The Heritage Foundation, which launched a database tracking how often guns are used in self-defense cases, cites the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention which looked at various studies and found "that Americans use their firearms defensively between 500,000 and 3 million times each year."
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, almost every major study on defensive gun use has found that Americans use their firearms defensively between 500,000 and 3 million times each year. There’s good reason to believe that most defensive gun uses are never reported to law enforcement, much less picked up by local or national media outlets.
A 2013 review of the literature by the National Research Council found that “almost all national survey estimates indicate that defensive gun uses by victims are at least as common as offensive uses by criminals, with estimates of annual uses ranging from about 500,000 to more than 3 million.” At the time of the 2013 report, there were nineteen surveys on the frequency of defensive gun uses. All found that defensive gun uses were prevalent. The vast majority of these surveys indicated that there are at least a million annual defensive gun uses. Of these, the most reliable survey found at least 2.1 million defensive uses of guns each year.
In the 2008 case District of Columbia v. Heller, the Supreme Court held that the "Second Amendment protects an individual right to possess a firearm unconnected with service in a militia, and to use that arm for traditionally lawful purposes, such as self-defense within the home."
This database, therefore, is not intended to be comprehensive. Instead, it highlights just a fraction of the incredible number of times Americans relied on the Second Amendment—not the government getting there in time—to protect their inalienable rights. Despite the limitations on data, these confirmed cases of defensive gun use help prove that the “good guy with a gun” is not a myth, but an integral part of American society.
“We know from repeated research that the vast majority of Americans agree that law-abiding people have the right to defend themselves and their families with the firearm of their choosing,” the NRA’s research director wrote in a January 2021 memo to board members. “This is why no matter the policy, our messaging continues to focus on self-defense.”
How is it that so many kids raised on “Harry Potter”, “The Hunger Games”, “Star Wars”, and all the Marvel action movies manage to miss a critical point of the stories? The lesson being: If you want to prevail over evil villains, you must have the proper tools to fight back.
"They say God made man, but Sam Colt made them equal." - Charles Martin