Support for Gun Control Plummets to Record Lows

In Summary

The percentage of Americans calling for stricter gun laws continues to decrease year by year despite the growing number of mass shootings. 

Despite several nationwide mass shootings and a surge of violent gun crimes, the support for gun control throughout the country has drastically dropped. 

In a poll that says “laws covering the sales of firearms” should be stricter than they currently are, only 52% of Americans agreed, marking the lowest number Gallup has measured on the question since 2014. 

In 2019, 64% of people told Gallup stricter gun laws were needed. The number trickled down to 57% in 2020 and now 52% in 2021. 

The Gun Violence Archive defines a mass shooting as one with four or more people injured or killed. The nonprofit group does not include the shooter. In 2020, there were more than 600 mass shootings compared to 417 in 2019. 

Related: Mass Shootings Increased During COVID-19 Pandemic 

“Americans’ support for stricter gun laws has typically risen in the aftermath of high-profile mass shootings and fallen during periods without such events,” Gallup said in a release. “Changes in the party occupying the White House may also influence preferences for gun laws. Generally, the public favors stricter laws when Republicans are in office and less strict laws when Democrats are.” 

In 2018, the Pew Research Center weighed in on the numbers. 

“This was a year of unparalleled success for the gun-control movement in the United States,” Pew stated. “States across the country, including 14 with Republican governors, enacted 50 new laws restricting access to guns, ranging from banning bump stocks to allowing authorities to temporarily disarm potentially violent people.” 

The three-year anniversary of the Parkland shooting, when Nikolas Cruz entered Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and murdered 17 students and faculty members and injured 17 others, was in February. 

Related: Justice Dept. To Pay Nearly $130 Million to Parkland Shooting Victims 

President Joe Biden called on Congress to enforce stricter gun laws. 

“I am calling on Congress to enact commonsense gun law reforms, including requiring background checks on all gun sales, banning assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, and eliminating immunity for gun manufacturers who knowingly put weapons of war on our streets,” Biden said. “We owe it to all those we’ve lost and to all those left behind to grieve to make a change. The time to act is now.” 

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