Should women be afraid of guns? Are guns dangerous tools that can harm and hurt women? Or are they useful weapons that can actually be crucial in saving women's lives?
In the U.S., firearm ownership remains unpopular with women. While there has been a noted increase in women's gun ownership over the years, still only a small percentage of women own guns in the U.S. The latest Harvard/Northeastern survey found out that while a third of men admitted to being gun owners, in stark contrast, only 12 % of women own guns.
A range of factors affect the low ownership of guns among women. It could be, in part, due to a gun culture that puts emphasis on masculinity. It could also be because of an obvious failure to articulate and push forward the argument that the low rate of gun ownership among women and so-called "common sense" gun control measures are actually hurting them.
Liberals are partly to blame for the state of women and gun ownership because of all the misinformation and misconceptions they are propagating. One of the liberals' favorite flawed argument is that high rates of gun ownership hurt women because the mere presence of guns at home increases the odds that they will become victims of homicide. Gun control advocates even exploited a recent report titled "When Men Murder Women" which discovered that many of the 600 women murdered by gun-wielding men in 2014 involved cases of domestic violence. Melissa Jeltsen from the Huffington Post pointed out that during the same period, only 15 instances of women using guns to kill men in self-defense were recorded. It is the narrative of women using guns for non-fatal defensive means or for deterrence effects that is sorely lacking in this whole discussion on women and gun ownership.
The anti-gun narrative when linked with domestic violence downplays the necessary defensive uses of guns for women and ignores the evidence that women can use guns to actually deter crime. Having guns at home may not necessarily translate to increasing women's vulnerability or susceptibility to homicide. Truth is, the only thing that can be concluded outright from such is simply that men are more likely to buy guns. That is the great detail being missed out by gun control advocates, perhaps deliberately.
Gender disparity when it comes to defensive gun uses is actually a good argument for encouraging more women to buy, own and carry guns. Gun ownership for women can reduce potential violence against them. A research conducted by John Lott, a law professor at the University of Chicago supports this with the findings that "murder rates decline when either sex carries more guns, but the effect is especially more pronounced when women are considered separately.
Who should be afraid of guns? Not women! Because when used right and under emergency situations, guns can really be the great equalizer in defending and saving lives. Gun control then could only hurt women more.