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UT – GUN RIGHTS – Understanding America: Is there a connection between faith and firearms?

Gloria is 40 years old, a mother of five and a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. She is also a gun owner. Gloria was one of the dozens of gun owners interviewed by two University of Kansas researchers, Abbie Vegter and Margaret Kelley, for a groundbreaking new study exploring the religious connection to gun ownership. “When asked about why she owned a gun,” the researchers write in “The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Gun Ownership,” published in the Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, “Gloria expressed a desire ‘to protect innocence.’ She related this back to the idea of the supernatural, sharing ‘I guess it goes back to good and evil. I would hope that I would always choose the good side, and sometimes that means that you’ve got to get rid of the bad guy.’” On the surface, the link between God and guns might seem paradoxical — after all, Christianity, in its essence, promotes peace like all the Abrahamic faiths. Yet, researchers have found connections between faith and firearms. Not only is America the “most devout of all the rich Western democracies,” according to Pew Research Center, but it is also the most armed.  [full article]

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