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Article
Is there a Relationship between Guns and Freedom? Comparative Results from 59 Nations
Texas Review of Law & Politics (2008)
  • David B Kopel, Independence Institute
  • Carlisle Moody
  • Howard Nemerov
Abstract

There are 59 nations for which data about per capita gun ownership are available. This Article examines the relationship between gun density and several measures of freedom and prosperity: the Freedom House ratings of political rights and civil liberty, the Transparency International Perceived Corruption Index, the World Bank Purchasing Power Parity ratings, and the Heritage Foundation Index of Economic Freedom. Although exceptions can be found, the data show a statistically significant relationship between higher levels of gun ownership and lower corruption, greater economic freedom, and greater prosperity. The cause and effect relationships appear to operate in both directions; that is, a strong culture of responsible gun ownership tends to be both a cause and a consequence of non-corruption, prosperity, and economic freedom.

Keywords
  • firearms ownership,
  • civil liberty,
  • political liberty,
  • corruption index,
  • economic freedom
Disciplines
Publication Date
2008
Citation Information
David B. Kopel, Carlisle Moody & Howard Nemerov. Is there a Relationship between Guns and Freedom? Comparative Results from 59 Nations, 13 Texas Review of Law & Politics 1 (2008). Available at: http://works.bepress.com/david_kopel/6