Saturday, December 22, 2012

"There are no guns in my house" and why the Gallup Poll takers and the politicians don't understand the nature of the problem.

A full-page story appeared today in the Kentucky Enquirer on gun ownership titled: "Guns Here and in America" written by Kimball Perry. It contains a lot of information derived from polls taken over the years by the noted Gallup survey company.  The gist of the story was contained in this single paragraph:
Gallup has polled Americans since 1959 about whether they had a gun in their home. When the pollster last asked the question in fall 2011, 45 percent of U.S. households said yes – beneath the high of 50 percent in 1968, but a steady increase from the low of 34 percent in 1996. But the 2011 version of the National Opinion Research Center's influential General Social Survey showed gun ownership at 32.3 percent of U.S. households, a steady drop from 49.1 percent of households with guns in 1973.
My apologies.
Yesterday, I received an email from a reader with a genuinely sincere criticism over my attempt to explain the figures I quoted from the Kentucky Enquirer story. I took another look at what I wrote and spotted the places he did not understand and it seems the mistake was partially mine. I have rewritten the paragraph and replaced the original with the following three paragraphs below.

According to the published story in the Enquirer, two different survey groups have been tracking gun ownership in America and the numbers from both groups were referenced in the story. What was missing from the story was a timeline that associated an event with the yearly poll results. The Gallup polls indicate that by 1968, 50% of Americans admitted to having a gun in their homes, (but omits the detail that this was the year the first gun control laws were passed that created the BATF Firearms Transaction Record, form 4473) but then by 1996 only 34% said they had a gun in their homes (also failing to mention this was when the Assault Rifle ban was passed) so Gallup missed the clue that some people polled were possibly denying their gun ownership. Then in 2011 Gallup's gun poll came up with 45% of respondents admitting they had a gun in their home. Assuming some people were still giving untruthful responses, the increase could be accounted for by the surge in gun purchases made after the 2008 election of Barack Hussein Obama, a fact that has been widely reported in the mainstream news media.

But another polling group, the National Opinion Research Center's General Social Survey, claims its poll says gun ownership dropped even further in 2011 to 32.3%, "a steady drop from 49.1% of household with guns in 1973." The difference between these two polling groups is almost 13%.

Two theories could be given to account for these numbers. One may be that Gallup is a more recognizable name than the National Opinion Research Center so possibly more people surveyed were open to give Gallup more candid replies about their guns. Secondly, there is still the question of a growing lack of trust for the government so even more people were hiding the truth from both poll takers as the years went by. After all, each of time-line points were associated with an increase in government restrictions on guns.  I went to the Gallup web site to see what else it said on the subject and found this little disclaimer at the bottom of the page, "In addition to sampling error, question wording and practical difficulties in conducting surveys can introduce error or bias into the findings of public opinion polls." No further explanations were given. While that disclaimer may be for a general purpose, I suspect that it simply means that not every answer to the poll takers questions were truthful. The bold truth is that gun ownership has been surging within the last 10 years while gun owners have been increasingly distrustful of the government and has probably been on a gradual increase since 1968. Since most survey polls resort to simple Yes or No answers, I have never read of any poll that included the option of "None of your business" as a choice.

From talking to others about gun ownership and mainly from reading comments posted on the Internet it seems that there is a large number of people who do not trust the government with their personal information and likewise do not trust random phone calls from poll takers. So the polls taken over the years asking people if they own a gun need to have a few additional elements written into their algorithms to be accurate. Such as:
1. How many people hung up the phone when you asked this question?
2. How many people declined to participate in the telephone survey all together?
3. How many people were aware that the survey was about gun ownership before they were asked any questions?
4. How many people actually gave honest answers?

The earliest doubt concerning government knowledge of private gun ownership began during the Clinton administration when the so-called Assault Weapon ban was passed. Law abiding citizens know that they are no threat to public safety and they also know that criminals will always find a way to get their hands on guns and would never register them if that became a requirement. The old adage: When guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns" is a perfect example. The numbers of people who were concerned over government confiscation of privately owned guns dramatically increased following 9-11 and the passage of The Patriot Act, which became the first attack on our Bill of Rights. When the Democrats nominated Barack Hussein Obama in 2008 and his background involvement with communists and terrorists became public knowledge, gun owners began to dread the day when he got elected. Even though Obama often said he supported the Second Amendment, most conservatives did not believe him. For many years there has been a widespread belief that America would one day follow the path to totalitarian dictatorship and like past history elsewhere the first act would be the disarming of our citizens. Because of these fears, I strongly believe that many, if not most, gun owners would be very reluctant to tell anyone except another gun owner about their guns. Regarding the gathering of information on gun ownership, with the advent of electronic record keeping and government intrusion into health care, people are talking about a rather uncomfortable question they have recently been asked by their family doctors: Do you have a gun in your house? It is widely known that the Federal government will soon, if not now, be able to access your personal medical records and those questions and answers recorded by your doctor are becoming very suspicious. So once again, if people are forewarned to look out for it, they will not be revealing anything.

While it is true that most guns being purchased today are being bought by people who already own guns, there are still many first-time gun buyers because more and more people are realizing that something terrible is about to happen. These people are not just the so-called Survivalists that stock up a year's worth of food or go off the grid, they are ordinary people who read the news every day. So one more question that the poll takers haven't asked is: Have you just bought your first gun? I think that in light of the surge in gun purchases in the last four years that the honest answer to that is quite significant. It wasn't without some biting truth that our Marxist/Socialist leader Barack Hussein Obama was awarded the distinction of The Best Gun Salesman of the Year.
The first salvo on the anticipated move to confiscate guns was reported yesterday on the web site Townhall. It has been widely suspected that more Democrats across the country will be echoing similar sentiments.

New York Governor: Gun Confiscation on the Table

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is getting his gun control proposals ready and they're looking pretty unconstitutional.
He added that he was focusing his attention on changing state laws restricting the possession of assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition magazines. The governor described the state’s existing ban on those items as having “more holes than Swiss cheese.”

“I don’t think legitimate sportsmen are going to say, ‘I need an assault weapon to go hunting,’ ” he said. At the same time, he noted that he owns a shotgun that he has used for hunting, and said, “There is a balance here — I understand the rights of gun owners; I understand the rights of hunters.”

In the interview, Mr. Cuomo did not offer specifics about the measures he might propose, but, while discussing assault weapons, he said: “Confiscation could be an option. Mandatory sale to the state could be an option. Permitting could be an option — keep your gun but permit it.
Barack Hussein Obama, while lying about his support for the Second Amendment, has been very supportive of the upcoming United Nations Small Arms Treaty that he is expected to try and ram through the U.S. Senate for approval. Obama needs this U.N. treaty so he can absolve himself of the guilt of being personally responsible for disarming our citizens. All he was looking for was an excuse to do so and the tragic events last week at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut was just what he needed. If he is unable to get 2/3 of the Senate to approve the treaty he may well try to implement some form of gun control through one of his favorite Executive Orders. Obama has already declared that Congress seems to be an impediment to his legislation demands and he would like to bypass them completely.
The new polls being taken now on the public approval of gun control will come in the midst of the emotional onslaught being broadcast on a daily basis by the leftist news media. The purpose of the polls is to influence the Congress in their moment of passion so they will likely contain twisted and biased results. After all, if you don't ask the right questions you won't get the right answers, if anyone wants to answer truthfully. All of this following the recent affirmations by the U.S. Supreme Court on the rights of citizens in America to own firearms would seem very contradictory. Virtually nothing is being said about the cases supported by the ACLU on the so-called "rights" of mentally ill people to be kept out of mental hospitals or off some registration lists that would be checked before a gun purchase is made. And while some areas are discussing placing a police officer in every school, a very expensive proposal that most districts could not afford, little else is being said about have some designated school employees trained and armed with a gun as a last resort. That suggestion most likely contradicts the phobia most academics have about guns and zero-tolerance policies.
Beware of the false prophets from the NRA.
Yesterday, NRA Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre rejected calls for more gun restrictions, and instead stated that "gun-free" zones made schools less safe by inviting criminals with guns into unprotected areas. He said, quite correctly , "The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun." But what he did not say was far more important. The influential NRA that has been habitually supportive of numerous Democrats who have promised to support the Second Amendment. The NRA was responsible for giving numerical control of Congress in 2008 to the Democratic Party through their endorsements of 53 candidates. Read more here. They tried again in 2010 but by then the TEA Party movement limited the NRA success to only 21 Democrats. Two years ago I discovered that within the past history of the NRA there have been times when the NRA publicly stated support for various kinds of gun control. I wrote here in August 2010 about a web site that contains a complete reprint of the March 1968 issue of American Rifleman, the official publication of the NRA, that confirmed this. Read my blog post:
Friday, August 13, 2010

The short history of the NRA: When you dance with the Devil you will get burned.

A few days ago while researching the gun control issue and the involvement of the NRA I came across a web site that had reprinted the entire article from the March 1968 issue of the American Rifleman. The source for this reprint is:
Here are some highlights from the American Rifleman, March 1968 issue article to perk your interest:
"The NRA supported The National Firearms Act of 1934 which taxes and requires registration of such firearms as machine guns, sawed-off rifles and sawed-off shotguns..."
—American Rifleman
March 1968, P. 22
"The NRA supported The Federal Firearms Act of 1938, which regulates interstate and foreign commerce in firearms and pistol or revolver ammunition..."
—American Rifleman
March 1968, P. 22
"The National Rifle Association has been in support of workable, enforceable gun control legislation since its very inception in 1871."
—NRA Executive Vice President Franklin L. Orth
NRA's American Rifleman Magazine, March 1968, P. 22
The NRA is a great supporter of the Second Amendment and they have sponsored many useful laws such as The Castle Doctrine, but many people suspect that one goal of the NRA is that in the event of the national registration of all firearms, they would like to see themselves designated as the exclusive proprietors of every local gun club where gun owners would be required to store their guns if they were prohibited from being kept their homes. This is, by the way, the policy in Great Britain and I believe it is the fail safe plan of the NRA.
My name is Nelson Abdullah and I am Oldironsides. I became a Life Member of the NRA in 1968 and elevated to Benefactor level. In 2010 I resigned and am now a Life Member of the Gun Owners of America.


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