A new study showed that people who are more involved with religion have a lower chance of owning guns, World Religion News reports.
“in terms of religion, Evangelical Protestants are no more likely to own handguns than Black Protestants, Catholics, Jews, or religious ones, all other things being equal.”
According to the research by Wake Forest University sociologist, David Yamane, the results suggest that religious people may have more faith in institutions and communities, lowering their need to rely on self-defense weapons.
“Involvement in organized religion tends to reduce gun ownership,” said Yamane. “This may be because people with stronger ties to religious groups have higher levels of trust in institutions and in their communities.”
The findings came from General Social Survey data between 2006 and 2014. The results may come as a surprise to Americans who view that religion and gun ownership go hand-in-hand.
“It is true that gun ownership is more common among rural residents and Southerners,” Yamane explained. “But in terms of religion, Evangelical Protestants are no more likely to own handguns than Black Protestants, Catholics, Jews, or religious ones, all other things being equal.”
Yamane studied the relationship between gun ownership and religious affiliation to get a clearer picture of how various aspects of religiosity connect with gun ownership differently. Attendance at religious services and views of the Bible were some of the factors considered in the research.
“My research demonstrates that the connection between gun ownership and religion is different depending on whether you are talking about religious behaving, belonging, or believing,” Yamane added.
The study appears in the Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion.
Wfuedu. (2017). Wfuedu. http://news.wfu.edu/2017/01/13/religious-involvement-lessens-likelihood-of-owning-a-handgun/
Worldreligionnewscom. (2017). World Religion News. http://www.worldreligionnews.com/religion-news/people-involved-religion-less-likely-gun