It’s not new that the talk of new gun laws will bring about a boost in sales. We’ve seen that for quite some time. In fact, the case could be made, and some did make it, that President Obama was good for the firearm industry and organizations like the NRA. Sales rose and revenue reached records during his administration as did gun ownership nationally, and especially in Florida, which became the concealed carry permit capital of the country. It’s during the Trump administration that we’ve seen bankruptcies of manufactures and even the elimination of a sub-segment of the industry, bump stocks, along with the NRA now struggling like never before. It’s a bit ironic if you think about it all and embrace political rhetoric over reality.
But now, with Congress back in session and the real prospect of some form of gun control measures advancing, we’re seeing a surge in sales like we used to see during the prior administration during times of tough talk. Sales of firearms grew nearly 16% in August as it proved to be the best month for gun sales since August of 2016, when President Obama and Hillary Clinton were both talking tough. But here’s the wrinkle.
It’s generally assumed that when event driven buying of firearms happens, it’s due to existing owners stocking up. Previously, that’s mostly been true. But that’s not the biggest contributor this time around. Yesterday I had a story demonstrating 48% of Americans having a fear of mass shootings. Within that story I broke out those who’d taken some type of action in response to that fear. The most common response has been to purchase a gun for self-protection. Avoiding crowds was second. First time buyers are to account for a lot of the increase in purchases we’ve seen. It doesn’t fit the PC narrative but it’s true in most mass shootings that – it takes a good person with a gun to stop the bad person with one. Waiting on law enforcement to arrive when bullets are flying doesn’t help those in the path of the shooter at that moment. Not everyone who’s afraid is waiting around to become a victim or running away from everyday life.
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