America’s Gun Buying Spree

Halleluiah and pass the ammo! My dear friend Pat just sent me a news article that touched my gun toting heart. It seems that 2011 was a good year for the believers of the 2nd Amendment. The report states that the FBI processed more back-ground checks for potential gun applicants than ever before. What great news! More and more Americans are making a choice to legally purchase firearms.  Regardless of the personal motivation for buying a weapon, it is a comfort to see so many of my fellow countrymen doing so.

It’s also a telling sign of the times when so many of us are taking necessary steps to prepare for the uncertainty of the future. Two of the reasons given by the news media to explain the surge in purchases include fear of reduced police forces and threats of new firearms restriction due to political uncertainties. While these may be valid reasons, I think the news media may be leaning to one side with these explanations.

I buy guns because I like them, I like to make ’em go “BOOM,” and I appreciate the value of firearms as a tool of self reliance. When shooting long range rifles I reach a Zen like state and achieve levels of relaxation that no massage will ever give me. I will admit that there are very likely some people that made purchases this year for reasons of fear and concern. Who cares what the motivation was? I would rather a gun be purchased in fear, legally, and stowed away “just in case” than some unfortunate person be victimized because they could not protect themselves. Here are some excerpts from the news article:

  • According to the FBI, over 1.5 million background checks on customers were requested by gun dealers to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System in December. Nearly 500,000 of those were in the six days before Christmas.
  • It was the highest number ever in a single month, surpassing the previous record set in November.
  • On Dec 23 alone there were 102,222 background checks, making it the second busiest single day for buying guns in history.
  • The actual number of guns bought may have been even higher if individual customers took home more than one each.

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