Last month, firearm-related background checks reached 3.9 million. This is the highest since the tracking system was created more than twenty years ago.
According to Fox News, more than 19 million checks were done in the first half of 2020. This is more than all of the year 2012 and years prior. The report adds that gun sales “usually see an uptick in presidential election years over fears an incoming president could restrict access to firearms.”
For this year, firearm sales increased in March as governments across the country started to issue stay-at-home and lockdown measures.
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Attention towards owning firearms continued following an economic decline and civil unrest after the death of George Floyd.
— Ralph Cindrich (@RalphCindrich) July 2, 2020
“Civil unrest, rioting, looting and calls to defund police are unquestionably motivating factors of why this trend is increasing. Americans are right to be concerned for their personal safety,” said Mark Oliva, director of public affairs for the National Shooting Sports Foundation.
According to the group, 40 percent of people purchasing firearms are first-time buyers.
Live Mint reported that Dave Brown, a Dallas media producer, said he decided to buy a gun at the end of May. He did so after seeing people smash windows at a restaurant near his apartment.
“This is a time where no one knows what’s going to be happening around town the next day, it feels like,” said Brown. “So a lot of people are uncertain, a lot of them are scared.”