14 March 2009

Firearm, Ammunition Sales The One Bright Spot In A Dismal Economy

Tulsa World newspaper reports that sales of guns and ammunition remain high, helping stimulate the economy (okay that last part is mine).

"Most we're selling now we got back in September, but we bought pallets then where normally we wouldn't have ordered that much." The surprise sales come
with .380 caliber semi- automatic pistols. A relatively small self-protection weapon, it's not one that people typically fire in great quantity at the firing range, Prall said. Yet, the ammunition is now hard to find. "Nobody would have predicted that," he said.

"What's happened is everybody is afraid because the Democrats are anti-gun," said David Stone, president of Dong's Guns and Ammo on East Admiral Place. Internet chatter about bills in Congress that would create additional taxes on firearms and ammunition components, require strict licensing and ban more types of so-called "assault weapons" add to the concern, Stone said. "That's just driving everyone into panic mode," he said. "We're selling 10 times the ammo we used to." Similar bills have come up in Congress before, but few have advanced.

"We ran completely out here of 9 mm and .380," said Johny Mathews, product and service manager at the U.S. Shooting Sports Academy on East 66th Street North. "We were begging, borrowing and stealing from wherever." Concealed-carry classes at the academy are booked through April. "We used to do 15-person classes, and now we do 24 because of the demand," he said. Mathews believes that politics are partly to blame, but the economy also has people worried.

"It's 50/50, I think" he said. "When people lose jobs and get desperate, good people can sometimes do bad things. People hear more about home invasions, robberies, and they think it will only get worse. Then they're afraid they might lose their guns or ammo, so they stock up."

To read the story in its entirety, click here.

I do have a bone to pick with the gentleman who refers to the actions people are taking in purchasing ammunition as "hoarding." Hoarding refers to obtaining something and keeping others from getting it. "Stockpiling" is the better and more intellectually honest word, just as the American Red Cross (to this day) continues to urge Americans through radio, television and full page newspaper advertisements to stockpile food, water, prescription drugs and medical supplies in case of a natural or man-made disaster.

Simply put, everybody has had an equal chance to go purchase firearms and ammunition. Because some people don't, to refer to those who do as "hoarders" is an exercise in laziness. Its also dishonest.

In the end, there are many logical and rational reasons to be concerned both with the economy, the runaway spending on social programs being poorly disguised as "stimulus packages," and crime. Thinking people are responding by purchasing items for their personal protection. The same way and reason people buy insurance. Hope for the best, but prepare for the worst.

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