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How's That Demographic Thing Working Out for You, LaPierre?

By       Message Martha Rosenberg     Permalink
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At last week's NRA convention, executive vice president and CEO Wayne LaPierre thundered that "eight years of one demographically symbolic president is enough." The Democrats are trying to "reshape America" into an unrecognizable country, he bellowed.

But really it is the NRA not the Democrats that is on the wrong side of US demographics. Half of all millennials now support stricter gun laws and only 18 percent of those 18 to 25 even own a gun! Think about that.

Yes, there are more total guns in the US than there were thirty years ago but they are concentrated in homes that already had them and heeded the "Obama's gonna take your guns" warning. Now the post-Obama and Newtown "confiscation" gun rushes are over and gun makers admit they were a fluke. Last year, Smith & Wesson Holding Corp. and Remington Outdoor Co. reported profits down. Thomas Millner, outdoor retailer Cabela's chief executive admitted the feeder frenzy after Newtown was "a bubble" as sales of firearms and ammunition dropped 50 percent.

While households that already have firearms now have more firearms, only a third of total households now have guns--down from half in 1977. The reason for the steep decline, says UPI, is "aging of the current-gun owning population, a lack of interest in guns by youth, the end of military conscription, the decreasing popularity of hunting; land-use issues that limit hunting and shooting and the increase in single-parent homes headed by women."


Paranoid vigilantes running national gun policy
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Hunting isn't even cool anymore to a growing number of young people. Kids are more involved with "cars, girlfriends or hanging out" and "think it's boring to sit in a tree for hours," said Kevin Kelly, a college student, to the lower Hudson Valley's Journal News a few years ago. It's not popular in middle school either agreed Carmel student Nick Sadowski.

"Only a couple of my friends really hunt," high school student Jonathan Gibbons told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. "The rest have never really found the appeal of sitting out in the cold to shoot an animal." According to the Wildlife Service, the number of young hunters, aged 16 to 24, fell by 300,000 in just ten years.

Nor do young people "get" NRA's "Stand and Fight" message, insensitively rolled out after the Sandy Hook massacre. Who are we fighting?

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Martha Rosenberg is an award-winning investigative public health reporter who covers the food, drug and gun industries. Her first book, Born With A Junk Food Deficiency: How Flaks, Quacks and Hacks Pimp The Public Health, is distributed by Random (more...)
 

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