Firearms sales have been on the up and up since President Obama was elected in 2008, and the federal government’s attempt to pass more national gun-control measures did nothing to quell the firearms industry’s personal economic boom. It isn’t merely gun sales, however, that have lately been experiencing a major surge; the WSJ has the numbers indicating an encouraging trend of more and more Americans taking the responsibility of carrying a concealed weapon upon their person. We’re only halfway through 2013, and it already looks like plenty of states are on track for their biggest permitting years on record:
Since July 1 of last year, Florida has granted more than 173,000 new concealed-carry permits, up 17% from the year before and twice as many as five years ago, for a total of about 1.09 million permits in the state.
Ohio, meanwhile, is on pace to nearly double last year’s total of 65,000 new permits, which would be nearly three times as many as in 2007. And Oklahoma, Tennessee, Wyoming and Nebraska all have nearly matched or surpassed last year’s totals with half of 2013 still to go.
A dozen states surveyed for this article, including Texas, Utah and Wisconsin, issued 537,000 permits last year, an 18% increase compared with a year prior and more than double the number issued in 2007. Early figures for 2013 show many states are on pace for their biggest year ever. …
“I suppose it’s the same reason people are reporting gun sales are up and ammunition sales are up,” said Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine, referring to concern among gun owners about the recent push for gun control. “It’s nothing unique in Ohio.…It seems to be a consistent trend across the board.”
The mass murders in Newton, Connecticut and Aurora, Colorado spurred a gun debate at not only the national but the state level, and much of the media focus was on states that undertook efforts to tighten their gun laws (Connecticut, New York, Maryland, California, and Colorado figuring prominently).
Plenty of states, however, actually went about easing up on gun laws; the WSJ mentions that at least 20 states have loosened laws on concealed-carry, according to the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence. Individual states’ measures have included making permits cheaper and easier to gets, doing away with permits altogether, allowing concealed carry in more places, and/or generally streamlining the process through which their law-abiding residents can exercise their Second-Amendment freedoms and protect themselves and their families, neighbors, and communities.