2020 Gun Sales Surge Making America’s Already Diverse Gun Owner Population Even More So

Black Women Guns

Marchelle Tigner, a firearms instructor, teaches a group of women how to identify which eye is their dominant eye during a class in Lawrenceville, Ga. Tigner’s goal is to train 1 million women how to shoot a gun in her lifetime. She is among the nation’s black women gun owners who say they are picking up firearms for self-protection. (AP Photo/Lisa Marie Pane)

By Larry Keane

Throw out the stereotypes on American gun ownership. They’re just wrong.

Against the backdrop of historically high firearm sales, one major theme is shattering misconceptions that America’s gun owners are “old white men.” A surge in gun buyers across the country in 2020, more than 2.5 million since March alone, has boosted the diversity of the firearm-owning population.

While surprising to some, it’s not to those in the firearm industry. Today’s gun buyer looks more like the rest of America. They represent all walks of life and those buying firearms today increasingly are women, minorities and more urban than in previous generations.

Taking Responsibility

The coronavirus pandemic and uncertainty surrounding business shutdowns and stay-at-home orders initially led to more Americans jumping off the sidelines to buy firearms. Certainly, riots and looting spurred on the trend, as did moves by politicians to bend to mob chants to defund the police.

Gun retailers said as much as 40 percent of purchases have been to first-time buyers. It makes sense. Local law enforcement is stretched thin and police resources were limited. Criminals were allowed out of jail, many quickly committing crimes again. And prosecutors promised not prosecute criminals the police did arrest.

Law-abiding Americans of all walks of life watched these disturbing circumstances develop and took their safety into their own hands. Numerous examples abound of lawful gun owners standing guard in front of their homes, their businesses and their neighbor’s businesses, often deterring additional violence and crime. For any number of good reasons, women and minority firearm ownership are on the rise and growing quickly.

Maj Toure, founder of Black Guns Matter, promotes African American gun ownership and spends his time advocating firearm ownership and teaching gun safety in urban and minority communities. He spoke to Business Insider about the growth and success of his efforts. “People somehow forget that we have the right to defend our lives with firearms,” Toure said.

The National African American Gun Association boasts membership growth of 15,000 new members in 2020 so far. “A lot of times in our community, we hear a lot of our politicians, unfortunately say, don’t have a gun. You don’t need a gun,” explained NAAGA founder Philip Smith. “Well, I pushed back on that and say, that’s the very thing that we do need.”

It’s a Woman’s World

Women aren’t just standing by either. In 2003, only 13 percent of women identified as gun owners. Fast forward to 2020 and that number totals nearly 25 percent. According to a recent Pew Research Center survey, 25 percent of those female gun owners say self-protection is their main reason for owning a gun, and 70 percent say owning a gun is essential for their personal freedom.

After seeing a man outside her window while alone one night, 59-year old Terry Marsh said she would not be in that position again unarmed.

woman gun range train shoot

Bigstock

“It’s a very helpless feeling knowing you can’t protect yourself or your family,” Marsh said. “If I had a gun or a way to protect myself it would have given me a little bit of power and I’d have felt secure.”

Women are taking those priorities into their own hands, with home and family safety at the top of Americans’ minds during the current unsettling times. That makes sense and is a welcomed development. 

Political Tides Turning

As the numbers of gun owners in America continue to swell, political issues around gun ownership and gun control will manifest these trends. First-time gun buyers have seen firsthand what roadblocks there are to their firearm purchase and are often surprised. Scott Kane, a first-time buyer from California, recently told the Washington Free Beacon about his buying troubles.

“This has taken me, a law-abiding citizen with nary an unpaid parking ticket to my name, over a month,” Kane said. “Meanwhile Joe Bad Guy has probably purchased several fully automatic AK-47s out of the back of an El Camino in a shady part of town with zero background checks. I’m seriously thinking of running for office or something. This state’s gun laws are insane.”

Candidates for political office are beginning to look more and more like the gun-owning population as well. The Wall Street Journal highlighted a record number of pro-Second Amendment women candidates embracing gun ownership and stepping forward to run for office. More than 220 women have filed to run for Congress and 50 of those have already secured their name on the November ballot.

One candidate, Genevieve Collins running in Texas, explained it bluntly. “Being a Texas woman means you know how to shoot, clean, and eat your kill in one day, then throw on your dress and work a boardroom the next.”

Genevieve Collins – Second Amendment

Floyd McLendon’s desperate and shameful attacks are continuing. The fact is, I will always stand up to the socialist Democrats and fight for our Second Amendment rights.

I’m proud to be the only major candidate in this race to receive the NRA’s highest rating, the AQ Rating. McLendon refused to even fill out the NRA questionaire.

Posted by Genevieve Collins for Congress on Friday, February 28, 2020

 

As gun control groups like billionaire Michael Bloomberg-funded Everytown for Gun Safety and Moms Demand Action clamor for more gun control, increasingly more voices of a diverse American gun owner are responding. The impacts will be significant on the future of Second Amendment rights in America.

NSSF launched the #GUNVOTE online resource to help gunowners to register to vote and provide voters election updates and candidate information in order to be more educated about the Second Amendment positions of political candidates. As these positive trends continue, voters need to be informed in the ballot box so they don’t risk their rights.

 

Larry Keane is SVP for Government and Public Affairs, Assistant Secretary and General Counsel of the National Shooting Sports Foundation.

comments

  1. avatar Leigh says:

    The more the merrier…as long as they get some training…even on-line…learn the basics…store their guns properly when not in use…know state and local laws …etc etc etc
    Just try and be responsible gun owners…like the other 99.99%
    Welcome to the club. Try and get friends and family involved, too.

  2. avatar 2aguy says:

    But it won’t help. The people who are buying guns, if they are democrats, are still going to vote for democrats. They are not informed enough to know that any vote for a democrat is a vote to have their gun taken away. If biden wins he will replace ginsburg, breyer and maybe even Thomas with left wing, anti-gun extremists who will over turn Heller, Macdonald, Caetano, mIller and the other 2nd Amendment rulings. The lower court judges he appoints will be the tip of that spear, making the local and state anti-gun laws constitutional…..then, he will use the Dept. of Justice to go after gun makers and gun stores, and if he gets congress, they will repeal the Lawful commerce in arms act…..which will allow left wing, democrat, anti-gun lawyers to sue gun makers and gun stores into shutting down with bogus law suits. So……these new gun owners are not going to help if they vote for any democrats at any level of government.

    1. avatar Cooter E Lee says:

      I’m sure many are democrats, but many more are apolitical or right tending. I myself was a non voter uninterested in politics and a bit of a “guns are for hunting.” Fudd until Obama opened his stupid mouth about Taking them away 7 years ago.

      I’m now a PROUD super owner with my silver star of buying achievement gunning for that gold. I Now (reluctantly) vote and I use the second amendment as a litmus test in politics. If you swear to uphold the constitution and you don’t understand the first two amendments then I’m not voting for you. I’ll vote for a RINO before I support an anti 2a, so that makes me a de facto republican though I am still registered as independent.

      So basically, don’t lose hope. It just takes time or a life changing event to wake people up. (like 0 police protection from rioters.)

    2. avatar John A. Smith says:

      “They are not informed enough to know that any vote for a democrat is a vote to have their gun taken away.”

      Most people are not one issue voters. Most folks who love guns but who vote Democrat know full well the consequences, but in their opinion, those consequences aren’t as bad as voting Republican.

      1. avatar RayS says:

        Yea, dont get your hopes up. Many of these new buyers think they are different – not like the gun nuts. I’ve talked to a couple – they “just” want something in case. Would probably sell it when things settle down.

        1. avatar Ing says:

          I used to think I wasn’t like those gun nuts, too. I thought the NRA was like PETA with guns; full-on nutbars.

          One difference may be that I bought my first gun (in 2010) because I already thought guns were pretty awesome. Spending time at the gun range at Boy Scout camp back in 1984 was the funnest thing ever, and I wanted to recapture a bit of that for myself — and introduce my son to the same kind of fun and learning I had as a kid.

          It took me a while to come around on politics. I voted for Obama. Twice. (Yeah, I know…) I used to consider myself a full-on liberal.

          Four years later, I joined the NRA. Four years after that, I let my NRA membership lapse because it seems to me they’re wasting members’ money and negotiating rights away; and at the same time, I donated to their training programs because they’re still doing God’s work that way. Next donation I make will probably be to the SAF.

          Politically, anybody who has read my comments here probably knows that I fall into the libertarian constitutionalist zone (or maybe conservatarian, if you prefer). I’m one of those single-issue voters I once derided, because I’ve come to realize that the Second Amendment is a keystone issue; a politician who doesn’t respect the Second Amendment doesn’t actually respect the Constitution at all.

          Anyway, the point is, some people will make that journey. I know I’m not the only one who has walked that road. A lot of the new gun owners — possibly most of them — won’t, but some will. And every single one who does is a strong addition to our side. It would behoove us to help as many of them as possible to make that journey.

      2. avatar PMinFl says:

        There are many politicians who have become “woke” (if that’s the term) to the fact that if they spout pro 2nd amendment rhetoric it will garner them some new votes. It’s after the ceremonies that we will know the truth when the anti-gun legislation comes around. Let’s hope that these pols remain true to their new found view.

  3. avatar edward kenway says:

    Once again diversity in gun sales for self-protection is advertised while the universal rule of self defense, regardless of sex, race, or religion is given a back seat in the media. The ironic part is how a bunch of intelligent, but less than perfect white guys came up with that self-evident concept over 200-some years ago and people think the pubic reaction is novel or exceptional in some way.

  4. avatar Sam I Am says:

    “…increasingly more voices of a diverse American gun owner are responding. The impacts will be significant on the future of Second Amendment rights in America.”

    New gun owner ≠ POTG (or active 2A defender).

    Don’t hold your breath.

    1. avatar UpInArms says:

      ” New gun owner ≠ POTG (or active 2A defender) ”

      It’s all a matter of probabilities.

      Never a gun owner = Never a 2A defender.

      New gun owner = Higher probability of becoming a 2A defender.

      It’s a world of scarcity. Take whatever we can get.

      1. avatar Sam I Am says:

        “Never a gun owner = Never a 2A defender.”

        Well….

        I am the exception that disproves the rule (ain’t I special?). As a youngster, my family had no guns in the house, yet we were never opposed to someone else having firearms. It wasn’t until a decade after retiring from the military that I became interested in firearms as intriguing machines. And another decade passed before buying my .22 plinker.

        In all those years of non-ownership, if asked, I would have supported application of the Second Amendment as written (except, at the time, for former felons). There was only one exception regarding a non-felon, and that was because he believed not wearing seat belts was a safety measure because a body bouncing around in a car would not absorb all the energy of a collision at once, thereby improving the chance of zero, or no, injuries.

        It seems quite possible that many non-gun owners would not object to others owning firearms, and support RTKBA.

  5. avatar Jimmy Beam says:

    Still no evidence that many of the “new gun owners” will not vote for Democrats.

    1. avatar My2cents says:

      You know not so long ago there used to be pro-gun democrats and even conservative democrats. Maybe they will make a come back. At least I hope so.

      1. avatar Someone says:

        Don’t hold your breath. Modern Democrats love themselves diversity. Except for diversity of opinion. Step one inch aside from the official path and get cancelled.

  6. avatar Connor M. says:

    divesity is fine as long as they vote the right way. the problem is if people who get into gun ownership and still vote democrat, we are basically arming our enemy. whether or not the spike in gun ownership is a good thing depends on how these new gun owners are voting.

    1. avatar Debbie W. says:

      At least new gun owners have an excuse. On the other hand there are worthless self serving gun talkers on this forum that are Never Trumpers. Their vote or no vote goes to the democRat Party. The bigger problem is the slanderous, libelous Trump hating gun talking lowlifes like “enuf” who enjoy all the benefits from those who pulled the wagon to get DJT elected and now are pulling the wagon to get POTUS DJT reelected.
      These ratbassturds like enuf who sat on their butts and lint licked hilliary rotten clintoon boast about buying hundreds of rounds of ammo while ignoring the fact that if hilliary rotten clintoon was POTUS they would not be buying squat.
      Such gun talkers talk the talk to get gullible gun owners to fall into their POTUS hate trap. So never mind what new gun owners are doing. It’s the back stabbing filth who slander and libel the POTUS that do nothing but put a sht grin on a democRat’s face.

      1. avatar Got Damn says:

        Pity the poor geezer who lays down next to this miserable, foul mouthed harpy.

        1. avatar Debbie W. says:

          My Butthurt Matters!

        2. avatar Void says:

          Personal attack that does nothing to refute her point hmmmm I sense basement dwelling butthurt.

        3. avatar tsbhoa.p.jr says:

          she’s super hot and talks dirty.

      2. avatar PMinFl says:

        Debbie, I’m almost a never Trumper, but completely a Never Hillary or NO Joe. While not a lover of Trump (like you) I will also vote for him (like you) to prevent a takeover of the executive branch. Instead of marching for DJT you might exert as much effort to insure a favorable congress for that’s where the legislation comes from. Being a worshipper of an idol (idle idol) will only lead to dissappointment. Republican and Democrat parties are just opposite sides of the same coin (heads we win, tails we loose). Politicians are mostly in it for power and prestiege, however a few do a real good job for their constituents. Find those who fill this description and promote the hell out of them or at least vote your conscience.

  7. avatar Debbie W. says:

    The Jim Crow Gun Control democRat Party has sold so many guns manufacturers cannot keep up. Every time a democRat twitches their tail another law abiding American buys a 🔫.

    1. avatar MikeJH121 says:

      Not only…but the 1968 Gun Control Act is a cut and paste of the Nazi gun controls. Deleting the words like Jew and Gypsy etc….. The party of the KKK Margret (The blacks are like weeds and need to be eliminated) Sanger, more dead because of abortions than all wars to date. We can’t count Commies killing their own people in the War statistic numbers. They have racked up at least 120 million in the past, and the new numbers depends on how many China has rid themselves of so far. What is the old saying. “Ain’t seen Democrats this mad since we freed their slaves”

  8. avatar Ralph says:

    Contrary to published reports, diversity does not make everything better. Sometimes, it just means that the rats are in the larder.

    We will see what these new gun owners do. I’m not expecting them to be helpful. If they were smart, most of them wouldn’t be new owners. They would be adding to their stock not just starting out.

    1. avatar Someone says:

      Exactly. The “Diversity is a strength!” is a leftist mantra about as truthful as “freedom is slavery”. It may very well mean that the opposition is getting armed to violently push their socialist ideology and that many of these new gun owners will support Antifa. Only time will tell.

      There is nothing wrong with being white, male, old or any combination thereof either, no matter what leftists say. Let’s not fall for their rhetoric.

      1. avatar Tired of the bs says:

        At least it’s nice to know your enemy just got their gat last week.

  9. avatar Steve Eisenberg says:

    Gun Control is a disarmament scheme having nothing to do with reducing crime or self-defense.

  10. avatar Green Mtn. Boy says:

    After Buying Your 1st Gun – The Most Important Thing You Should STOP Doing.

    1. avatar Kenneth Phillips says:

      What makes a criminal is the fact that they don’t obey the law. What makes you think that if he won’t obey a law against robing or rapeing someone, he will obey the law against having a gun? STUPID!
      If you ever run for office, I will vote for you.

  11. avatar enuf says:

    “…. America’s Already Diverse Gun Owner Population ….”

    There’s the point. Ownership of firearms has always been diverse. Different needs, different interests, different politics. The current surge in buying has added less than 1% to the total guns owned by citizens, no way that is sufficient to claim much of a broadening of Second Amendment support.

  12. avatar cgray says:

    Let’s just spend the next 108 days pretending that Trump isn’t at 40%, MMMMMKKKKKAAAAAAAAYYYYYY!!!!!

    1. avatar Debbie W. says:

      cgray…There is no pretending. You and the democRat Party Jim Crow Gun Control Joe Biden lintlicker enuf were clearly made for each other.

      TRUMP/PENCE 2020.

      1. avatar Debbie W. says:

        “The butthurt is strong in this one”

    2. avatar jwm says:

      hillary had a lock on 16, according to those same polls.

      1. avatar enuf says:

        I’m not predicting anything, but also no longer certain that Trump will win again. The thing is, after every election the polling companies learn from errors and do better the next time. Especially following the every four year Presidential Silly Season.

        One other curios observation I read recently. The GOP has not been publishing its own polling results. That’s usually a sign the results are too worrisome for them to spin.

        1. avatar Texican says:

          All the pollsters are trying to make Biden look electable. They are straight up lying. The same professor who predicted Trump’s 2016 victory, Helmut Norpoth gives him a 91% chance of victory in 2020.

        2. avatar jwm says:

          Polls mean diddly. They’re rigged to whoever commissions them. I can tell you that here in the heart of liberal land, the bay area, that the same thing is happening now that happened in 16. I see no real support for biden as I saw no real support for hillary.

          I’ve seen crowds with flags and banners for Trump. I said he would win in 16 and I say he will win in 20.

    3. avatar Someone says:

      No, let’s spend the time working to make the numbers better! Campaign for your rights!

      And let Biden out of the basement and let him discuss some issues. He will help us immensely once he opens his mouth without teleprompter.

      1. avatar Bill says:

        Well said Someone all we need is for Sleepy Joe to speak and his dumbass will shine through

  13. avatar Matt in Oklahoma says:

    You got money and can buy a gun. Nothing new

  14. avatar chedolf says:

    Boomer conservatives: Diversity is great. Check out how diverse we are. We’re so diverse!

    Normal people: Who cares?

    1. avatar Dan W says:

      Diverse people: kill whitey.

      1. avatar TomCods says:

        Whitey shoots back…very well.

  15. avatar Darkman says:

    Iowa had 23000+ carry permits issued from Jan.-June in 2019. 32000+ this year in same time span. 8000+ in June alone. People are arming up. Ammunition is difficult to find especially 9mm and 223/556. For those needing it. Very few firearms available at local shops. Except shotguns. Even 22’s are hard to come by. Between the Chinese Flu and the BLM riots. There has been a bigger run on firearms and ammo buying. Than when everyone thought HildaBeast was going to be elected. Keep Your Powder Dry.

  16. avatar Jimmy Beam says:

    When the time comes, the commies in Antifa and Burn, Loot, Murder will get their firearms, strict gun control or not. Meanwhile, any sane person defending their lives against the mob will be prosecuted and red-flagged by Soros-backed DAs and their toadies in law enforcement, the latter not wanting to lose their platinum pensions. Just like there are snitch lines for people not falling for the mask BS, there will be snitch lines to rat on anyone who has guns.

    And many of the “new gun owners” that everyone is so excited about will go along every step of the way. They will relinquish their firearms when told.

  17. avatar bill says:

    Need to get Gun Stores to Inform new gun owners about supoporting the second amemdment more.

  18. avatar GS650G says:

    It’s going to take an awful lot of people coming to their senses this fall to beat this blue wave back. The media is never going to let go of their narratives that Trump has to go. People need to realize Democrat controlled areas are where the problems are and somehow get them out. We like to think elections accomplish that but we also know better.

  19. avatar gus says:

    Dem/prog/lib/lefties have always been control freaks and their anti-gun bullshit was just lies. there has always been all sorts of reasons for many different groups of people to own guns. protection for all different reasons, hunting for all different reasons, shooting sports for all different reasons, even just showing off guns on social media… for all different reasons.

    they try to get rid of guns for all different reasons they cook up, and it never matches the reasons 100 other groups of people have guns, or even matches the truth about the one group they’re picking on at the moment.

    a right is not about reasons or utility or “what good does this do”. DO YOU HAVE THE RIGHT OR NOT.

    as a free man, you have the right to free speech, the right to bear arms, the right to vote however you want, the right to be secure in your house, property, papers, the right to free association, on and on and on.

    and those who tell you that you don’t have the right to bear arms, can kiss the asses of everyone else who doesn’t buy that bullshit.

    gun owners know that to protect others’ rights, is to protect their own rights; others can exercise it or not. anti-gun dem/prog/lib/lefties are the opposite. they want to take away your rights, to guns and other rights, so they can be in control. one is truthful and just, the other is full of lies and injustice. let there be no illusion.

  20. avatar George Washington says:

    Yeah…. that’s ALL we need…. “a more diverse gun community”….. nothing could POSSIBLY go wrong with that scenario….jeez….
    I realize a lot of the “POTG” are rural country folks, but that’s no excuse to support gun ownership by POTGhetto…
    This doesn’t end well for real AMERICANS……. JUS SAYIN’

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