The first step in our analysis was to understand the individual characteristics and political alliances and beliefs that are associated with gun ownership. To do this, we examined data from the 2012 American National Election Studies survey. Using a model that controlled for race, age, gender, education, income, partisan identification, geography and ideology, we found that racial resentment is highly correlated with gun ownership.
Racial resentment isn’t exactly racism, but it’s pretty close. The concept of racial resentment measures beliefs about race that aren’t captured by stereotypes (e.g. the belief that black people are unintelligent, lazy, or violent) but that are still related to the permanence of race and structure of oppression, such as the opinion that black people should simply “try harder” to succeed, instead of relying upon “special favors.”