Demario Brantley, a lecturer of sociology at Monroe Community College, says, “What’s happening if we look at the data we can identify a few populations – women, minorities – and then we also see the elderly as well as a part of the concealed carry permit increase. People are starting to warm up to the idea of having a gun.”

The upcoming election is also playing a role in in the climbing numbers, and both sides – including Democrats – are causing those numbers to tick up.

“It is having an opposite impact,” said Brantley. “Democrats generally have the ideology that we need to focus on gun control and having stricter laws, but we are seeing is that the idea of having stricter laws isn’t necessarily resonating with the reality that some residents are having in the community.”

According to Brantley, women now make up 25 percent of new permit holders. Although men are still more likely to have a concealed carry permit.

Brantley believes safety has a lot to do with their choice to own a gun.

“More people are probably identifying for a need for guns and their attitudes towards guns are also changing,” said Brantley.

In the late 1990s, more people said they owned a gun for hunting, now more people say they own a gun for protection.

“We’re seeing a shift in cultural trends,” said Brantley.