Tuesday, August 8, 2023

Everytown Research Suggests 'Male Supremacist and Racist' Bias Among Young Gun Enthusiasts

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In contemporary America, many believe that using the term "racist" has become a quick way to discredit someone, often without substantial evidence. Once an individual or group is labeled as such, it can spark a media frenzy, where a significant portion of the coverage might be based on opinions rather than facts. Such an approach can alienate those accused and their supporters, making any form of defense seem like an admission of guilt.

It's not surprising then, that those advocating for stricter gun control measures have noticed the power of this narrative strategy. A recent study, named "U.S. Youth Attitudes on Guns", attempts to link young gun enthusiasts with claims of racism and male supremacy. This research was a collaboration between Everytown for Gun Safety, funded by Michael Bloomberg, the Southern Poverty Law Center, and the Polarization and Extremism Research and Innovation Lab (PERIL).

Originally, PERIL was focused on studying hate and extremist behaviors in Germany. Their mission in the U.S aims to create a prevention strategy against the radicalization of young individuals towards white supremacist extremism. The group's funding sources are diverse, including Everytown for Gun Safety, the SPLC, various anti-gun organizations, the City of Seattle, and even the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

The research comprised three stages:

1. Assessing 68 online pro-gun media outlets and selecting 15 based on their reach and engagement.

2. Conducting a survey involving over 4,000 individuals aged 14-30, though the classification of 19- to 30-year-olds as "youth" wasn't elaborated on.

3. Ongoing interviews and focus groups with the survey participants.

Preliminary findings indicate that a significant number of surveyed youths view gun violence as an issue. Additionally, 42% believed they had easy access to firearms. One startling statistic revealed that 25% had undergone an "active shooter lockdown." One of the more controversial findings suggested a correlation between young people's association with guns and a range of concerning beliefs, from male supremacy to potential PTSD symptoms.

The research cited numerous sources, including notable media outlets like CNN and The New York Times. After the study was completed, the findings were widely publicized, with some outlets suggesting links between youth who identify with gun culture and harmful ideologies.

However, it's essential to approach such findings with caution. The study, to some, seems to carry the signs of a premeditated narrative, especially given its funding sources and the agenda of some involved organizations. It's critical not to hastily label our young people based on potentially biased research. The young generation, in general, is not intrinsically biased or extremist, and it's unjust to paint them with such a broad brush.

In conclusion, while debate and research are essential, it's imperative to ensure that our discussions are rooted in unbiased fact rather than agenda-driven narratives.

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