Testing Theories of Gun Policy Preferences among Blacks, Latinos, and Whites in America
Filindra, A and N. Kaplan, “Self-Interest, Values, or Outgroup Attitudes? Testing Theories of Gun Policy Preferences among Blacks, Latinos, and Whites in America,” Social Science Quarterly 98(2): 413-28, 2017
32 Pages Posted: 7 May 2020
Date Written: November 15, 2017
Theory: Research examining the factors shaping gun policy attitudes has focused on the general population or whites. Little is known about how self-interest, political values, or racial prejudice shape the gun policy preferences of minorities.
Objective: We seek to assess the effect of self-interest, political values and racial prejudice on the gun policy attitudes of whites, Latinos and Blacks. We also introduce a measure of prejudice-difference in group violence- which has not been previously used in the literature on gun policy opinion.
Data: We use data from a new survey (2015) and analyze whites, Blacks and Latinos separately.
Findings: We find that many of the drivers of support for gun control found in the general population apply to minorities as well, but the substantive effects vary across groups. Similar to prior general population findings, we find that for all groups concern about crime is associated with more support for gun control, and that gun ownership, being the victim of a crime and conservative political values are associated with less support. In contrast, we find that racial prejudice is negatively correlated with support for gun control among whites and Latinos, while one type of racial prejudice— racial resentment — increases support for gun control among Blacks.
Keywords: gun control, blacks, Latinos, racial attitudes
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