders, each of these 500 a year is tragic. But this number literally pales in comparison to the number of lives saved through the use of guns in self-defense each year. In February 2015, approximately 22 years after beginning scholarly work on defensive gun uses each year, Florida State criminologist Gary Kleck confirmed that 760,000 defensive gun uses a year is the number no one has been able to refute.

So Moms Demand Action asks which happens more often–self-defense gun uses or attacks with guns. The answer is as clear as the difference between 500 and 760,000.

Follow AWR Hawkins on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at


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