Civil Unrest Fuels Gun Sales

First it was COVID-19…

Gun sales have been surging this spring, and handguns are atop the list of buyers, many first-timer gun owners.

When it was revealed gun sales in May were up 80% over the same month in 2019 by Small Arms Analytics & Forecasting, the protests-turn-riots in several major cities was cited as the reason, replacing the COVID-19 pandemic panic of prior months.

In the middle of the massive demonstrations, stemming from the death of George Floyd in the custody of four Minneapolis police officers who now face criminal charges, it was revealed several staff members working for former Vice President — and current presidential candidate — Joe Biden had donated money to a group that provides bail support for people arrested for rioting in Minneapolis.

That was all it took for the Second Amendment Foundation (SAF) to note the irony of Biden’s campaign, which has been pushing gun control but seems more interested in getting criminal suspects out of jail than keeping honest citizens safe.

“While Biden opposes guns for honest people, he’s all for turning dangerous rioters loose on personal recognizance, maybe so they can go somewhere else and wreak havoc,” observed SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan Gottlieb.

Writing for the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF), Jim Curcuruto, director of research and market development, said, “retailers reported an increased number of first-time gun buyers, estimating that 40 percent of their sales were to this group.

“This is an increase of 67 percent over the annual average of 24-percent first-time gun buyers that retailers have reported in the past,” Curcuruto wrote. “Semiautomatic handguns were the primary firearm being purchased by first-time buyers, outpacing the second-most purchased firearm, shotguns, by a 2 to 1 margin. Modern sporting rifles, revolvers and traditional rifles rounded out the top five types of firearms purchased by first-time gun buyers.”

NSSF-adjusted National Instant Check System (NICS) data estimated May 2020 background checks relating to firearm sales were up 75.2% over May 2019.

(Source: FBI National Instant Check System)

May Set Record

Last month’s NICS checks set a new record for the month of May, eclipsing the previous record set in May 2019 by nearly 700,000 with 3,091,455 checks initiated. Last year’s May NICS checks hit 2,349,309, which was no small feat and on par with the remainder of 2019’s monthly data.

Since this is an election year, watch for a healthy number of NICS checks from now through October, and if President Donald Trump is defeated in November, gun sales should explode even larger. The perception is Biden, a Democrat, will be bad news for gun owners.

When Biden took a swipe at Trump for suggesting he might deploy military units to stop recent rioting, he suggested the president study the Constitution to find the First Amendment.

The Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms quickly shot back: “If Joe Biden would open the Constitution, he would find the Second Amendment.”


Vice President Joe Biden apparently believes someone with a knife is unarmed. (Source: IPTV, YouTube)

Did Biden Really Say That?

Anyone who has ever taken a defensive firearms course will pick up on Biden’s latest gaffe made during a speech in Philadelphia on June 2nd.

The former vice president was talking about police training when he stated, “Instead of standing there and teaching a cop when there’s an unarmed person comin’ at ’em with a knife or something to shoot ’em in the leg instead of the heart is a very different thing.”

Yeah, he really said that. We listened to the video (linked from Twitter below).

Maybe Biden needs a long chat with retired Salt Lake Police Lt. Dennis Tueller. Yeah, that Dennis Tueller — the fellow whose forward thinking resulted in what is generically called the “21-foot principle” relating to proximity of a suspect armed with a weapon other than a firearm, such as a knife or blunt instrument.

Biden apparently doesn’t think a knife-versus-gun situation can result in the good guy being fatally stabbed.

Back in 2013, Biden infamously stated for home defense against burglars or other criminals, the intended victim only needs a double-barrel shotgun. He claimed to have advised his wife to “walk out on the balcony…and fire two blasts outside the house.”

As US News noted at the time, capping off rounds into the air is illegal, especially in Biden’s home state of Delaware.

New Sierra Reloading Manual

Insider Online is always eager to see new reloading data for our favorite handgun cartridges and Sierra Bullets recently announced release of its 6th Edition Reloading Manual.

This volume spans 1,368 pages in a traditional three-ring binder to allow handloaders the ability to lay the book flat on a loading bench. This correspondent has been known to take out the specific page and tack it up on the wall right in front of the loading press.

According to the Sierra, the new manual contains verified reloading data for more than 200 rifle and handgun cartridges. It also offers information for “shooters and hunters of all levels,” including equipment and tools, the reloading process, firearm maintenance and a FAQ section.

Of the new manual, Sierra Ballistics Coordinator/Ammunition Product Manager Adam Bell had this to say: “Sierra’s V6 loading manual represents a significant step in bringing reloading into the future by completing load testing using Piezoelectric pressure testing equipment to ensure that the loads listed conform to recommended SAAMI and CIP standards.”

You can get your copy for $33.75.

Be Careful What You Promise

When you vow to never return to federal prison, circumstances often gel to make that happen, as is the case of Natosha “Tony” McDade, who will never enjoy that 39th birthday party.

McDade, according to WCTV News in Tallahassee, Fla., had been out of prison only since January after doing 10 years on weapons charges. McDade was indicted by a federal grand jury in 2009 for being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition. Prior to that, McDade had been arrested for armed robbery, battery and forgery.

Moments after what was described as a “deadly stabbing incident” in late May, Tallahassee police spotted McDade, who was apparently holding a gun and “made a move consistent with using the firearm against the officer.” The McDade saga ended suddenly, but not happily.

No Looting Zone

One of this column’s longtime friends runs a gun shop and indoor range in Bellevue, Wash., which is close to Seattle.

This falls under the definition of “self-explanatory.”