Everywhere you look in the gun community, there’s plenty of evidence that gun sales are surging. Many shoppers are reporting a complete lack of guns at their local stores. Others report a lack of ammunition. Many of those stores are reporting increased sales as well.
But, anecdotal evidence isn’t hard data.
The NICS background check data, however, isn’t anecdotal data.
The National Shooting Sports Foundation released their data on adjusted gun sales earlier today:
As you can see, we’re looking at more than twice as many guns sold in July 2020 compared to one year earlier. Specifically, we’re seeing a total of 1,848,307 in total sales. That represents an increase of 122.5 percent when compared to the “July 2019 NSSF-adjusted NICS figure of 830,579.”
That’s nothing to sneeze at, to be sure. The question many will ask is just why?
NSSF’s Mark Oliva said, “These are historic figures for firearm sales that have outpaced last year’s figures each month and have set monthly records since March. July’s background checks for the sale of a firearm were more than one million higher than the same period last year. This period of sustained firearm purchases clearly shows that Americans continue to take responsibility for their personal safety, especially during times of uncertainty.”
Olivia chalked that uncertainty up to a combination of factors. “The confluence of COVID-19 restrictions, civil unrest, calls to defund law enforcement and political figures and courts that are unwilling to hold criminals accountable for their actions are undeniable factors causing Americans to assess their own personal safety and choose to exercise their right of personal protection.”
Yet, Olivia didn’t credit just current events for the increase. “Additionally, talk by political figures in a presidential election cycle of instituting strict gun control, banning entire classes of firearms, and severely restricting the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding Americans are being seen,” he added.
He’s not wrong. Things rarely have a simplistic cause. While COVID-19 has been part of the increase, many are losing the fear of the disease. Yet civil unrest, up to and including riots, has played a significant role in making many Americans aware of just how fragile our society can be. Couple that with people wanting to defund the very same police they claim you can call if your life is in danger and you get the kind of situation that sends millions looking for guns.
And it should be noted that all indications are that most of these are new gun owners. These aren’t your long-time gun collector. These aren’t your rednecks with arsenals that rival some third-world nations. These are your ordinary, everyday folks who have just decided that it’s time to be more proactive about defending their families.
These are also people who likely found out that a lot of what’s been pushed by the media and anti-gunners (but I repeat myself) has been a complete line of BS. That should make November look quite interesting, to say the least. Anti-gun lawmakers may want to take a step back and ponder whether they really want to keep going down that particular road.
Especially since there’s no indication that this surge is going to end any time soon.