The shutdown has awakened many to the validity of the argument preached by gun advocates.
Sometimes it takes a crisis for people to reevaluate long-held views and perspectives. The China Virus pandemic provides just such a scenario for millions of Americans who may not have valued or appreciated (or may have even opposed) our Second Amendment rights. For those sitting at home and wondering when or if they’ll ever get back to their jobs, and fearing widespread societal unrest, many have suddenly realized just how unprotected and vulnerable is their present position.
This realization may explain why firearms dealers have seen skyrocketing sales of late. The National Shooting Sports Foundation reports that, in March, background checks for firearms purchases were up more than 80% from this time last year. Furthermore, dealers have observed that nearly 70% of sales are to first-time gun owners. Is this a surge in favor of the Second Amendment and against gun control?
The Washington Examiner’s Trevor Burrus relays conversations he’s had with friends who had never owned firearms:
Two weeks ago, you wouldn’t have dreamed we’d be in this situation. Where will we be two weeks from now? A month? The essential elements of society are still operating, more or less, but we know very little about how long this will go and how difficult it will be. Unemployment and poverty will skyrocket. If food production and supply get disrupted, things could get bad very quickly.
Gun rights advocates are often ridiculed for having an almost neurotic fear of oppressive government and societal breakdown. They’re mocked for believing guns are a defense against tyranny when they live in a country with the largest and most advanced military the world has ever seen. While that military has a pretty bad track record fighting insurgents carrying small arms, such unrest is unlikely to happen here.
Americans buy and place fire alarms in their houses to protect themselves and their families in case of a fire. For the same reason, many Americans are now joining the ranks of those who own firearms: to protect themselves and their families. Sometimes that can include protection from tyranny. When governors like New Jersey Democrat Phil Murphy are declaring he “wasn’t thinking of the Bill of Rights” while implementing his lockdown protocols, who can blame folks for buying guns?
Nothing like a little pandemic to remind us of what’s really important.