According to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), interest in guns is surging in states with historically low numbers of gun owners. The FBI reported a sizable increase of processed checks in Rhode Island, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, even Delaware—five states recently identified as having the lowest rates of firearms ownership.
In Delaware, the state with the lowest ownership rate, more than 10,000 background checks were processed in the first two months of 2016 alone. As for New York, more than 34,000 federal background checks were processed in both January and February of this year, which amounts to an increase of 29 and 32 percent respectively. In addition, December of last year saw all five states set a record for checks.
Maryland, a state listed as one of the least dependent on the firearms industry, has also seen significant increases in federal checks for firearm transfers.