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Slavery, racism connected to U.S. gun ownership: report

Passersby walk past gun-free zone signages near Times Square in New York, the United States, Sept. 1, 2022. (Photo by Michael Nagle/Xinhua)

Surveys have shown that two-thirds of gun-owning Americans say it's a way to stay safe, while people in other countries are more likely to believe the presence of a gun adds risk and danger to their lives.

NEW YORK, Sept. 13 (Xinhua) -- Two recent studies have found more evidence that for many white Americans who advocate for gun rights, it isn't simply about owning and using a tool, but even more about identity and power, reported The Center for Public Integrity last week.

One of the research papers found that the larger the percentage of enslaved people a U.S. county had in 1860, the higher the rate of gun ownership its residents have today.

The second found that white Americans who express high levels of anti-Black sentiments associate gun rights with white people and gun control with Black people, and they are less likely to support gun rights if they believe Black people are exercising those rights more than they are.

"When white Americans talk about gun rights today, they're often not talking about Black Americans' rights. Some of the moments when politicians enacted stricter gun legislation came right after times when Black Americans exercised their rights to own guns," said the report.

Surveys have shown that two-thirds of gun-owning Americans say it's a way to stay safe, while people in other countries are more likely to believe the presence of a gun adds risk and danger to their lives, according to the report. ■