Wednesday, May 15, 2019

The Golden Age Of Gun Buying

There is no more stark distinction between the two Americas than what you find on the issue of guns. In leftist dominated states like Washington and New Jersey, the state government is ceaselessly trying to find new ways to restrict firearms ownership. Other states like mine continue to expand opportunities to own guns, carry concealed and other gun-friendly laws (Indiana just expanded the legal protections afforded to someone using a firearm in self-defense).

For example, according to USCCA, my home state of Indiana has one of the highest percentages of concealed carry permits in the U.S. at 13% of the population.

Even that underestimates the percentage. Around 24% of Hoosiers are under 18 so of the 6.7 million Indiana residents, only about 5.1 million are adults and eligible to carry. That works out to 17% of Hoosier adults possessing a concealed carry permit. Utah is even higher at 22.5% of the population licensed to carry concealed. Contrast that with New Jersey....

It is all but impossible to legally carry a concealed weapon in New Jersey without an urgent reason that the government accepts. Even The Peoples' Republic of Massachusetts has over 5% of the population with a carry permit.

Where this is less obvious is in firearms sales. It is a safe estimate that there are at least 400,000,000 firearms privately owned in the U.S., more than one per person. Most of the places I have lived it was safe to assume that the vast majority of my neighbors owned at least one gun, even if just a hunting rifle.

Meanwhile most Democrats running for their party's nomination to oppose Trump are yammering about gun control and are especially excited to use "executive orders" to ban guns. Kamala "Kneepads" Harris said yesterday in New Hampshire that she would "take executive action banning the importation of AR-15-style assault weapons". I guess no one told her that the vast majority of AR platforms are made right here in America. Fellow Democrat Cory Booker, also trailing far behind the two frontrunners in the race, is proposing sweeping laws including requiring an FBI background check before you are issued a license that allows you to buy firearms for five years at a time but also to even possess a firearm:

The core of the New Jersey senator’s proposal is a federal gun-licensing program that would require, among other things, a comprehensive FBI background check and proof of completion of a gun-safety course. After a license is approved, holders “could freely purchase and own firearms” for the five-year duration of their license, “with regular, automatic checks to flag non-compliance with license terms” and the possibility of renewal.

So every five years you would have to submit to a "comprehensive" FBI background check, whatever that means, in order to be permitted to exercise your Constitutionally guaranteed right to bear arms. Given that there are tens of millions, maybe in excess of one hundred million, gun owners in America, how exactly is the FBI going to manage all of these background checks for tens of millions of people every five years? The FBI has 35,000 employees. So if you have 50 million gun owners, even spread out over a rolling five years, that is 10 million background checks per year. That is 285 "comprehensive" background checks per FBI employee. There are 260 weekdays in a normal year, so every single FBI employee would have to complete more than one "comprehensive" background check every single working day. That doesn't leave much time for instigating any actual crimes. Do we want the nation's premier law enforcement agency primarily focused on snooping in the lives of law abiding citizens so those citizens can own a deer rifle they shoot 4-5 times a year rather than working on kidnapping, bank robbery and terrorism? Democrats apparently would say yes.

While Democrats are talking about taking guns away from law abiding citizens, those same citizens have access to purchase guns in a dizzying array for incredible prices. You can buy a Ruger AR-556, their AR-15 platform, for under $500. There are dozens and dozens of great quality, high capacity 9mm handguns available for under $400. A Maverick 12 gauge that hold 7 shells in the magazine plus one in the chamber is just over $200. Bolt action rifles in .308, 30-06 and 6.5 Creedmor, rifles capable of hitting accurately and lethally out several hundred yards, or much more for an experienced shooter, are only $300 and you can add optics for only a little more. Better yet, you can buy online and get the best price and have almost any gun shipped to a local FFL dealer for a minimal charge. You want a semi-automatic version of the M249 SAW machine gun? Yep. How about a .50 Barrett sniper rifle? Yep. Ammunition is a little expensive to ship but if you buy in bulk you can get crazy deals on ammo, especially common rounds like .223 and 9mm. With outfits like Palmetto State Armory selling the components to build your own AR-15 and 3D printing getting better and better, there are an increasing number of untraceable firearms that are not on record with the government.

What I am getting at is that most gun control advocates in government and other public platforms have no clue of the sheer volume of firearms and ammunition flowing into the hands of private citizens every day. Getting quality firearms is easier and less expensive than it has ever been in my lifetime. When the ban on high capacity magazines was temporarily overturned in California (hopefully soon to be permanently overturned by SCOTUS), online retailers sold a huge number of "high capacity" magazines to California residents. Some reports say that more than a million high capacity magazines went into California in just a few days. The online retailers I follow were actively marketing to those buyers and offering special deals. At the same time, in places like New Jersey where high capacity magazines are supposed to be destroyed or turned in, it looks like no one is doing so. The same is true with bump stocks. People simply are refusing to comply. When you try to do the same thing on a nationwide scale, what do you suppose is going to happen? People like me that lost all of our firearms in a tragic boating accident don't need to worry but those who still own guns simply won't comply. Will Democrats turn the entire already overwhelmed law enforcement apparatus of America to the task of kicking down doors of law abiding citizens instead of pursuing actual criminals? If you like the idea of seeing nightly news reports of shoot-outs between cops and gun owners on the news every night, basically Ruby Ridge repeated all across the country every day, then voting for Democrats is the way to go.

With a year and a half until the election, gun sales are pretty brisk. If it looks like that Trump will lose? Watch the floodgates open. Smart people are already planning as if Trump will lose to beat the rush and there is no better time in modern history to do so than the times we are living in right now.

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