Boom, in more ways than one: Firearms sales rocket upward nationwide in response to #DefundthePolice, riots

Boom, in more ways than one: Firearms sales rocket upward nationwide in response to #DefundthePolice, riots

It’s not just Minneapolis. As police retreat across the US, people have decided to exercise their self-defense preparation rights in record numbers. Background checks for firearms sales went up 70% last month year-on-year, the government reported, and gun stores are having difficulty keeping up with demand:

Background checks for gun sales spiked again in June, setting a new record for the highest number of checks in one month as nationwide protests, riots and the coronavirus pandemic continued to increase safety concerns for many.

The National Instant Criminal Background Check System conducted 3.9 million checks in June, an increase of 70 percent over June 2019. Last month’s numbers broke the previous record of 2.7 million checks set in March.

Already this year, the FBI has recorded 19 million background checks in the system, more than were recorded during first 14 years of the system, which has been operating since 1998. Only six months into 2020, the surge in checks is already nearing last year’s record of 28 million background checks.

That’s not a direct measure of gun sales, and in this case it might underestimate the surge. Background checks do not capture the purchases of multiple firearms, for instance, although sometimes the sales do not get completed for other reasons either. This time, it looks as though consumers might be doubling up on average:

Gun stores told Secrets that there is a backlog on weapons, ammunition, and even parts.

The trade group Small Arms Analytics & Forecasting told Secrets that gun sales actually skyrocketed 145%, based on their data. They estimated sales at 2.4 million, though that doesn’t include person-to-person sales which in many states do not require background checks. …

As before, we asked Justin Anderson, the marketing director for Hyatt Guns of Charlotte, North Carolina, one of the biggest sellers in the nation, for what he’s seeing in his store.

He told us this morning: “I’ve been in this business going on 14 years, and I have never seen this much demand. There are shortages of nearly every single defensive firearm currently manufactured. Shotguns, handguns, tactical rifles, and especially ammunition are in short supply everywhere. Our buyer is working seven days a week trying to keep our store stocked. Large shipments are arriving in the morning and are selling out the same day. Our concealed carry classes are filling up so fast that we are adding dates to try to keep up with demand.”

Sales and background checks have been above average all year, and spiked upward in March when the COVID-19 shutdowns began. Background checks then dropped sharply in April but rose again in May, and now hit a new record last month. That does not seem to be related to the pandemic or shutdowns, which had begun to ease, but to riots — and demands to defund and scale down or eliminate policing.

The ramifications will eventually prove out the laws of unintended consequences. That has already started to happen, with the St. Louis incident involving the McCloskeys being one example. If police are not available, then people will take self-defense measures themselves instead, and it’s not going to look pretty. Governments establish professional law-enforcement agencies in order to depersonalize and hopefully de-escalate conflict and to provide consistent and trained responses to crime and threats. Remove that from the equation and that vacuum gets filled with mob rule — and mob rule will generate reactions and resistance, too.

No one will put up with mobocracy for very long, and it looks like Americans are preparing for the day when they have to make that choice. Cities should be looking at this verrry closely when it comes to their policy choices regarding policing.

One thing’s for sure — gun control is a dead issue in 2020. Want to bet that this surge is primarily from urban liberals who have begun to realize the implications of what they have unleashed by cheering on #DefundthePolice?

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