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Amy Swearer is a legal policy analyst at the Meese Center for Legal and Judicial Studies at The Heritage Foundation.
Peyton Smith is a member of the Young Leaders Program at The Heritage Foundation.
Lawmakers - Country - Restrictions - Ability - Americans
As lawmakers around the country moved to impose restrictions on the ability of law-abiding Americans to keep and bear arms, some of those same citizens spent the first month of 2019 proving that armed civilians play an important role in defending the inalienable rights to life, liberty, and property.
Gun ownership surveys routinely find that about 1 in 3 American adults personally own firearms, meaning that tens of millions of law-abiding citizens regularly choose to exercise their Second Amendment rights.
Surveys - Percent - Gun - Owners - Firearms
Recent surveys indicate that 60 percent of these gun owners possess firearms primarily to protect themselves and others from crime.
These concerns are not misguided. A 2013 report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention authorized by the Obama administration examined comprehensive studies of defensive gun use. It concluded that Americans use their firearms in defense of themselves or others between 500,000 and 3 million times every year.
Report - Studies - Injury - Rates - Crime
The report also noted that studies “have found consistently lower injury rates among gun-using crime victims compared with victims who used other self-protective strategies.”
The month of January was replete with highly publicized examples of these defensive uses of guns:
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Jan. 2: The security officer of a grocery store in Loomis, California, confronted a couple suspected of shoplifting. When one of them pulled a knife and tried to stab the security guard, a good Samaritan with a concealed weapons permit drew his firearm, stopped the confrontation, and held the couple at the scene until law enforcement arrived.
Jan. 7: A private security officer in Huntsville, Alabama, prevented a potential mass shooting by shooting a nightclub patron who—angry at having been removed from the club—returned while firing...
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