A new study was released on PLoS One that links those of us who support gun rights to racism.
After accounting for numerous other factors such as income, education and political ideology, the researchers found that for each one point increase (on a scale from one to five) in symbolic racism there was a 50 percent increase in the odds of having a gun in the home and a 28 percent increase in support for policies allowing people to carry concealed guns.
Each one point increase in symbolic racism (a modern measure of anti-black racism) was also associated with a 27 percent increase in the odds of opposing bans on hand guns in the home. After accounting for those who already had a gun in the home, the odds were reduced to a non-significant 17 percent increase. However, the authors note that this reduction is unsurprising as opposition to bans on guns equates to self interest on behalf of those who already own a gun and do not wish to give it up. And racism was already strongly associated with having a gun in the home.
Oookay…. So what exactly is this “symbolic racism” that I am being accused of harboring?
Symbolic racism supplanted old-fashioned or overt/blatant racism which was associated with open support for race inequality and segregation under ‘Jim Crow Laws’, but it still captures the anti-black sentiment and traditional values that underpinned blatant racism. Symbolic racism has also been found to be related to stronger opposition to policies that may benefit blacks (e.g. welfare), and greater support for policies that seem to disadvantage blacks (e.g. longer prison sentences).
So, let me get this straight. If I don’t support policies that the authors of this study (and their ilk) deem as pro-black, then I’m somehow transmogrified into a “symbolic racist.” And gee, it’s amazing how many of those policies are held by fiscal and social conservatives, who coincidentally, tend to own guns at a higher rate. I wonder if the authors of this study considered opposition to gun control as part of their “symbolic racism.”