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“The drop in violent crime has been extraordinary. When as a society we become more safe, there is less interest in owning a handgun, most of which are owned out of a concern for personal safety.” – James B. Jacobs in Millennials Aren’t That Into Guns — Unless It’s in a Video Game [via]

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  1. I doubt that. Seems to me mellenials are more into guns then their parents, a large part of that is due to video games and movies. I know quite a few who purposely bought a gun because they saw it in call of duty or walking dead.

    • I think you are correct. In my direct experience the ideological resistance to guns is less with the Millennial and Gen Z generations.

    • Just keep inviting the millenials to the range. Every one we convert possibly converts others with a nice compounding effect.

  2. …more crime, more firearm ownership
    …more firearm ownership, less crime
    …less crime, less firearm ownership
    …less firearm ownership, more crime

    …more crime, more firearm ownership
    …and so on

    Sounds like a closed servo loop that has reach stability.

    • Sort of just a supply and demand cycle. But I think Mr. Jacobs is kind of isolated in his thinking. When I was of the age of millennials, I only owned a shotgun and rifle and those were a gift and a inheritance. I was more interested in meeting women and later getting my life established and starting a family. That changed once those goals were achieved and my disposable income increased. And if millennials do ever climb out of the mountain of debt from student loans, they’ve been lead to believe is worth it, I think that will change for them too.

    • Like gasoline prices and high mileage vehicles. BTW – I finally do own a Prius, contrary to popular myth it was the even smaller 1st Gen Insight that I owned before. Having a Prius in the Mpls area is a really good way to blend in. Just about every other car is one. If I was going to commit a crime here in a car, it would be a Prius:-)

      • ” I finally do own a Prius, contrary to popular myth it was the even smaller 1st Gen Insight that I owned before.”

        You are getting a vanity license plate with ‘APM’ or ‘APM Mobile’ on it aren’t you?

        AREN’T YOU??? 😉

  3. Pigeonholing an entire generation, and expecting people to behave a certain way because of when they were born, is stupid. It’s just a different form of profiling or stereotyping, and it leads to incorrect assumptions and bad decisions.

    Individuals make individual decisions, based on individual circumstances and life experiences.

    • I dunno. I suspect there may be loose correlations for behavior of generations. In this case, it, as other commentors have been pointing out, is due differences in public schooling. Columbine among other shootings really has/had the teachers of the millennials worked up about the subject.

  4. Another journalist who has never looked at data. Violent crime is trending down. Gun ownership is trending up. His conclusion doesn’t follow. Of course we could argue that because media types like him constantly sensationalize every act of violence in this country, people feel less safe and therefore buy more guns. I guess we could say that the media is competing with Mr. Obama for the title of “Greatest Gun Salesman Ever.”

  5. Millennials are like everyone else. Some have guns. Others don’t. Being the parent of one, I think they are a bit naive about whether surrounding themselves with people their own age makes them any safer. They have been brainwashed in the public schools and by the MSM to be afraid of personal gun ownership. That is more the issue.

    • “They have been brainwashed in the public schools and by the MSM to be afraid of personal gun ownership.”

      Millennials have a *very big* problem with being lied to by authority figures.

      The louder the Left shrieks on how evil they are, the stronger the motivation to get one, once they get ‘woke’.

      All those FPS games will make a positive impression on them as well…

  6. I think millennials support the Democrat party more than older generations and as such are more likely to buy into civilian disarmament ideas. I’ve also been subject to ridicule that I own guns and support gun rights out of fear because I’m paranoid. We do live in a safer environment than ever (most of us). And so far I’ve never needed to use my gun in self defense and I hope to continue that path.

    My response is that I have life insurance because I’m afraid of dying and leaving my wife and kids without income. I own fire extinguishers because I’m afraid of my house burning down. I have health insurance because I’m afraid of medical bills I can’t afford. I lock my house and car doors because I’m afraid of being robbed. I put a large portion of my pay into retirement savings because I’m afraid of losing my standard of living when I retire. Taking measures to defend myself and my family against things I’m scared of keeps me FROM living in fear. And if they want to take some or all of those same measures to protect themselves, I won’t judge them like they try so hard to judge me.

    • Yep. According to most people, even most progressives, having various types of insurance, and fire extinguishers and wearing a seat belt because life is uncertain and sometimes dangerous is simply being a mature adult. But according to many of those same progressives, having, but especially carrying a firearm as insurance, because life is sometimes uncertain and even dangerous, makes you paranoid and fearful.

      Holding these two beliefs in the same skull seems like it would make the head explode.

    • Huh. You sound like a reasonable, rational person.
      “Hey, turn this guy in!”
      See something, say something…..

    • I take your point but permit me to quibble a little with your language.

      I wouldn’t classify most of those outcomes you mentioned as fears. Rather, they are acknowledged risks of undesirable outcomes you’re taking steps to prevent or mitigate.

      I’m not afraid that I might set the house on fire. If I were I’d never use the stove or light a candle. Rather, I see my house catching on fire as a low but not zero probability so to mitigate that risk I have a fire extinguisher in the kitchen.

      Similarly with gun ownership. Put into the context of risk mitigation, it’s harder to ridicule as it is a calculated mitigation of a low-but-not-zero, but highly impactful, event.

      Fear has contexts of a much less rational thought process and response. Doesn’t make it less valid or true, but when presenting concerns and contingencies as fears it’s much easier for someone else to dismiss them as paranoid. Just my experience anyway.

      • Fear is one of a very small set of primary emotions. It expresses itself in multiple fashions. Sports players get pumped up and mad before a game because anger is a very useful means of channeling fear of failure into a better chance of success. The use of the word fear as a pejorative has changed people’s perceptions of it. Fear is indeed very healthy if used as proper motivation to better oneself. It can also be crippling if used incorrectly.

        Phobia is closer to what you’re describing. An unhealthy and irrational level of fear about a specific item or idea. I don’t have a phobia for anything listed in this thread. But even the term “Healthy Respect” is just a way to classify a person’s level of fear. I have a healthy respect of fire because I know it can take lives and unchecked, it’s something that I’m quite afraid of. That doesn’t mean I won’t build a fire while camping or grill steaks for the family. But it is a fear that causes me to take precautions like owning a fire extinguisher and not pouring gasoline on an open flame.

        You may choose to use a different word than fear to describe the things you take precautions against. But no matter what you call the emotion, everyone should be afraid of the things that can take their life, harm their friends and family, or destroy their property. With any luck, the majority of people will use that fear to educate and protect themselves.

      • One of the big problems as I see it: people don’t use the same word to describe the emotion felt about potential problems they take precautions against.

        It’s common sense to shut down entire beaches over a single shark sighting? Most sharks aren’t ever seen. Shark attacks are really rare and such measures offer minimal protection.

        I’m far more likely to get robbed or attacked by a human than I am to get bit by a shark. And far more likely to successfully defend myself against robbery and attack if I’m armed (according to the CDC). But carrying a tool for said self defense is fear and paranoia?

        Bullshit. All preparations come from fear of that which might injure or kill you. Calling that emotion by different names such as “healthy respect” or “paranoia” is a mental defense mechanism where each person convinces themselves everything they do is reasonable, rational and intelligent. And when other people do more or less, it’s because they’re Unreasonable, Irrational, and not nearly as smart.

    • Wanna be ridiculed by not only friends and family but also by TTAG commentors for being paranoid and devoid of an understanding of statistics? Mention that you wear concealed armor.

      • Body armor can protect you from people behind you and out of sight. It doesn’t run out of ammo. It will never have a failure to feed, fire, or eject. You can never miss with it. It cannot have a negligent discharge. You can wear it into Federal buildings and schools where guns are restricted. Shit, I’m struggling to see why body armor is a bad idea. The best part of body armor is just how many companies are making concealable body armor. Like a concealable gun, what other people don’t know about you… isn’t their fucking business.

        Any ridicule you take is just another example of the mental gymnastics people perform to convince themselves that “every precaution I take is necessary and doesn’t come from fear”. And “every precaution you take that I don’t is because you’re paranoid and phobic”.

        I have yet to invest in body armor. But I guarantee you that if I get attacked today–no matter the outcome–I’ll wish after that I had been safer during the attack.

        • Basically, it seems that body armor provides a great deal of protection with zero liability and no training or additional investments required beyond the initial purchase. I love my guns. But they can’t match that

        • Scholagladitoria, is, in my opinion and excellent historical martial arts channel. Every so often Matt Easton the British fellow that runs it discusses defense against knife attacks. A good portion of the comments posit that defense against a knife ambush is hopeless. I can see where watching video of knife attacks would give one that impression. However, even in Brittan, as far as I can tell, armor is still legal to wear, yet I am the only one, of hundred of commentors, that ever mentions that concealed armor, even ballistic only, is likely an effective counter to those first few stabs that only an action hero would be able to counter otherwise. Like you, to me it seems a very prudent precaution for ambush attack. I am not at all sure I would be able to draw before I had received at least one stab (and more likely several) from a decent attacker. Thanks for letting me know that I am not alone in this line of thought.
          One drawback, is that IIIa soft armor is hotter than hell in unconditioned air in the summer. I keep my delivery car freezing cold to help mitigate that. I bought a very expensive vest rated highly for its thinness, low weight and comfort and it still just a little but uncomfortable.

        • ” Shit, I’m struggling to see why body armor is a bad idea.”

          It’s very heavy for daily wear, and must be replaced periodically.

          It’s downright miserable to wear in a hot-humid environment on a daily basis.

          Since it must be replaced periodically, an already expensive ballistic vest becomes ever more expensive over time.

          What did I miss?

        • I’d spend less on replacement panels for a vest disguised as a jacket than I would on bullets for my everyday carry. I shoot that thing everytime I go to the range no matter what. Furthermore, I seen a ton of IIIA vests cheaper than my CC, weighing in at 4 and 5lbs. I’ll give you that they’re hot, but I gotta disagree on the heavy part.

          Vests–in addition to being bullet proof–are fool proof. Put it on and it protects you. No need for permits, practice, or training. They’re failure proof. Can’t have a failure to feed, eject, or fire. They’re free of all liability. Can’t miss a bad guy and shoot a random by standard. Can’t have someone grapple and take it to use against you. Your kids can’t get it and hurt themselves with it. They’re wearable everywhere. There are no “Vest Free Zones”.

          Let’s at least be honest that body armor has a metric fuckton of advantages over a gun and someone taking that step to protect themselves isn’t anymore paranoid than a different person carrying a gun, or a gun and a backup piece.

          If 4lbs of weight is more than you’re willing to carry for that extra layer of protection, that’s cool. I won’t judge. We have 100+ degree heat here all week. I get it. But I’m also not going to hold it against someone who chooses to take that step.

        • Body armor has an expiration date because it is required by NIJ certification. Just because it is expired does not mean that it is ineffective. There have been scientific test conducted on Kevlar body armor that was 10-20 years old that still performed just fine.

        • Geoff PR – None of your points make it necessarily a bad idea. It depends on your circumstances.
          Mine weighs about 4lbs including the carrier. I doubt that that would seem heavy to very many men.
          Even if you replace them every five years which is the warranty length for most and get a $1,000 model (very expensive), that is only $200 per year. I spend way more than that on practice ammunition every year and I hand load almost all my ammo. It is also less than $17/mo.
          In the winter and in air-conditioning they are just barely uncomfortable, IMO. I don’t need to do long or strenuous activity outside in the summer so I rarely become over heated. I just wear it to public places and and when I am making drug deliveries. If you have to even just stand outside for long periods when it is hot and humid though, it is miserable for sure.

    • CNN ran a story titled “Millennials more conservative than you may think.” A paper found that millennials are more conservative than the previous two generations were at the same age. Some other “experts” argued that millennials are only as conservative as previous generations. One scholar’s reasoning is that the boomer generation was exceptionally liberal, and therefore skews the picture.

      Millennials may be more liberal than older generations, but the young have always been stupid and idealistic. If you are part of an older generation, then you were probably stupid and idealistic at one point.

      • I don’t trust CNN. Also, even if Millenials are more conservative than other generations had been when they were under 30… They’re still more inclined to vote Democrat than their elders are currently. Which makes them more inclined to disapprove guns

  7. It would seem to me that people who buy a firearm for self-defense are least likely to own more than 1 or 2 firearms. There has been a decrease in crime going back years if I’m not mistaken, and firearms sales continued to be strong throughout that time. Regardless of crime rate, it seems to me that most people buy guns due to the political situation. I doubt anyone who carries or keeps a gun around the house for protection isn’t going to stop doing so just because of decreasing crime rates. And I doubt that decrease solely influences people to not buy a gun.

    Their comments on millennials are interesting too. I am in the upper age range of that cohort, and I have been around guns my entire life and acquiring them since I was 16. I don’t think I can name one male friend that doesn’t have firearms, doesn’t play FPS games, and doesn’t participate in some type of outdoor sport (IPSC, hunting, fishing etc). I don’t know about other millennials, especially ones on the West Coast and large metropolitan areas, but millennial gun ownership is definitely strong in my NOTW. I no longer live there, but Charlotte was where I was born and raised and all of my more cosmopolitan friends that still live there either have a gun or have no issues with gun ownership.

  8. I’m going to stop calling them guns and start calling them crime extinguishers.

  9. There has been a lot of modern guns sold in the last decade. Maybe bought for protection or whatever, but these guns are owned by people. Guns are cheap enough to keep, even if you don’t carry or prctice much. Hopefully people will keep them locked away from any children they have, but the point here is they do own them. These are too expensive to throw away, but most people won’t have to sell them for a debt, especially after the cost of a safe and ammo.
    These guns are here to stay, to say nothing about the older ones around, even the collectables that still work.

  10. its no different than not too long ago someone suggesting the internet is making people stupid. when in reality it seems that way because stupid people are often the loudest. so on the internet where only “loud” media is propagated, it seems everyone is getting stupider. same with this. the cry baby idiot millennials are the loudest so it seems they are all that way. and just like any other demographic, there are some “flyers” that get the most attention.

    • The internet certainly hasn’t done much for my memory, when I can use my exocortex (aka smart phone) to store my friends’ phone numbers and addresses, look up information at a random whim, etc.

      Since it also had built in gps and navigation systems it’s also made my previously bad sense of direction even worse.

      • I just got rid of my “smart” phone. The screen was resistant to my every effort at swiping, pushing or prodding. For some reason I cannot use touch screens. Now my “dumb” phone is so easy and convenient to use I can now carry it (the smart phone was too big for my pockets) and I can actually answer phone calls. And everything works better – the sound is amazing, because the development costs weren’t put into internet usage. I have no use for any smart phone.

    • I’d have to agree with No One there. The brain is a muscle that has to be exercised. If you have to remember what you read at the library in order to write a paper back home, or what you read in a newspaper or encyclopedia to win an argument then you exercise your memory. Or learn long advanced math skills on pen and paper. If you can look it up on your phone in seconds… you don’t exercise your brain. Same for reading a map vs using GPS. Or any of the dozens of other ways the internet has changed life for everyone. It doesn’t mean people have less capacity inside the ole’ noggin. It DOES mean people aren’t using that capacity as much.

  11. Fifty years ago, my peers and I often used similar “reasoning” to explain the world around us. I attribute our lack of sophistication to youthful ignorance and smoking way too much dope. Little Jimmy may or may not be a dope fiend, but, he is no youngster. The nonsensical, rhyming word salad of the schizophrenic is a more apt comparison to the propaganda of these intolerant, anti-civil rights bigots.

    • okay, i’ll feed the troll. what the ever living fuck are you talking about? spew your garbage elsewhere.

    • You’d think that Jewish people, unless they are the ones trying to oppress, would be the last ones for civilian disarmament, much less rising to the level of gun-grabber. As though “Hitler didn’t finish”.

      It hasn’t even been 100 years yet people. The “Never Again” folks are trying to que themselves up (with the rest of us) for another batch.

      And I threw the b.s. flag on the fake poll and the structured comments, and I’m not picking it up.

  12. What is with the prejudice comments on Ttag?
    First blacks in the article on the NRA video, now against Jews
    Doesn’t Ttag moderate the comments to remove hate?
    I am a Jewish gun owner and agree that the conclusion “there is less interest in owning a handgun” is false
    Handgun sales have been setting records year after year as crime has gone down
    Jewish people in general have nothing to do with this author in particular

    • Of the comments I’ve read, there was only one that can be taken as anti-semitic. It was from a poster who often says crazy, incomprehensible things. (That’s why I say can be taken as anti-semitic instead of is anti-semitic. I never know what he means).

      To answer your “What is with the prejudice comments on Ttag?” question, it’s the internet. We had two guys talking about how it is more rational to where armor than it is to carry. You get all kinds.

      • Nobody was saying that they would choose armor instead of a firearm. I am pretty sure we were both positing that it was a good precaution against ambush attack, not that it was a substitute for a firearm. Good job at twisting our words out of their intended meaning counselor.

    • Stereotypes might have inception in ignorance, but the persist when too many people live up to them. If you’re offended, it’s only because it hit too close to home.

      IF: Rising to the level of hate doesn’t snag it’s nuts on the hurdle of truth, then the problem is just your sensitivity. If you didn’t need a tampon for your feelings you’d see that I am the one who’s offended, and what I’m really saying:

    • “Jewish people in general have nothing to do with this author in particular”

      you’re high

  13. Figuring that millennials are people born 1980 through 2000, then these are people age 16 through 36 as of 2016. Since the point is that lower crime decreases the incentive for millennials to own self-defense firearms, let’s look at patterns of millennials obtaining their licenses to carry.

    Texas maintains stats on carry license applications by year an applicant age. So I’ve just summed up the percentage of applicants in 2016 who are eligible millenials (18 to 36), and compared that figure to the same age range from 2006 and 1996.

    In 1996, 18-36 year olds comprised 17.8% of Texas concealed handgun license applicants. In 2006, that age group accounted for 19.4% of all applicants. In 2016, however, the 18-36 year old bracket of applicants, the actual millenials, accounted for 25.7% of all applicants.

    This is just one tiny sliver of what a serious analysis of the issue would require, of course. Still, it is interesting that even at first glance, the writer’s point appears to get upended.

    What’s even more interesting, is that in those three snapshot years, the percentage split between 20s and 30s has gone from 40/60 to 50/50. This suggests that not only are millennials taking up arms in greater percentages than their one and two decade ago vounterparts, but that it’s the youngest of the eligible millenials who are doing so the most so.

  14. just let those millennials get old enough to attain assets, children, stuff worth protecting.. then re-run that polling data.

  15. There are problems with using polls to determine anything substantive about guns.
    1. Caller Id: people don’t recognize the number they figure it is spam.
    2. Asking about guns: A stranger calls and asks about my guns; what guns?
    3. People are increasingly less likely to even talk to pollsters.
    4. People lie to pollsters just for the fun of it.

  16. most of which are owned out of a concern for personal safety.

    My reason for owning guns is whatever reason will induce self-righteous a**holes to leave me alone. If no such reason exists, then my reason is “because there are all these self-righteous a**holes who won’t leave me alone.”

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