Professor Shibley Telhami, director of the Critical Issues Poll released a new article on the latest findings from the March 27-April 5, 2023 Critical Issues Poll with Ipsos on American attitudes on gun violence. Here are the three main takeaways:
- US-born and Foreign-born respondents differ markedly in their attitudes
Those born outside the US were more likely to express views in support of greater gun restrictions compared to those born in the US. Of those foreign-born respondents, only 14% believed that tighter school security was the most likely to reduce gun violence against children, while 33% said fewer guns would do so and 42% said both equally. In comparison, 32% of those born in the US said that gun violence against children would be reduced by tighter security, 19% said by fewer guns, and 28% by both equally. While 64% of foreign-born respondents said stricter gun control would lead to fewer mass shootings, 49% of US-born respondents said the same.
- Attitudes vary more by race and education than by age
When looking at the impact of guns on crime rates, Black Americans were more likely to say that if more Americans owned guns there would be more crime (41%) or that it would make no difference (46%) than White Americans (28% and 40%, respectively). Hispanic Americans were in the middle (38% and 29%, respectively). In comparison, Americans of different age groups did not vary as largely in their views. Thirty-seven percent of those under 30 years old said that if Americans owned more guns there would be more crime, and 38% said it would make no difference, compared to 33% and 39%, respectively, of Americans 30 years of age and older.
- The partisan gap on the impact of guns on crime has widened since 2021
When asked about whether stricter requirements to legally obtain a gun would cause fewer mass shootings or more, only 34% of Republicans said it would cause fewer mass shootings, compared to 80% of Democrats. Most Republicans (58%) said it would make no difference in the number of mass shootings, compared to only 16% of Democrats. In addition, whereas 55% of Republicans said that tighter school security was more likely to reduce gun violence against children, only 8% of Democrats felt the same, with 43% saying fewer guns in the community would be more effective.
The full analysis of the three takeaways, including graphs, can be found at the link below.