Following a trend that began in February 2020, the U.S. has been experiencing a gun sales spike. As the country faces a global pandemic, massive unemployment, and now rioting and civil unrest, law-abiding citizens are exercising their 2nd Amendment right to protect themselves with firearms.
A Closer Look at Gun Sales Spike in the U.S.
May is typically a slower month for gun sales, but 1.7 million guns were sold, which marks an 80% increase from May 2019.
Previously, April saw a 71% increase, March a 73% increase, and February a 36% increase.
March 2020 marked the highest gun sales in any single month in the U.S. at 2.5 million.
The FBI processed 3.7 million background checks, which was an increase of 1 million from March 2019.
March 20 broke the record of background check applications at 210,000 in a single day.
Election years have historically influenced gun sales as citizens fear increased gun control measures from a new administration and rush to stock their arsenals. But not everyone buying firearms in 2020 is an avid marksman.
The National Shooting Sports Foundation says that 40% of buyers are first-time gun owners; and of those, 40% are women.
With most Americans facing more economic and social uncertainty than they have experienced in their lifetimes, they are lining up to protect themselves against the unknown.
Many first-time buyers have admitted to not wanting to purchase firearms prior to this year.
Prior to 2020, the previous record for gun sales occurred in January 2013.
Barack Obama was re-elected in November 2012, followed by the Sandy Hook shooting in December of the same year.
The shooting led to a call for increased restrictions, and 2 million firearms were sold in response.
Self-Defense Encouraged by the White House
President Trump has commended the American public for arming themselves and has been vocal in his support of the 2nd Amendment.
As peaceful protests gave way to riots and looting following George Floyd’s Memorial Day death in police custody, the President encouraged business owners to protect their livelihoods by arming themselves and using deadly force if necessary.
With police forces overwhelmed by calls and targeted by rioters, the public has been largely left to fend for themselves.
In March, when several states deemed gun stores “nonessential” and closed them, the White House issued a directive asserting that firearms dealers are in fact essential businesses.
The states quickly reopened the stores.
Armed Citizens Protect Cities
Rioting and looting have taken place in dozens of cities since May 25. This leads to business owners and concerned citizens to take matters into their own hands.
Both made headlines by standing guard over private property while visibly armed in California, Idaho, Minnesota, Ohio, Oklahoma, and Washington State.
California prohibits open carry, but those brandishing weapons in the remaining states are well within their rights.
Multiple videos were captured of would-be looters retreating after being confronted with rifles and shotguns.
Americans Voting with their Wallets
Despite increased gun control legislation being introduced in many jurisdictions, with new restrictions passing each year, Americans are voting with their wallets.
And in 2020, they are overwhelmingly voting in favor of the 2nd Amendment and their right to keep and bear arms.
How do you feel about this gun sales spike in the U.S.? We'd love to hear from you in the comments section!