New study shows that more and more rich white teenagers are carrying guns

recent study out of the Lynch School of Education and Human Development at Boston College examines the changing prevalence of adolescent handgun use from 2002-2019. During that period, the researchers found that gun carriage among adolescents ages 12-17 had increased by 41% — with the sharpest rises coming from teens who were rural, and/or white, and/or from families with higher annual incomes.

To be fair, the study does define that income bracket pretty broadly, at anything above $75,000. Handgun carriage among teens from families that make between $20k and $49,999 increased very slightly during the studied period, while teens from families that make under $20K reported a drop in hand carriage rates. Meanwhile, fewer Black teens are carrying guns (from 4% in 2002 to 3.2% in 2019), while handgun carriage among AAPI and Hispanic (the study’s terminology) teens has brief dips but otherwise remained pretty consistent.


Another notable data point: handgun carriage among teenage girls doubled during the studied period — by which I mean, it went from 1.1% to 2.2%. Among teenage boys, the numbers from 5.5% in 2002-2006 to 6.9% by 2019.

Meanwhile, firearm-related deaths have recently replaced automobile injuries as the leading cause of death among American children and adolescents, with a 30% increase just from 2019 to 2020.

Prevalence of Adolescent Handgun Carriage: 2002–2019 [Naoka Carey, JD; Rebekah Levine Coley, PhD / Journal of Pediatrics]

More kids report carrying handguns, with largest rise among white, wealthy, and rural teens, new study finds [Kay Lazar / Boston Globe]


Image: Public Domain via PxHere

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