Gun Sales Have Skyrocketed. Who is Buying Them?
Guns have always been a huge part of American culture, but since the Covid Pandemic sales have skyrocketed. The final numbers show that over 21 million background checks were conducted and roughly 23 million gun were purchased in 2020. That's a huge jump over 2019, and the increase broke previous records set in 2016 when buyers feared a Clinton Election. So who is buying all those guns? Let's take a look at the final numbers:
According to one article by CNN, Latinos have started to arm themselves in record numbers. CNN spins the article with a limited sample size to fit their argument and interviews a couple of people who give the following reason: racism.
Due to racist and anti-immigrant comments from neighbors, the interviewees decided that it was time to protect themselves and their families. While we doubt that racist sentiment is the only driving factor in Latino gun purchases, media fear mongering most likely helped drive the panic. Despite the growing pro-gun sentiment, the Latino community voted overwhelmingly Democratic in the 2020 election.
Though we see a pretty diverse group of people at our local range, another minority group helped drive the gun surge of 2020: it seems that African Americans gunned up in record numbers to the tune of a 56% increase over 2019.
New Gun Owners
2020 saw record numbers of people exercise their second amendment rights and the majority of sales were first time gun owners. With literal riots in the streets, people who previously never owned a gun saw the value in being able to protect their families and homes.
As a result of growing fears, 8.4 million gun purchases were by first time gun owners and the buying frenzy left store shelves empty and caused prices to rise, often above suggested retail. Most first time gun owners listed protection as their number one motivator, though in one study 27% of respondents cited the fear of difficulty purchasing a gun in the future.
People in Democratic States
It's pretty much expected that if you live in traditionally red states you own a gun. In left leaning and hard left states, gun ownership is more difficult as many places impose restrictions on gun ownership. That's probably why many people in Democratic states decided to exercise their 2A rights while they still can. According to one site, Illinois far outpaced any other state with 7,455,065 gun sales - 19% of of all gun sales in 2020 despite having only 4% of the nation’s population.
Frontline healthcare workers, who often saw the results of violence and rioting first hand, bought guns in record numbers. Estimates say that between 25-50% of doctors are gun owners and the same study mentioned above said that 67% of new gun purchases went to healthcare workers. That sounds a bit high, but no doubt attitudes have shifted in the industry.
While women have always bought guns they never accounted for as many sales as men. Those numbers are changing as more women are becoming aware of the need to guarantee their own safety rather than rely on a significant other or law enforcement.
One single mom that we know who never owned a gun before bought three in 2020, including one for her daughter. They promptly took a beginners gun class and enough ammo to cover their needs. They are not alone. Numbers show that 40% of gun sales in 2020 were to women.
Now that 2020 has come to a close, it's easy to see that everyone is buying guns. So far in 2021, the gun sales surge has yet to slow and it looks like Americans will continue to buy them as fast as manufacturers can make them. With plenty of reasons to believe that the Biden administration and Democratic lawmakers will do their best to disarm Americans, the time is now to buy while you still can. After all, two is one and one is none.