Article from For Liberty by Norm Leahy.

The number of first-time gun buyers has surged this year, with nearly five million people purchasing their first firearm.

According to retail sales estimates from the National Sports Shooting Foundation (NSSF) and a survey of firearms dealers, “40 percent of sales” so far this year have been to “purchasers who have never previously owned a firearm.”

The group says that during the first seven months of the year there have been a record 12.1 million background checks on gun sales – a 71 percent rise from the same period in 2019.

Why the steep rise in gun sales – particularly among first-time buyers? The NSSF thinks a combination of the pandemic, protests, and broad concerns over future gun laws are driving sales.

The newcomers don’t fit any particular profile or demographic:

Michael Weeks, the owner of the Georgia Gun Store in Gainesville, says from what he’s seeing, “most of it is new gun owners.” He says he’s not doing much business with people who already own guns. And he says his new customers are people of all different races and income levels.

“We see a wide diversity of people come to the door,” he says. “It’s all over the board.”

Kevin Cummins, who runs Advantage Firearms Education and Training in St. Louis, says he’s seeing all kinds of people showing up to take classes.

And for all of them, the basic rules apply: your gun is not a toy or a fashion statement. Get trained in how to use it safely and responsibly.

Image Credit: By Cory Doctorow (Flickr) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons