Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Charts reveal opinions over time about gun control

One day after another shooting -- this one left 13 people dead in Washington D.C., including the shooter -- "Democrats and gun control activists are already pushing for another look at the nation’s gun laws," Aaron Blake reports for The Washington Post. But despite several shootings in recent years, the public still doesn't see guns and violence as one of the most important issues facing the U.S., with a Gallup poll from May finding that only 55 percent of respondents see gun violence as a high priority, ranking the issue 11th on the list, well behind the No. 1 choice, creating more jobs, which 86 percent said should be a top priority. Why is gun violence so low on the list? Using a series of charts, the Post takes a look at the public's thoughts on gun violence, and whether or not people feel the country needs stricter gun laws. (Gallup Organization graphic)
Public support for stricter gun controls dropped considerably from 1990 to 2012, just before the December, 2012 shooting in Newtown, Conn., that left 28 dead. (Pew Research graphic)

While more people supported gun control directly after the Newtown shooting, the numbers changed considerably six months later, when people were asked if it was more important to protects the rights of gun owners or for there to be more gun control. (Pew graphic)
Polling also showed that more people saw the Newtown shooting as an isolated incident of a troubled individual, and that gun culture isn't the problem as much as mental health issues and more broader problems. (Post graphic)
"While polls showed overwhelming support for increased background checks (upwards of 90 percent) after Newtown, gun-rights advocates were far more vocal than gun-control supporters," Blake reports. "In fact, despite the tilt in public support toward background checks, anti-gun control messages were just as frequent as pro-gun control messages on Twitter until the very end of the Senate debate." (Read more) (Pew graphic)

No comments: