In South Carolina, the (fake) gun is apparently one of the most popular emoji

S.C. has the nation's 12th highest gun death rate

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South Carolinians are way more likely to use the gun emoji than residents of other states, according to an analysis released last week by TextNow.

The phone carrier compiled data from its users (alarming, but OK), and came across some interesting findings.

In 2018, 1.3 billion of the graphical emoticons were sent by the 150 million users of the TextNow app and carrier service.



The three most commonly used symbols were the tears of laughter, blowing a kiss, and heart eyes emojis.

The most uniquely popular emoji in South Carolina is the green water gun, which used to be a real gun on Apple devices until a fall 2016 software update. By now, most popular platforms, such as Facebook and the Android operating system, have also changed their gun emoji to a less realistic depiction.

In 2017, the Palmetto State had a firearm death rate of 17.7 per 100,00 people — or the 12th highest in the United States — according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Guns are pretty popular in the state, but a recent Winthrop poll found that 80 percent of the state's residents support tightening gun laws by requiring background checks for purchasers.

Other states with uniquely popular emoji include Alaska (wilted rose emoji), Florida (lock and key emoji), and Wisconsin (race-neutral grandma emoji).

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