Sturm Ruger CEO Michael Fifer shared his take on why more people are buying guns today.
“It appears to me, if you look over multiple years, that there’s wider acceptance of guns, wider availability,” said Fifer. “There’s more exciting, new products from all the competitors, not just Ruger. There’s more reasons to have guns now than ever before.”
Fifer’s full response to Bill Ledley on whether Sturm Ruger thought the industry had entered a permanently lower level of demand given the Republican sweep of the White House, the Senate, and the House of Representatives gave additional insight:
“I think we’ve kind of seen the story before where you’ll get a big politically-driven spike: they tend to be fairly short and they’re followed by an offsetting decline in demand for a while, and then everything’s returned to what I would call normal.
You’ve got the same factors driving interest. You’ve got more concealed carry in more states. You’ve got more new shooters coming along. You’ve got – generally, it’s more socially acceptable to admit to your friends that you actually like guns and enjoy having them, and by the way, come look at the newest one I just bought, let me show it to you.
All that stuff drives demand. And in some municipalities, you have the cops backing off. They’re being seen by the media too often as the enemy. And so, they’re backing off, and crime rates in those cities are soaring to the roof. Those people could care less who’s President. They want to defend themselves.
So, all of those drivers come back, so every time you have a really tiny spike or some political reason, it’s usually offset. I think we could be observing that now. And then it returns to normal. And I don’t think any of the other reasons have changed, so I doubt that the new normal will be materially lower than where we were going before.
It appears to me, if you look over multiple years, that there’s wider acceptance of guns, wider availability. There’s more exciting, new products from all the competitors, not just Ruger. There’s more reasons to have guns now than ever before. And so, I’m not going to read too much into the current situation.”
He’s right. The Ferguson Effect can still be felt throughout the country and with a greater acceptance of firearms, the more people will continue to arm themselves for their protection. Hopefully we’ll be able to multiply that by the national gun laws coming down the pike, but it’s just like they say, “an armed society is a polite society”.