Pun intended, folks.
Americans have cut back on buying cars, furniture and clothes in a tough economy, but there's one consumer item that's still enjoying healthy sales: guns. Purchases of firearms and ammunition have risen 8 to 10 percent this year, according to state and federal data.
...Several variables drive sales, but many dealers, buyers and experts attribute the increase in part to concerns about the economy and fears that if Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois wins the presidency, he will join with fellow Democrats in Congress to enact new gun controls. Obama has said that he believes in an individual right to bear arms but that he also supports "common-sense safety measures."
Yah--like protecting my 401(k).
More than three dozen interviews with gun dealers and buyers in Virginia and Maryland and with experts nationwide indicated that the increase in gun sales appears to be driven predominantly by concerns about the presidential election and the economy.
Gun buyers were more likely to say they were responding to the political situation than to the economy, and all but three people said they feared that Obama would restrict gun rights. Two who indicated that they would support Obama anyway said their concerns about the economy and health care outweighed those about gun rights.
Yah, but they bought the guns...
And it's an intermediate-term trend.
The increase is also notable because it follows a heavy year for gun purchases, which industry officials and experts link to the Virginia Tech shootings in April 2007 and a burgeoning housing market crisis. NICS checks show a 20 percent increase in April 2007, compared with the previous year.
This year's jump is a continuation of a trend that began in 2006, about the time the housing bubble popped in parts of the nation, and remained steady last year as the political season began to take shape and the housing crisis grew. It is also a bigger jump than the average annual increases of about 5 percent or less typical since instant background checks began in 1998
That's a good thing. As we say, "An armed society is a polite society." And that bulge in the pocket--nope, it's not an AlGoreAlpha sign.
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The article quotes the owner of my favorite gun store -- Clarks' Brothers of Warrenton, VA. I used to go over there and shoot fairly often (it's free, as long as you buy the ammo from them).
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