According to the 2006 General Social Survey, which has tracked gun ownership since 1973, 34% of American homes have guns in them. This statistic is sure to surprise many people...It surprised me too. Then again, there's the media that will report such things as a fire breaking out in an apartment with all of two people in it, omitting stories about matters such as the above.
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....
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."...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.
Why? Individualism has been proposed as an answer; whatever it is, "for many Americans, happiness often does indeed involve a warm gun."