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Even Bloomberg’s ‘The Trace’ Acknowledges Black Women Are Among New Face of Gun Ownership in America

One of millions of America’s non-traditional gun owners. From The Outpost in Tennessee. Image by John Boch.

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America enjoys a growing diversity in the faces of its gun owners. While some bigots think that only old (fat) white guys and rednecks own guns, they should open their eyes and look around. The fastest growing demographics of gun owners aren’t even white. And black women make up a huge segment of new gun owners in America.

African-Americans are increasingly leaving the gun control plantation. Those who do not only fight stereotypes against legal gun ownership for blacks, but they’re getting their carry licenses and arming themselves to defend against criminal attack as well. Black women, in particular, are getting carry licenses in droves.

That’s bad new for bad guys, and good news for everyone else. After all, a black woman with a gun might be the good “guy” who saves you or one of your loved ones from death or great bodily injury during a criminal attack.

Amazingly, even Michael Bloomberg’s anti-gun propaganda arm “The Trace has acknowledged the rise of black female gun owners in America, clearly dispelling notions that it’s only existing old white guys buying more guns driving the massive growth in firearm sales. Again, from The Trace:

Last August, only a week after Onnie Brown had moved into a rust-colored, ranch-style home in Phoenix, Arizona, a stranger started banging on her door, looking for someone named Ricky. “Ain’t no damn Ricky here,” she retorted to the scraggly white man.

Brown, a petite, 43-year-old single mother with a wide smile, knows how to handle uncertain situations, ones that could veer toward violence. Years ago, she had worked as a nurse in a maximum-security prison, honing a confidence verging on bravado and the ability to read people. “I wasn’t shaking. I wasn’t trembling,” she says.

Resting in her pocket was the .22-caliber pistol she’d grabbed from her desk. This was the first time she had armed herself against potential danger since buying the handgun four years earlier.

But in the middle of this weekday, she didn’t need it. After the stranger realized that neither Brown nor her neighbor — who’d been keeping watch from across the street — were intimidated, he left.

That Brown keeps a weapon at the ready aligns with shifts in why people say they arm themselves. In the ’90s, most gun owners cited hunting and sports shooting as the primary reason. Today, surveys show that two out of three Americans who own guns keep them mainly for self-protection; women especially say it’s the driving consideration. The demographics of who owns guns are also changing. Brown, who is a Black woman, pushes against the embedded stereotype of the American gun owner: white, male, and living in the country.

Brown bought her first gun in 2018, four years after her divorce. Her daughter’s safety weighed on her constantly, and Brown says she “needed to know how to do something more than just scream and scratch” for their protection.

In recent years, story after story has furthered the narrative that Black women are the fastest-growing group of gun owners in the country. While there are some surveys and recent academic research to support this assertion, conclusive evidence remains elusive. Yet the narrative rings true to many Black gun owners, including many of the more than a dozen interviewed for this story. It’s also supported by the gender breakdown of the more than 40,000 members of the National African American Gun Association, a majority of whom are female.

Yes, there is clearly a slant in The Trace’s reporting. Labelling the fact that black females are the fastest-growing demographic of gun buyers as an “assertion” serving as a blatant example. Yet the fact that this trend has become so overwhelming that The Trace feels compelled to report on it should stand as a testament to this massive change in what gun buyers look like.

And the majority of the NAAGA members are female? Whoa! Not only are these ladies buying guns and carrying them for personal defense, but they’re becoming politically active in advocating for their rights as well! Hallelujah!

Welcome aboard, ladies!

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