While others are out battling over cheap televisions, you, the American shooter, are out buying firearms in what the FBI expects to be the single greatest day of NICS background checks in American history.
As measured by the number of background checks processed by the FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), this year’s string of high-profile shootings had already encouraged record-breaking sales figures even before anecdotal reports emerged about a new binge set off by the Paris attacks. In June, July, September, and again in October, the division recorded new monthly records for the number of background checks it performed.
Meanwhile, since the system was established in 1998, Black Friday has consistently ranked near the top of the list for the most background checks performed in a single day, claiming three of the top 10 highest volumes for a 24-hour period.
The confluence of those two trend lines has the FBI predicting a huge total for November 27, spokesman Stephen Fischer tells The Trace. Bureau forecasts show this Black Friday shattering the single-day record with an estimated 190,000 background checks run in a 24-hour period — or slightly more than two background checks every second.
If that happens, it will reshuffle a ranking heavy on new entries: the second busiest day for background checks ever was recorded just a year ago, on Black Friday 2014.
This data comes to us from a whining and resigned The Trace, Michael Bloomberg’s anti-gun propaganda outlet. Keep in mind that the 190,000 figure only accounts for NICS background checks, not total gun sales. Many people will be buying more than one firearm per background check if they are getting a good deal, and many purchasers have concealed carry permits, which means they don’t have a NICS check run when they buy guns (as the concealed carry background check is much more through and involved, a NICS check is redundant). While there is no single mechanism to track the exact number of firearms sold today, I’d suggest that we’re probably going to see a total of roughly 225,000 guns purchased today.
We view this news with happiness, as many of these firearms and perhaps hundreds of thousands more purchased during the holiday season are going to be “first-time” firearms for many Americans.
When I was behind the gun counter (now quite a few years ago) it was always a joy helping a father or grandfather pick out a new shotgun or rifle for “under the tree.” You could see the palpable joy in their eyes as they thought about the time they’d spend with with son or grandson ornephew at the range and in the woods.
Times have changed, and quickly. We’re now likely to see grandmothers and mothers in the mix as well at the sporting goods counter or in the gun store, buying guns for daughters and granddaughters and nieces as “Gun Culture 2.0” continues to draw in an ever more diverse and growing crowd.