According to the National Shooting Sports Foundation, an analysis of the FBI’s Instant Background Check System indicates that gun sales in 2020 have been so strong that they must almost certainly include a huge swath of first-time gun owners.
From National Review:
Using the FBI’s National Instant Background Check System, National Shooting Sports Foundation, a firearm trade association, estimates that there were over 12 million guns bought in the first seven months of 2020 — up more than 70 percent over the same time span in 2019. This number is likely to include nearly 5 million first-time gun owners so far this year. That is probably the biggest surge in gun ownership in American history. It’s worth noting, too, that the number would likely be higher if gun shops hadn’t been trying to keep up with demand for months.
Some understandably believe that this surge in new-gun ownership could play a significant, if understated, role in the upcoming election. While it’s true that not every gun owner is a Republican and that there are gun owners who believe in strict gun control laws, there’s no doubt that the Democrats are always trying to push new and inventive restrictions on the Second Amendment. Once more people own guns, learn about them, and get comfortable with them, will groups like Everytown and Moms Demand Action lose their influence with the party?
And what about Kamala Harris, who has said outright that she wants to go confiscate AR-15s and similar firearms? How does her presence on the ticket sit with wary gun owners, many of whom undoubtedly bought just such a rifle for home protection? Are they going to willingly cast a vote for a vice president with these kinds of radical ideas? Is it so easy to vote away your own rights?
We’re just not sure the Democratic Party’s philosophy on gun control is tenable at a time like this. You can’t argue for defunding the police on the one hand and disarming citizens on the other. You can’t express support (or at least withhold condemnation) for groups like Antifa and insist that homeowners give up their protection. You can’t turn a blind eye to nightly riots in Portland, Seattle, and other cities and ask the law-abiding public to leave themselves open for invasion and attack. Even for Democrats, this is hypocrisy too sour to swallow.
Gun control hasn’t been at the forefront of the national conversation for a while, but it might be a wise thing for Trump to start bringing up. New gun owners ought to know what Biden and his radical running mate have in mind.