U.S. Has World's Highest Gun Ownership Rate

Statistically, America has the largest number of guns per person of any country, according to Max Fisher at the Washington Post.

Posted:
 
handgun121512575hc
Brand X Pictures/Thinkstock

Did you know that the murder rate in the U.S. due to gun violence is the highest in the developed world, barring Mexico, which is currently fielding a drug war? Max Fisher of the Washington Post lists the statistics surrounding gun-owning Americans in comparison to the rest of the world, and his findings might surprise you.

Americans don't just have more guns that anyone else – 270 million privately held firearms. They also have the highest gun ownership per capita rate in the world, with an average of about nine guns for every 10 Americans. The second highest gun ownership rate in the world is Yemen; yes, Americans have nearly twice as many guns per person as do Yemenis, who live in a conflict-torn Arab nation still dealing with poverty, political unrest, a separatist Shia insurgency, an al-Qaeda branch, and the aftereffects of a 1994 civil war.

This next chart just shows the gun ownership per capita rate for the "developed" countries, or the members of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). That basically means the world's rich countries. Some of them, such as Switzerland and Finland, are actually among the highest-ranking countries in the world by gun ownership rates. But the U.S. is still way, way ahead. Keep this chart in mind the next time someone compares U.S. gun ownership to Switzerland or to Israel.

Read Max Fisher's entire piece at the Washington Post.

The Root aims to foster and advance conversations about issues relevant to the black Diaspora by presenting a variety of opinions from all perspectives, whether or not those opinions are shared by our editorial staff. 

Like The Root on Facebook. Follow us on Twitter