It seems that media reports of the demise of the U.S. firearm industry were, shall we say, premature at best.
Last year and early this year, so-called “mainstream” media were pushing talking points of falling gun sales, reduced consumer interest in firearms and plummeting gun company stocks. Turns out these assertions were simply wishful thinking by those who tend to oppose private gun ownership and call for more stringent restrictions.
In truth, the summer of 2015 might well be remembered as the “Summer of the Gun,” as record gun sales were the trend during the summer months.
According to data gleaned from the FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), firearm acquisitions set a new record during each of the months of June, July and August. Additionally, gun sales are on track to finish the year higher than any year except 2013, when firearm purchases skyrocketed due to President Obama’s major push for more restrictive gun-control laws.
Background check data indicates there were more than 2.6 million firearm acquisition-related checks during June through August 2015—100,000 higher than in the same period during the 2013 surge, and well ahead of any other year since NICS checks began in 1998.
It’s interesting to note that background checks don’t necessarily equate with gun purchases, but they do track very closely. According to NRA-ILA, in addition to checks conducted on customers at gun stores and FFL customers in other venues, other NICS checks are conducted for purposes of obtaining firearm purchase permits or carry permits, the latter of which in some states exempt the holders from redundant NICS checks when acquiring firearms.There’s a reason many gun owners have not-so-jokingly called Obama the “Gun Salesman of the Year” off and on over the past seven years.
So while the FBI data indicates only the number of checks conducted, viewed over time they indicate that gun control supporters are off base in claiming that firearm ownership is on the decline. Just the opposite, the long-term trend in firearm ownership is indisputably on the rise.
Much of the surge in gun sales is likely due to new gun owners, many of whom are women and younger Americans. Gun ownership by both groups is on the rise, as is the financial and political clout these new gun owners wield.
It’s interesting to note, however, that while this latest trend will be bad news to rabid gun-ban advocates, some of the blame rests squarely on their shoulders. At least part of the increase in gun sales over the past few years can be attributed to their harsh cries for extremely restrictive gun laws that would only affect lawful citizens. As A1F Daily readers are well aware, criminals, by definition, don’t follow laws, and gun laws are no different in that respect.
Even President Barack Obama himself, with his continual mention of stricter gun laws, has contributed to the increase. There’s a reason many gun owners have not-so-jokingly called Obama the “Gun Salesman of the Year” off and on over the past seven years. The simple reason is that as Obama has called for more and tighter restrictions that we all know would affect only law-abiding gun owners, these same gun owners wonder what scheme he might push next, prompting another trip to the local gun shop.
Only time will tell if the rising trend in gun sales will continue or level off. But one thing is for certain: President Obama, Hillary Clinton and other anti-gun politicians aren’t going to stop their attacks on law-abiding gun owners anytime soon. They shouldn’t be surprised if gun sales continue to rise in that political climate.