Poll shows huge support for new gun control measures

A new poll shows huge public support for a number of key provisions of President Obama’s new proposal on guns and violence post- Sandy Hook.  Gun control polls far better than people realize.


The poll, mostly taken before Obama released his recommendations, found 74 percent of Americans favor a ban on assault weapons, with 26 percent opposed. A ban on high-capacity ammunition clips was backed by 74 percent, and 26 percent were opposed.

The poll also found 86 percent favor expanded background checks of all gun buyers, including sales at gun shows and between private parties, with 14 percent opposed.

The disturbing part of the poll is that people also like the idea of putting armed guards at school. I’m sorry, but that’s insane. If things are so bad that we need to put armed guards at schools, then we need to admit that this is a far more serious problem than we thought it was.  Maybe it’s time we start talking about, and adopting, draconian measures to address both the causes of the violence, which go far beyond mental health, and the weapons of choice, firearms.

swat gun control

Swat via Shutterstock

For example, we have a serious violence problem in our cites, among other places, that a lot of folks, on the right and left, don’t seem entirely able to discuss honestly. And it’s part of the reason people want guns – they don’t feel safe, and they know the bad guys have funs.  And I don’t entirely blame them.

I’ve never felt safe in Washington, DC.  I was violently mugged here a little over ten years ago, and I know the thugs that live near me have guns.  And it makes living here rather unbearable, for me at least.  I can walk the dog back home at midnight and not worry about being attacked.  Here, you wouldn’t catch me dead walking the dog at that hour.  Would I feel safer with a gun – sure.  Would I accidentally kill someone if I had a gun?  Isn’t that the question, and the problem.  More guns don’t seem to be calming things down when far too many people are either prone to violence, or simply nuts.

I’ll never forget the time an 8 year old thug, they mold them early in DC, threateningly flashed a gun at an elderly man sitting outside a coffee shop (Pop Stop, for those of you who were in DC in the 90s).  This was before the age of cell phones.  None of us knew what to do.

But that’s not the only problem.  Far too many of the gun nuts have gun lust. Weapons are like porn to them.  They think a gun has the same meaning as Rosa Parks refusing to move to the back of the bus.  A revolver, a bullet, is almost spiritual for them.  And that’s a f’d up attitude to have about a piece of metal.  They fetishize weapons, and violence, and they help feed our already out of control culture of violence.  And someone needs to finally call them out on it.

But in the end it takes political will. Remember, the public option polled at 70% too – and where did that get us? Members of Congress need to stop being afraid of the NRA, and their gun nut constituents, and start standing up for the rest of us. Start standing up against this country’s culture of violence. Before we pass a tipping point, beyond which we may never recover.

Great video below of a police chief telling Congress to man-up and take on the NRA.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MtBH0RMJ7EE&w=720&h=540]

Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Instagram | Google+ | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the Executive Editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown; and has worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, the United Nations Development Programme, and as a stringer for the Economist. He is a frequent TV pundit, having appeared on the O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline, AM Joy & Reliable Sources, among others. John lives in Washington, DC. .

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33 Responses to “Poll shows huge support for new gun control measures”

  1. Geb2112 says:

    Who wrote this crap, obviously grossly misinformed. If you don’t like guns don’t buy one! But don’t lie if 74% of people supported this the dems wouldn’t be campaigning so much

  2. Not sure where they got the data but Gallup shows a very different picture. In Gallups poll 51% did not favor any further gun regulations as of Feb 10 2013. People are reeducating themselves about why guns are safer to have than to not have one. The violent crime in the united states has been on decline (per capita) since 94 and is at its lowest ever. There are less homicides per capita than in 94 less robberies ect ect ect. There are many factors in this but more guns has not attributed to more crimes. I look at this and see most every mass murderer in the last 10 yrs was on some anit psyc or similar med. If you had 1 or 2 CCL persons at any of those places it likely they would have been able to stop these mad persons. If I remember correctly mass murders is classified as 5 or more. There have been many many crimes stopped by CCL’s where they killed less than 5 they just dont get publicised. Guns in responsible persons hands stop more crime than they commit, now I ask how do we prevent the criminals and mentally insane from getting them while allowing the average law abiding citizen to obtain them. No one has made a decent proposal other than people just need to be responsible with their guns plain and simple.

  3. staunch_hillbilly says:

    Google the Battle of Blair Mountain, dipshit.

  4. AdonisArmor says:

    “Lies. Lies. Disinformation. Lies.”

    Guns are not evil. Gun “control” is evil and costs a lot of people their lives. It’s time we called you on it.

  5. Lucy Duncan says:

    I think people want to bear arms to prevent the Government taking them over. This was in the 1700’s when the Southern States wanted to protect their slaves from being freed by the Union (Government). The guns at that time were pistols, muskets and cannons. The reason I don’t think assault weapons belong on the streets is that when the “Government” comes to take you over with their drones or apache helicopters they won’t do you much good so stop being so silly with the NRA nonsense.

  6. Moderator3 says:

    Read the article more carefully.

  7. Jaele says:

    You’re an absolute liar …. You people just make shit up to achieve your desired goal… Karma will bite you in the ass…

  8. Jaele says:

    The ignorance poster child…. Ugh

  9. Jaele says:

    What polls? There are NO POLLS that reflect what you’re reporting!! The only poll I see from your site is NEWSMAX and their polls are reflecting EXACTLY THE OPPOSITE… Think you’ll ever get your story straight? …

  10. ZephyrLegend says:

    Get a real and legal vote, not just a biased poll (Where was it sampled, in a big city?), and THEN you can tell me how the American people feel.

  11. Naja pallida says:

    I never claimed it made any real sense, I was just explaining that it isn’t merely the particular shape or look of a weapon that is the sole reason why they’re labeled as ‘assault weapons’. As soon as we start having problems locating snipers because of the flash suppression, or we have a rash of bayonetings, I might consider these particular things a problem for private ownership. Of all the issues with ‘assault weapons’, the only one that really concerns me is high capacity magazines. If you need more than 10 shots to address your target, be it self-defense or hunting… you’re doing it wrong, and you probably have no business using a gun.

  12. perljammer says:

    I’m sorry. Here I was thinking that the reason we want gun control legislation was to make the country a safer place, not to make sure features with no “practical purposes” are not made available.

    Perhaps the next round of automotive clean air standards should include a prohibition of wood-grained interior decorations.

  13. Naja pallida says:

    And, as the point was, they also serve no practical purpose for sporting or hunting… unless maybe you’re bayonet charging deer in the forest. Which, I’m sure will be a TLC reality series in the near future.

  14. samizdat says:

    Uuuh, I’m not entirely certain how to take that…but “the Yoda of tin foil hats” is pretty funny. No, really, that is a level of cleverness with words that I will never equal. Plus, now that I think about it, would look great on a t-shirt. And there’s a smiley face. So, I win!

    I don’t think this is so simple that it will truly up-end the criminal justice system–much less the opinions on crime and punishment of your average ‘Merkin–but it is probably the most interesting and insightful treatise on the subject I’ve seen in the last thirty years. Which is either an indication of its importance, or I just plain need to get out more. :)

  15. perljammer says:

    From the Wikipedia article on assault weapons, regarding the expired ban on assault weapons:

    “In addition to the 19 weapons specifically prohibited, the federal
    assault weapons ban also defined as a prohibited assault weapon any semiautomatic rifle with a detachable magazine and at least two of the following five items: a folding or telescopic stock; a pistol grip that protrudes conspicuously beneath the action of the weapon; a bayonet mount; a flash suppressor or threaded barrel (a barrel that can accommodate a flash suppressor); or a grenade launcher.”

    I’ll give you the grenade launcher. I’ll toss in the threaded barrel so we don’t have to discuss the hunting/sporting merits of silencers. Everything else in the “two of the following five” list do nothing to make the weapon more dangerous or lethal.

  16. Anon says:

    John Aravosis and commenters, you would all be well served to read a very well researched Harvard study on guns and violence.


  17. karmanot says:

    There are times samizdat when you are the Yoda of tin foil hats. :)

  18. karmanot says:

    “America is the liberal community has chosen to be soft on the child molesters, the rapist,” You do realize that the vast majority of judges are Republicans? Utterly ridiculous rubbish. Pass ‘Go’ and go to ‘Jail ‘ You could start your crusade by eliminating the ‘plea bargain’ racket. That lies at the heart of your complaint., not the liberal community. Or, you could apply as a prison matron somewhere and do imitations of Llse Koch.

  19. Naja pallida says:

    This is why when they wrote the law in the past, and in current proposals, they made sure to list off the various features that qualify something as an ‘assault weapon’, and were not just going by what it looks like… things like a folding stock, flash suppressor, bayonet lug, combined with a detachable magazine and pistol grip. Things that serve no particular purpose for sporting or hunting.

  20. MyrddinWilt says:

    The NRA was demanding armed whacko vigilante groups of jackbooted gun nuts in the schools, not trained cops.

    That is a big difference. It is the difference between yet more NRA gun-wanking and actual policing.

  21. People had to use guns to secure their rights in 1946, look up the battle of Athens Tennessee to clear this delusion up right quick. We haven’t lost when we must fight for our rights to not be enslaved or dictated to we have actually found the courage to say enough is enough. We wouldn’t be the United States of America had it not been for a few very brave men and women who shed blood and were willing to shed blood to make it that way.

  22. Who did they poll, prison inmates? Estimates are that 70 to 80 million households have at least one gun, that is almost one third of the population of the country. According to the ATF and E, in 1999 there were at least 215 million privately owned guns. The NRA also estimates that at least half of the homes in the US also have at least one gun owner. You can make any poll skew the way your agenda goes and it seems this one took their agenda and sampled a group they knew would coincide with their agenda.

  23. Badgerite says:

    Well, that is exactly it, isn’t it. The Supreme Court, through its Heller Decision, gave these kinds of people the pretext they needed, (and it doesn’t take much with these types), to pretend that their desire to own armor piercing bullets, Kevlar, and the same kind of assault weaponry used on those kids has something to do with civil rights. It hasn’t dawned on them, of course, that the actual Civil Rights Movement of the 60’s and 70’s faced real government oppression, ( states are governments after all) as in trying to prevent people from voting, violence and intimidation while the police looked on and did nothing or joined in. That their peaceful protests, even by children, were met with fire hoses and attack dogs. And that was just what was out there in public to be seen. And that this great movement of that time found that the best way to secure their rights as citizens was through, (wait for it), peaceful, non-violent, protest. And it worked. If anyone has to use guns to ‘secure their rights’, as a people, we have already lost. It is the law that protects us most in our everyday lives. From government abuse ( see jury of your peers) and from bad guys. When a small cadre, because that is what the NRA is, can prevent the government from doing that, then the system is failing and a serious effort has to be made to make it work for the vast majority of Americans again.

  24. It’s easy to get the numbers you want. I notice there’s no information on who did the poll or how. It’s funny that right after Newtown people were split 50/50 but now there is massive support for all these measures. I don’t buy it. I have never voted republican, I can’t think of a single measure of theirs that I support but I am a gun owner and while I support all kinds of restrictions on firearm ownership, when you talk about banning things you lose me. You can’t name a single instance when banning something has worked. Limiting the freedom of law abiding citizens is wrong, whether it’s gay marriage, pot smoking, or gun ownership. Not all gun owners are lunatics, painting an entire group based on a few individuals is wrong, and frankly, I’m disappointed that people that work so hard for gay rights don’t get that.

  25. We already have sheriff’s deputies in schools as “resource officers” and many of the schools are asking for more, which is exactly what the NRA proposed and everyone said they were nuts. I’m no fan of the NRA but I don’t see a problem with having a deputy in a school.

  26. samizdat says:

    Perhaps this link may provide some interesting thoughts to chew on regarding crime in this country. Pretty much turns every known idea regarding criminology, crime and its causes which has emerged over the last forty years on its head. And then stomps all over it. The number one cause of crime in this country? Tetraethyl lead, from the combustion of gasoline in automobiles from the end of WWII, to its banning in the seventies.

    Enjoy (A bit long, but if you haven’t read it, or have any knowledge of this subject, you will be gobsmacked):


  27. perljammer says:

    Actually, banning “assault weapons” (guns that look like military weapons but are not capable of fully automatic or burst fire) is more like banning cars that just look like high performance cars, but really aren’t. You know, like those custom car kits back in the ’70s that made your VW bug look like a Ferrari.

  28. Curly says:

    I’ve never felt safe in Washington, DC. I was violently mugged here a little over ten years ago, and I know the thugs that live near me have guns. And it makes living here rather unbearable, for me at least.

    John Aravosis, Your experence in DC was during a time it was all but for the residents to get a gun legally but that did not stop the thugs from getting them. At the same time there was no extra for using a gun in the commission of a crime than not. In to many cases the criminal was treated more or less with kid gloves. But if an otherwise law abiding citizen was caught with an unregistered there by illgaga gun would have the book thrown at him and would be considered as bad as bad as those who used the gun to commit crimes.

    Yes there is much in Obama’s proposals to support and some to oppose. If a person is safe to have a gun the number of bullets it holds will not matter. The question is to weed out the people who are unstable and preventing them from having a gun.

    Some of the proposals that have been made makes as much sense as banning autos because more people are killed with auto than guns. To narrow the analogy a little more, banning assault as some call the semi automatic riffle that has some military characteristics is like outlawing high performance cars. Banning the high performance cars makes more sense because one done not need all that horsepower to go 70 mph and the high performance car cannot be used for anything other than transportation whereas the so called assault can be used for many thing ei hunting, target shooting, defense. In addition the automobile is not covered by the constitution and the firearms are.

  29. Integrity says:

    If Im not mistaken, IN D.C. it was illegal to own a gun yet D.C. had the highest murder rate in the country. Isn’t about time, than rather have more restrictions on legal laws abiding owners, that the courts actually KEEP criminals behind bars, that ACTUALLY punish people for felony crimes. Whats wrong with America is the liberal community has chosen to be soft on the child molesters, the rapist, & God only knows why put murderers even get early release dates. Lets start with actually disciplining those who commit crimes. As long as the message is- do a crime pay a simple fine, Crime will continue against those who actually sit at the adult table.

  30. lets be real says:

    How can a poll of 559 people represent the views of the United States. Lets poll people going in an out of a Bass Pro Shop and publish that all over the news. Maybe then we can persuade people to think that’s what the American people want.

  31. caphillprof says:

    then you haven’t been listening

  32. DJ_ says:

    Caphillprof that is the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard.

  33. caphillprof says:

    If we put armed guards in the schools, kids will get shot.

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