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I read articles by Dr. Helen occasionally (she is a forensic psychologist who likes to make commentary on social issues in her free time). She read the article, which many of you are aware of, that concluded that gun owners are more happy than non-gun owners. Here is her analysis of what she read:

Are Gun Owners Really Trigger Happy?

An article in the WSJ states that gun owners are happier and less outraged in general than non gunowners (Hat tip: Instapundit):

Who are all these gun owners? Are they the uneducated poor, left behind? It turns out they have the same level of formal education as nongun owners, on average. Furthermore, they earn 32% more per year than nonowners. Americans with guns are neither a small nor downtrodden group.

Nor are they "bitter." In 2006, 36% of gun owners said they were "very happy," while 9% were "not too happy." Meanwhile, only 30% of people without guns were very happy, and 16% were not too happy.

In 1996, gun owners spent about 15% less of their time than nonowners feeling "outraged at something somebody had done." It's easy enough in certain precincts to caricature armed Americans as an angry and miserable fringe group. But it just isn't true. The data say that the people in the approximately 40 million American households with guns are generally happier than those people in households that don't have guns.
I think the point about gun owners being less outraged than non gun owners is an important one. If you listen to many people who are adamant gun control supporters, they often (mistakenly) believe that people simply shoot others because they are impulsive and angry, and a gun is nearby. My guess is that this is projection. This is what they feel they would do because they do not know how to modulate their own anger. They do not trust their own instincts (maybe with good reason!) and project their anger and inability to control themselves onto others. Most legal gun owners seem to have better anger management and control than the rest of the population. In fact, studies with kids who own legal firearms show them to have fewer behavioral problems, not more. The psychology of gun owners vs. non gun owners is important to understand in the ongoing debate about guns.
 

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Interesting article - thanks Dave!

I am trying to convince my wife to get her CCW and carry, I'll have to tell her that it'll maker her more happy. I'll have to phrase it carefully or I will end up as an unhappy gun owner. :shock:
 

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Dave, awesome reference and points! I wish this post had been made a month ago prior to my presentation in Ethics on the RKBA (BTW, I plan on publishing the presentation here this summer once I find some free-time to clean it up).

Anyways, thanks!
 

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I have personally seen this in my own family and that of my In-Laws. Relatives on my side and my Wife's side have commented how much 'happier' we are than our siblings. I think it has something to do with the fact that my Wife and I are more accountable for our actions and take responsibility for our success or failure, safety and security, and raising our own children. We have never ran back to 'Mom' or to the 'Government' because something got hard or didn't go our way. Because of this attitude, we own firearms for protection and for recreation and try to introduce new friends to the joy of shooting whenever we can.
 

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I suppose it might also be a little analogous to the fact that a person with a firearm is often able to de-escalate an angry encounter better than someone that doesn't have a firearm, even without brandishing it. The person with the firearm doesn't have to worry about being prepared for the worst if the other person decides to become violent. They've already prepared for that eventuality, and don't have to react from a position of fear. They have nothing to fear or to prove. The unarmed person, on the other hand, has no such assurance, no added peace of mind. They often have to react from fear, diminishing the range and rationality of their responses.

Similarly, the person that has acquired firearms, trained in their use and learned when to use them has the peace of mind of having prepared for situations that the unarmed aren't ready to handle.
 

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Treesloth: I completely agree with you on the psychology of the armed citizen. I have personally experienced my own reaction even to very mild situations being tempered significantly since I decided to carry. In a presentation I gave last semester in my Personal Ethics class I presented on the RKBA and one of my talking points was the "Social Benefit" that the armed citizen provides. There were 5 of those benefits, one of which was the concept of the "polite society"... the whole idea of the polite society rests on your post, that is, the greater rationality that is developed by an armed citizen.

Another way to look at it is that a "naturally armed" citizen (that is, unarmed) must react to such situations from a more "natural" position... and, as nature shows us, a frequent "natural" response is to stand taller, puff yourself up, look meaner, and bark louder... to intimidate the perceived threat. As you correctly pointed out, an armed citizen who is at least modestly comfortable in their training, has less reason to revert to such "natural" responses b/c they don't feel the automatic fight or flight response as strongly.

Personally, I think this is one of the BEST reasons to carry... but, of course, such argument is probably viewed by the anti-gunners as extremely weak at best; oh well...
 

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:agree: Now I know why I'm so happy and carefree lately :lol3:
 
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