Late on the gun news bandwagon? Here's a rundown of 2016, which you can probably start calling "the year of the civilian firearm."
It sounds like we're beating a dead horse here, but practically every month sees a new gun sales record being set. This month and this year have been no exception, as more guns have already been sold in America in 2016, with one full month to go before year's end, than in any previous year.
The best method we have of recording gun sales is via the number of background checks that FBI conducts when firearms are sold through federally licensed firearms dealers. This is the National Instant Criminal Background Check System, or NICS, and is performed with every firearm/s sale through an FFL (Federal Firearms License) dealer.
This system does not, however, count private firearms sales or, more importantly, multiple gun sales on a single NICS check. So, bear in mind that these numbers are probably considerably less than actual recorded firearms transactions.
With that in mind, 24,767,514 background checks were performed by the end of November this year. That's 160,000 checks above the yearly record set just last year. Additionally, November set a record of its own with 2,561,281 NICS checks. That's around 320,000 more checks than the previous record, again set last November.
Gun sales records have been set and broken for the last 19 straight months.
The estimates of just how many guns and gun owners there are in the United States is tough to pin down. There is so much misinformation from the anti-gun media and advocacy groups. Estimates vary from around 300,000,000 to over 600,000,000. It is also estimated that 1-in-3 citizens is a firearm owner, and firearm ownership is reportedly on the rise, although anti-freedom/anti-gun groups would suggest otherwise.
Larry Keane, the National Shooting Sports Foundation's senior vice president, said, "Reports of the industry's demise were greatly exaggerated by the liberal anti-gun media."
Many citizen rights advocates credit the consistent rise in gun sales to the anti-gun rhetoric of President Obama and the Democrats, who inevitably use any and every mass shooting as a reason to call for more gun control and try to legislate greater restrictions on guns.
Obama has been called the greatest gun salesman of all time. "Tremendous, literally tremendous," said Bob Irwin, owner of The Gun Store in Las Vegas, after Obama's speech on expanding background checks. "It started with San Bernardino but Obama has just added to it. We can't keep guns in stock. Some of our major wholesalers are basically out of all the stuff that sells."
It appears that Americans are determined to maintain their Second Amendment rights. The more the politicians rail against guns, the more it seems to stiffen the backs of those who cherish that freedom and the basic right to defend oneself, and the more firearms are purchased.
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