Gun Room Portland, Oregon
Courtesy Yelp
Gun Room Portland, Oregon
Courtesy Yelp

“I’ve been here my whole life doing this,” said [Gun Room owner Shaun] Lacasse, whose father opened the [Portland, Oregon] store in 1965. “I’m 52 years old, I grew up behind this counter. I’ve never seen anything like yesterday.”

It’s impossible to know what proportion of the increased sales were from first-time buyers since that data is not collected. But Lacasse said most of his customers were buying their first firearm. And more than a few were nurses and doctors.

Asked what he thought people were scared of, Lacasse answered with a laugh, “Everything. They’re buying guns and ammunition so they can go home and sit on their couch and defend their stash of toilet paper from the pending apocalypse.”

Ultimately, he said, it’s all about feeling good. Buying guns — like buying toilet paper — is a type of pandemic retail therapy.

– Jonathan Levinson in Surge In Gun Purchases Leading To Concerns Of Violence During Pandemic

142 COMMENTS

    • If it feels good do it. Thet foreign language at the end of your post. Does that say,”I’ve got a sticky hand.” ?

      • “Thet foreign language at the end of your post. Does that say,”I’ve got a sticky hand.” ?”

        It’s Greek to me.

        • There are several million Orthodox Christians in the U.S. including Greek Orthodox.

          Mind you, I am not arguing against congratulating Easter to anybody, I’m just noting that there is a difference in calendars, that’s all.

      • “You are a week early…”

        That is true. But the message resounds, regardless.

        (I admit to being guilty of cultural appropriation)

        • There is nothing wrong with good wishes, be they late, early or timely.

          The Greeks don’t mind “cultural appropriation” either. In fact, they are quite used to it, over the ages.

          🙂

        • “The Greeks don’t mind “cultural appropriation” either. In fact, they are quite used to it, over the ages.”

          Ain’t it thuh truth? Ain’t it thuh truth?
          -B. Lahr

        • “Sam, Nice OZ reference.”

          We aim to please, so you aim too, please.

          Do you know how OZ became the location name?

    • “People buying guns because “feelz”.”

      Mostly that’s why people buy anything, from a car or kitchen widget to an ideology. Religious, political or both it doesn’t matter.

      Shopping at a time like this is, in fact, a form of therapy. When their life gets out of control people try to exert control over some part of it by making choices. This makes them feel better.

      In this case it’s buying guns but at root it’s the same thing as a person who just lost their job picking a new color of socks. It’s a known pattern of behavior that’s linked in some ways to why camouflage works and why people think that mass shootings happen every day. I’ve discussed it at relative length here before.

      The number of times people actually sit down, rationally decide what they need, and purchase only what they need is exceedingly rare, it’s even rare across the “buying life” of people who tend to operate mostly on logic and calculation. Honestly, the only people significantly immune to this are people with notable traits of psychopathy.

      • “Honestly, the only people significantly immune to this are people with notable traits of psychopathy.”

        Interesting.

        It seemed prudent to challenge any decision with the question or whether the decision would primarily (even exclusively) benefit only me. If the answer was/is “Yes”, the decision needs further analysis and contemplation. Such an approach is not perfect, we all fool ourselves sometimes. When it came time to buy a car, the question was whether the vehicle was a tool, or a statement. One mitigation was/is to only buy used cars. I lived a lifetime in practical, sensible vehicles.

        When it came to buying the first firearm (the famous Beretta Neos .22 plinker), the question (from the Colonel) was, “What for?”. The actual answer was/is “just in case”, and I needed to find something I could afford, and actually be accurate with. It has been years now, trying to objectively justify a more versatile weapon, and one below $500 (including practice ammo).

        To date, every firearm I wanted to buy has been over $500, and the ammo too expensive to maintain competence. That is not to mention that the real reason for a different firearm is because there are so many “cool” offerings, and the motivation is mostly just having something more. Today is the first time I have ever needed to evaluate whether my decision-making process identifies me as psychopathic. Thanks, Nine.

        • I would suggest that your reasoning behind the initial purchase indicates that you don’t have serious issues with mental pathology.

          “Just in case” is something that you might justify to yourself as “cold logic” but it’s not. It’s at least partially emotional because it’s not based on actual hard, calculated probability or the inevitability of circumstances demanding that you have such a thing. You really can’t “fully” justify this in a purely logical sense without the ability to see the future or a time machine, neither of which I have any reason to believe you possess. Hence why I say that such people are exceedingly rare, if in fact they exist at all.

          It is however interesting to note that your thought process here brings up a sticky question, one I’ve avoided broaching here for quite literally years because I pretty well know the reaction it will provoke in many people. But perhaps I’ll pose the question to you just to see what conclusions you come to, no time like the present and whatnot.

          In a philosophical sense civil rights logically grow from the natural right to life (and happiness depending on your school of thought). These are the limits of natural rights and all other rights grow from them via logic. So, many people generally think that owning a gun is a civil right. Fair enough. However, rights are things that exist under all circumstances in which we exist. We also know that the rights of one person end where they intrude on the rights of another person. This is why we say that “rights are not unlimited”. For if rights were truly unlimited theft, murder, rape etc would not be intrinsically immoral acts but rather ones we could justify morally/ethically in the right circumstances (in fact we sometimes do for theft, but ignore that because those waters get deep pretty quick and are unrelated to where I’m going). From a philosophical point of view we’d be right back in Hobbes’ “state of nature” and everyone would do whatever they wanted until they died or ran up against someone they couldn’t overpower.

          Given those commonly accepted constraints on our rights and the state of modern technology, can we find places currently available or theoretically possible within the scope of current or rationally expected technology where the immediate possession of a current day firearm would constitute a threat to the natural rights of others? I think we can. Space travel.

          So, is owning or bearing a gun an actual right, or is one or the other (or both) a privilege afforded us by life on this planet, and therefore something that can be morally/ethically restricted at certain points?

        • “So, is owning or bearing a gun an actual right, or is one or the other (or both) a privilege afforded us by life on this planet, and therefore something that can be morally/ethically restricted at certain points?”

          The issue goes well beyond firearms. It goes to the heart of the concept of “morality”, and who determines what is/is not moral. More interesting is your example of space travel presenting a situation where theme possession of a firearm poses a threat to the civil rights of others. Why is space travel special?

        • “Just in case” is something that you might justify to yourself as “cold logic” but it’s not. It’s at least partially emotional because it’s not based on actual hard, calculated probability or the inevitability of circumstances demanding that you have such a thing. ”

          The JIC is based on the consideration that hundreds of thousands of DGUs apparently happen each year, events that do not show up as actual shootings. However, if one looks at the quadrillion of personal interactions that happen within the population on a given day, the likelihood of any one of the interactions requiring self-defense is minuscule. Rather than feelings, I looked at the risk management cube, and decided a 5 impact far outweighs a 1 likelihood.

          “From a philosophical point of view we’d be right back in Hobbes’ “state of nature” and everyone would do whatever they wanted until they died or ran up against someone they couldn’t overpower.”

          The law of the jungle is hidden beneath a very thin veneer of “civilization”. The game is the same, the expression of power a bit more courteous. We are not as far from Hobbes as we pretend.

          “So, is owning or bearing a gun an actual right, or is one or the other (or both) a privilege afforded us by life on this planet.”

          Is owning or bearing any weapon an actual right? Starting with the idea that the only effective rights are those the individual can defend, the natural, human and civil right ofautodefensa has no morally justified constraint on the weapon possessed, only an economic constraint (whatever a person can afford to defend natural rights).

        • “Why is space travel special?”

          In and of itself it’s not. You can come up with a bunch of these quandaries. I just picked that one.

          It’s not really a question, in this case, of what is and what is not moral, in some ways that’s comparatively shallow, but rather this is a question how far rights extend and when they become privileges. The core question being what is and what is not actually a “right”. This question has a bunch of tension in it, just like asking if happiness is a right and what the implications of that question and the various answers to it are.

          There’s an entirely rational argument to be made that the possession of firearms is not a right at all, not even a civil right, but rather that firearms are by their very nature a privilege which rightly can be regulated under certain circumstances. Those circumstances then are defined by other rights, morals and rules that generally are not considered as part of the “2A argument”.

        • If one accepts that all organisms are a life form, and that survival is the prime directive of those organisms, then it is difficult to contend that life is not a natural right. Of course, on can posit that nothing we observe is more than “luck”, and that without moral foundation, but such a discussion doesn’t go anywhere.

          If life is a natural right, then defense is a natural imperative. Defense of that life cannot be subject to artificial, transitory, ideas of moral constraints on that defense. Otherwise, life is not a right at all, and is, as you ask, merely a privilege granted by whatever generates life, and other life forms having more power.

          In the natural world (animal), there are no external constraints on the mechanisms used in defense of the animal; by whatever means necessary, and capable. If humans are part of the natural order, how are constraints on the means of self-preservation/defense justified? Firearms are merely the follow-on development of tools of survival/self-defense. Where is the natural authority that dictates, “This you may do to perpetuate self-survival, but nothing more?

          Now, it is one matter to consider only the instance of the individual (whatever) surviving by any means necessary, but in combination with other individuals, the opportunity for the rights of one to conflict with the rights of another is introduced. However, in analyzing the right of self-defense (preservation), when do rights come into conflict? If conflict actually arises, what are the mechanisms for balancing the competitors? I think we call those civil and criminal laws. These laws mitigate the natural action of the strongest against the less strong. Laws rightly constrain one individual from asserting absolute rights over another’s absolute rights. But where is the natural, moral justification for law to inhibit natural rights on the theory that an individual may, at sometime, somehow, somewhere conflict with another’s natural rights? (which is the problem with Red Flag laws).

          To circle back, possession of firearms is merely the current evolution of self-defense for individuals. The fact that governments often abrogate individual rights does not mean the use of state-of-the-art self-defense tools are privileges, only that governments are natural predators of individual rights, predators to be restrained by the combined force (physical or political) of the individuals governed (this is all American Revolution 101).

          To advocate that punishment for misuse of firearms must exist in order to prosper society, is not the same as declaring that firearm possession is privilege. To declare that the natural right to self-defense can be legitimately constrained simply because of possible misuse does not avoid being an unjustified and egregious limitation on the use of effective tools of self-defense/survival. Pre-crime restrictions are not moral limits of natural rights.

        • “Rather than feelings, I looked at the risk management cube, and decided a 5 impact far outweighs a 1 likelihood.”

          Do you really believe that emotion played zero role in how you assessed things to arrive at those numbers? Of course it did. Judgement calls always do. Even if you broke it down as far as you could into actual hard numbers you’d still have to eventually make a decision on how to assign certain numbers which is not purely logical or based on fact.

          Not to mention the fact that the initial reason you asked the question in the first place is an intrinsically emotional argument at it’s base.

        • “Do you really believe that emotion played zero role in how you assessed things to arrive at those numbers.”

          No. The intent is not to eliminate all vestiges of “emotion”, but to limit the effect of the tendency to self-aggrandizement. Just as altruism is not possible if the “altruistic” person obtains any benefit (including self-satisfaction), complete objectivity is also impossible. The process is simply a mechanism to guide decisions such that personal gain does not harm, or diminish others…as sometimes it must, despite best intentions.

          So it is that if I actually buy another firearm, it is not because “I would simply like one, and feel good about it, but the purchase would be based primarily (which is not exclusively) on an analysis of performance increase in effecting self-defense. This process does not obtain if the question is whether to buy a pizza, or eat ice cream instead of kale.

        • OK, this ones long. Bear with me cause I’m wrapping a bunch of things from yesterday and today up together.

          Keep in mind that everything I’m saying here is through the lens of advertising/education and their relation to the public, politics and winning a debate that deals with crafting of law. I don’t GAF about one guy in a bar or some idiot soccer mom down the street, I care about statistics big enough to carry the day, though I’ve found the former two to good practice with this.

          “To declare that the natural right to self-defense can be legitimately constrained simply because of possible misuse does not avoid being an unjustified and egregious limitation on the use of effective tools of self-defense/survival.”

          So, like almost everyone, we agree that life is a right and defense of that life is a logical outgrowth of said natural right. However, you’ll note that there’s no right to be successful in this endeavor.

          There’s another element here and that’s the question of if happiness is a natural right. Some say yes, some say no. This one gets sticky because if happiness isn’t a natural right there’s really no logical way to construct it as a civil right and the implications loom large. This is also where philosophical utilitarians get involved because natural rights are, in their estimation, those things which have only intrinsic good. That is to say that they have no secondary utility where you can say “X is good because” it does something or makes something easier. We follow that line back to those things that are just good, intrinsically so, and we have Natural Rights. Those being life and happiness which is starting to sound a bit like a certain Declaration, no?

          This construct also makes it possible to say that things like rape are immoral under all circumstances.

          OK, so, this is where we come back to that discussion on Moral Luck vs. Control Theory. Kant held that you are responsible only for the things that you can control. Moral Luck holds that this is untrue, that actions which might have bad consequences for others are identical, morally speaking, regardless of outcome. For example, two people who are speeding are equally bad if one kills a pedestrian and the other does not.

          That seems appealing to people because, well putting others at risk is bad, speeding puts others at risk, it’s bad. It’s appealing to say that the first speeder “just got lucky” and the guy sitting in jail on a vehicular homicide charge got “unlucky” so we can throw the book at BOTH of them. It’s also entirely subjective and based on your opinion of what is and is not “too risky”.

          The root idea here is that any two people who do the same thing are on the same moral plane regardless of the outcome their action produces because of the things they can’t control. “Bad people” aren’t “bad”, they’re victims of circumstances like genetics and upbringing. That’s the basis of grabber logic right there and it’s exactly why “gun owners are bad people”. All gun owners are, morally, on par with James Holmes (or at least all the people who own similar firearms are). The only difference between you, or me and a mass murdering fuckhead boils down to things you and I can’t control and neither could Holmes. We’re not good and he’s not bad. It’s all luck. Hold this thought for a moment.

          So, again, is having a firearm a right or a privilege? As I said, there’s a perfectly logical argument to be made that in certain circumstances having a firearm is an unacceptable risk to other people’s natural right to life because if you used the gun for it’s intended purpose the chances of you ending the life of innocent people is really quite high, and in some cases 100%. That being the case your possession of a gun is a violation of their natural rights (though it may be a violation “in waiting”), logically speaking. In these very narrow circumstances your ability to possess a firearm could be curtailed and in that case it’s not really a right to have a gun. This, from a political and legal theory perspective is NOT a distinction without a difference. It’s a huge difference that cuts right to the very center of serious questions about things like “justice”.

          But the cool thing is that if we get all educated and shit we discover that whether or not it’s a privilege or a right doesn’t actually matter 99.999% of the time for two reasons.

          First, the 2A doesn’t say “the right to keep and bear firearms”, it just says “arms”. So sure, in certain circumstances there might be restrictions on which arms you can have but not a blanket prohibition. We can even accept this idea of limited restrictions and still win the argument for any circumstance we actually care about.

          Secondly, if we get back into the tension issues I mentioned earlier, and we eschew Moral Luck (that is to say we stop letting the grabbers switch back and forth between personal responsibility and blanket moral judgement at will so as to further their argument through subterfuge rather than actual argument and logic), then the question isn’t if you have the right to a gun at all. The question is actually whether or not anyone else has a right to tell you that you may not have a gun/type of gun and, if so, under what circumstances. If we get rid of Moral Luck then those circumstances are extremely limited, mostly to things you’d have been doing voluntarily anyway, like serving on submarines or on the ISS, where you voluntarily agreed to forebear the right/privilege anyway before you even got there. No more GFZs or gun control even though we admitted that guns aren’t really a right.

          So, again, back to James Holmes and us. Are we on the same moral plane? Again, like drunk driving, speeding or a host of other issues this is a fucking tempting thing for a lot of people to buy into when they’re afraid. However, the logic is clearly faulty. Take the logic and apply it to actions that are neutral. Now, juxtapose good and bad intent and apply it to those actions. Now, is Mohamed Atta on the same moral ground as Chesley Sullenberger? They’re both pilots. They both flew planes full of people. Are they the same in a moral manner of speaking? No? Well then Moral Luck is bullshit and we have an easy to understand example of how it’s bullshit.

          Take these long talks from the last couple of days, add in what I’ve talked about previously about advertising and pattern recognition, and regardless of how you feel about guns being a right or not, you’re not going to lose an argument to an anti if you understand this base philosophy and you can explain it quickly and concisely to an anti-gun person specifically because you understand it well enough to do so.

          And remember, convincing *them* isn’t the point. It’s the people watching. I tried this a couple months back, finally felt ready to really put it all to the test. 31 people in a room, mostly far more liberal than I am, I went 1v1 with someone and came out ahead 29-0 with everyone approaching me after the debate to ask questions and say things like “I never thought of it like that before!”.

          That’s one anecdote and I don’t claim this will be 100% successful because I know it won’t be but if we can use it like corporate America, and win often enough, then it doesn’t have to be. A consistent 5% lead is enough.

        • Coupla things….

          It may be unimportant to the overall thrust of your thinking, but the DOI does not declare happiness to be a right, of any kind. It is the “pursuit” of happiness identified as unalienable. This construct removes outcomes from the equation, entirely, for all purposes.

          In comparing two street racers, yes, both are equally bad for breaking a civil law (not a natural right). Both violated the social compact to operate vehicles in a safe manner, within the confines of the law. Both deserve the same punishment for speeding. But then, the two diverge, with one going even further, and violating the natural right to live of an innocent bystander. A person who violates a law without harming another is not as “bad”, by any human accounting, as a person who recklessly kills another person as a result of violating a law against street racing. Society differentiates these “bads” by assigning very different punishments. To use your example, both street racers were pilots, both operated high speed vehicles, one crashed and caused unwarranted death. Atta crashed and killed, Sullenberger crashed and did not kill.

          Regarding the lethality of arms, arms is arms is arms. The natural right to arms prescribes no limit, and proscribes no weapon. When considering the natural right of free citizens (as opposed to military or police, etc.) to bear arms, such persons may do as people in the military, and voluntarily suspend a measure of their natural right to arms. The civilian may decide that carrying a firearm in a crowded room is not prudent for the event, and leave the firearm outside. The person joining the military makes a specific decision that some natural rights will be curtailed (up to a point) for the duration of service. The government does not compel the civilian to enter the crowded room, nor does government compel the military member to enter the military. The natural rights remain available to both individuals, with only one temporarily delaying exercise of a certain level of natural rights.

          The point of protected natural rights is not to control the actions of the individual, but the government. The individuals did not surrender their rights. Government has no implied, actual, moral, or logical authority to determine the type and power of the arms held by the sovereign individual, who may grant limited powers to the government, at the pleasure of the individual (the citizenry). Government may only exercise such authority when the sovereign citizen consents, and only to the level of consent. Which brings into question just what “consent” means. The founders used the constitution to indicate what the citizens agree to permit government to intrude upon, and laws defining impermissible actions of the populace must be constrained by the constitution. It is the laws of government that are constrained from violating the “consent” of the people as codified in the constitution.

          Regarding the concept of marketing techniques to persuade more people to defend their natural rights, it is one of the themes I have pounded over the years; we are not “selling” our position on the Second Amendment properly. While in product success, a 5% lead may suffice to make the product profitable, with constitutionally protected rights, an overwhelming majority must be obtained and sustained in order prevent erosion of rights over time. If we are essentially split evenly, we are losing, and the feeder system of citizens (media, schools and entertainment) is generating more sales of elimination of rights than preservation of rights.

        • “… DOI does not declare happiness to be a right, of any kind…”

          There’s a particular reason for that; because no two people are made happy by the same thing(s). You are free to pursue those things which make YOU happy, which may vary from those things that make others happy. On top of that, the word “liberty” is in their as well. The Founders were essentially covering all their philosophical bases because there’s a strain of utilitarianism, popular at the time and rightly so IMHO, that considers “freedom” to be a natural right that includes happiness but the definitions for “freedom” get a bit wonky depending on who you might be reading.

          Further, you may just be unhappy because reasons. The right to something doesn’t mean that you automatically get it or that “it” is forced upon you. The fact that you have a right to something doesn’t mean you have to “use” the right, you may choose not to. The right to free speech covers the right to say things that you and I probably never would, that doesn’t mean we aren’t free to say them should we choose to say those things. The Founders understood this in a way that those who crafted the Soviet Constitution didn’t.

          “A person who violates a law without harming another is not as “bad”, by any human accounting, as…”

          Yes, they are. That’s the entire point of Moral Luck. It’s a disgusting theory but it is what it is and unintentional/undetected adherence to it via ignorance is common. Portions of our legal system use this as a basis for their legitimacy, gun control is one of them.

          “The natural right to arms prescribes no limit, and proscribes no weapon.”

          First, it can’t be a natural right. It’s a secondary right that logically grows the from the natural right of life and our ability to understand this and interact with/shape our world.

          Second, even if it was a natural right, it’s not unlimited. The edges of that right end where infringement on the right(s) of another begins. The question is where that is. If you believe in Moral Luck then, by definition, you don’t believe in Free Will nor do you believe that one can be “responsible” with an item or an action because the outcome is 100% luck. Atta wasn’t a “bad guy”. He was unlucky in numerous ways. Bad genes, bad parenting, bad living environment, manipulated by others. The outcome was not his fault. Why exactly doesn’t matter. What matters is that he and Sully are moral equals because the outcome wasn’t within their control.

          If you buy that then the question isn’t what the limit of the right is but rather what the limit of the permissible infringement is (and there isn’t one because everything is luck and no one can be trusted, that’s literally the point of the theory). My point is that people buy into this selectively without realizing what they’re doing.

          [You’ll note that “what’s the limit of permissible infringement is” is pretty much what the antis are saying when they say “I support the 2A but…” or “No one is saying…” and then propose a gun control law. So, of course they are. We know they are. We’ve known it for years. I’m just laying out the philosophical underpinnings they don’t want to explain because if they did most people would recoil in abject horror.]

          “The point of protected natural rights is not to control the actions of the individual, but the government.”

          No. The point of rights, if indeed they exist at all, is that NO ONE may control those actions which are protected by rights. You have the right to defend yourself against attempts to murder or silence you by anyone, not just government agents.

          Further, “government” is another word for “society” and “society” is another word for “mutual forbearance”. If someone doesn’t like it (that is, does not consent) then they may leave. The fact that you’re here after attaining the age of majority (and having used the resources of others during your time growing up here) is de facto consent. The fact that there’s nowhere *better* to go doesn’t change these facts, reality is a shitty constraint on life but it’s always there and reality, in and of itself, isn’t trampling anyone’s rights. This has always been an issue with Philosophical Anarchy. The other being that in actual practice it goes directly back to the “state of nature” and even anarchists don’t seem to much like that.

          “…an overwhelming majority must be obtained and sustained in order prevent erosion of rights over time.”

          Nah, just 1%. Rights are being eroded by politicians. That doesn’t happen if the ones who would attack your rights don’t get the chance because they never got into office. If 55% of people consistently voted “freedom” we wouldn’t be having this conversation. The fact that it’s a minority, and that in reality the other side has a significant MAJORITY, is why we’re talking about this in the first place.

        • Not sure there is logic in the premise that one has a right to life, but not the equal, and implicit, right to protect it by whatever means necessary. An extension of a natural right is not rank ordered (secondary, tertiary, etc). A ranking of rights means some sort of forum must exist to determine the limits of those subordinated rights.

          The idea that participation in society de facto grants consent is curious. That is so because then society has a superior right to limit your natural rights where those rights impinge on no other individual. Seems a logical inconsistency. Doesn’t mean that such is not the historical practice. This is why I hold that natural rights are, by nature (chuckle) absolute, or they are not. Absolute rights cannot be absolute some of the time, based on personal bias, or tribal superstition. And there the problem begins. If natural rights can be limited by society, what is the limit of that right of limitation? Where does such natural right of society to limit natural rights originate?

          Cannot find any logical or moral underpinning for the idea that depth of badness is irrelevant. Well, there is one, but not acceptable to the “great” thinkers. The logical extension for having no gradation of “badness” is that one punishment is, and must be, assigned to any category of violation of “goodness”. In the samples we are using, both street racers must be ticketed and fined, but nothing further exacted. Or, both street racers must suffer the harshest of punishments. All of which asks the question, “Is there a natural, moral, means of redemption for violators of the natural order? If so, how is such redemption/redress rendered? If not, what is the point in honoring the natural rights of anyone? Kidnapping comes to mind: death penalty for kidnapping; death penalty for murdering the victim; death penalty for murdering witnesses. Does not “logic” demand that punishment for one form of natural rights violation not induce further forms of violation?

          The idea that owning guns makes one “bad” seems to be internally contradictory. One must support the notion that people are inherently “good”, but the act of obtaining a firearm transforms the condition from “good” to “bad”, all the while ignoring the concept that obtaining the firearm is not transformative, but indicative: the purchase doesn’t make one “bad”, one must already be “bad”, demonstrated by evidence of the fact that the individual obtained a gun. Without an immutable universal, cosmic standard (enforced by who/what?) of “good” and “bad”, flexible standards must substitute, leaving us ultimately with no real standards at all.

          The concept of 1% or 5% majority is sufficient to gain victory runs counter to all the revolutions of all history. It is the demonstrable minority that launches revolution. Sometimes the minority wins the revolution, sometimes not. Most failures seem to point to an overwhelming majority of the population opposing the revolution, or simply choosing to go along with the current power holder. This is why I continue to state that only an overwhelming majority of voters (counter revolution) demanding infringements of the Second Amendment be stopped, or rolled back, will suffice. The conundrum is that arriving at that overwhelming majority demands the coalition include people who would be happy to repeal other natural rights.

        • Thank you both for reminding me (again) why I still come back to TTAG. I spent some interesting and enlightening time reading up on moral luck and control over the weekend because of it.

          One question, though, for Strych9: Are you trying to tell me that you had a debate with an anti-gun person and it DIDN’T devolve into “progressive” shrieking and poop-flinging? Or did it, and maybe that’s part of the reason you emerged the unanimous winner?

  1. Read the article. A lot of the usual anti-gun tropes. Some of the things I noticed…

    “I can always bring this back and sell it to them, I’m sure.” And will likely be quite upset when the store offers her about 1/2 – 2/3 what she paid for it, even if she never shot it.

    “Shelter in place may be the best way to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, but, according to University of Pennsylvania professor Susan Sorenson, it’s not the safest option for women who are in abusive relationships.” Perhaps not, but the best time to get out of an abusive relationship is the moment you realize it’s abusive. Then again, if the abusee is the one who’s armed, perhaps the abuser will think twice before dishing out more abuse.

    “And, she said, the risk of suicide is highest in the first six weeks after a person purchases a gun.” Granted that may be so in normal times. These aren’t normal times, when many more people who aren’t depressed, find themselves wanting to buy a gun than normal.

    And at this point I’m still amazed that any gun store owner will (knowingly) talk to any member of the press.

        • I don’t know guys. People in a panic are buying anything that is in the shop. When I picked up my last purchase this was just starting. 4-5 dudes hit the shop at nearly the same moment looking for Glocks. Shop owner told them they were out and couldn’t get any for at least a week. Add in a 10 day wait to that.. When I left they were all looking at what was in stock.

          If a Black Hawk in .45 is the only thing available it will sell. Kel Tec has always had trouble keeping up with demand.

          You don’t own a gun. You’re afraid and the only gun shop you can access has a single shot 20 ga. a tube fed .22 rifle and a .44 special Charter Arms you’re going to buy whichever one you can get a box of ammo with at purchase.

    • “And, she said, the risk of suicide is highest in the first six weeks after a person purchases a gun.”

      Well, duh. If suicidal people already had guns they’d be dead. If they just bought one then they’d probably use it within 6 weeks. Guns don’t make people suicidal like this beyotch trys to imply.

      • The defining characteristic of what passes for liberal these days is the ability to get literally *everything* that matters backwards.

  2. “The Gun Room” is probably the classiest gun store in the metro area. Northwest Armory is a close second (east store, not the west one in Tigard).
    I was in the west store the first week of March on my weekly search for a pinned barrel model 29. What a mad house. I was ready to jump behind the counter and work sales just to join the fun as nothing in the store interested me.

      • I once went to my local liquor store one afternoon to get a bottle before hurricane Elena hit the next morning. The place was jammed. The owner saw me (I’d known the guy since I was a kid through family) and he yelled “get your ass back here and help me!” I worked a register for about 3 hours. When the rush died down he filled a box with about 10 bottles of what my wife and I drank.

        He was an interesting cat.

        • “I once went to my local liquor store one afternoon to get a bottle before hurricane Elena hit the next morning.”

          I remember that one! It was a hurricane ‘tease’. At least you had your essential Florida hurricane ‘supplies’… 😉

    • The Gin Shop is a joke. Went in to buy an M&P a few years ago and was told that plastic guns explode…followed by some very old pictures of glocks. If you’re in the Portland area, Northwest, Keith’s Sporting Goods, or Kurts Discount Rifles. All good people without an attitude.

      And selling a first time gun owner a .38 snubbie is almost malpractice.

      • Eddy:
        “And selling a first time gun owner a .38 snubbie is almost malpractice.”

        I’m not a first time gun owner by a long shot (if you’ll pardon the pun). But I really like my S&W 642 snubbie.

        • I went with the full grip 60 stainless (J frame) in .357. Never could shoot the boot grip alloy J frame worth a damn.

      • The Gun room is not the place to go if you want anything made after 1970. Don’t mention anything plastic, or you will get one of the dumbest pitches on “plastic guns go kaboom” ever. They aren’t bad guys, they just have some outdated views on modern firearms and are unbending on them.

        Some of their guns have been there for 5-10 years collecting dust. I go there about once a year and look for specific guns. Yep, still there. I think that is probably due to price on certain firearms. Not all of their guns are over priced, but there are enough of them that certain sections aren’t moving product.

        Having said that, they have a lot of cool stuff in there. If you are looking for wood and steel, this is the place to go. I haven’t seen a store like it anywhere else in the states. It’s worth it to stop by, even if you aren’t going to buy anything.

        My favorite areas to look at:
        -Savage 99s – They have a ton of them. I still want one in .308.
        -M1903 and 03A3s- Lots of complete rifles and also a lot of parts. I bought a nice C stock for my sporterized 03A3 I put back to military specs
        -Milsurps- plenty of cool rifles and prices were decent. About the higher end of the market, but not gun show ridiculous.

        • The old man is the one who set the ridiculous pricing. If the kid has actually taken over, then it might be time to head down and make some deals. If nothing else, it’s fun to treat it like a museum that you can handle the firearms in.

    • The #1 rudest and least knowledgeable gun store staff I’ve ever encountered are at Oak Tree in northern L.A. County. Visited many times over a dozen years for trap/skeet fun, and each time I perused the pro shop afterward was a bad experience. Always rude, always think they know more than you do, and always have an “I’m an Operator and you’re not” attitude.

      The last and final time I was there several years ago (giving them one final chance to earn a sale from me), I was eyeing a pre-1899 Winchester lever action available on consignment, and asked if I could make a cash offer to take it home that same day (we have onerous requirements here in CA, including a 10-day wait). The employee, the employee next to him, and even the supervisor all acted like I was an ATF sleeper agent trying to catch them doing something illegal, and said all guns always require full BGCs and paperwork. When I reminded them that pre-1899 items are not considered to be firearms as per Federal or CA law, the supervisor insisted that there’s no such thing and waved me off. “All guns are guns.”

      That was the last straw. I’ve never gone back again.

    • What a toxic cunt you are. You’re representative of one of the biggest problems with the 2A community.

        • Tom, I don’t believe I’ve ever seen ‘audeo’ ever contribute anything of substance in TTAG, just pathetic sniveling attempts at insults.

          A pinned barrel ’29? Something for your inner Harry Callahan? 🙂

      • He is right. You are wrong. (And he doesn’t even call strangers on the internet names.)
        The whole article is built on idiotic up side down premise. It should read: ‘Concerns Of Violence During Pandemic Leading To Surge In Gun Purchases’.

        • Getting everything that matters backwards (especially liberty itself) is the defining characteristic of a modern “liberal.”

      • This is your rebuttal? Liberals / Progessives are all about making decisions based on emotion. This is why it is so dangerous.

        They are simply doing the herd mentality thing. Why do you think influencers are a thing? Because most people are easily lead into whatever stupid trend is currently going on.

        They did not suddenly become people of the gun. When this is all over they will either: Go back to guns are bad or guns for me because I am of superior intelligence and none for you.

        • “When this is all over…”

          This isn’t a typical blip on the radar, that will soon pass. The world has changed in dramatic ways already and will continue to change.

          The full size and scope of the pandemic remains to be fully seen. It may get really bad, or it may not.

          The full size and scope of the economic disruption remains to be seen. It is really bad already, and will probably get catastrophically bad.

          The full size and scope of attempted governmental overreach and abuse remains to be seen.

          Whatever comes of all this, one fact is apparent. The world has dramatically changed.

        • Yeah like the same things did not happen with other pandemics. We may of been overdue for one not that I want to see this happen.

          Over reaction? Perhaps, maybe some interesting courts cases, definatly. Sure they said the same thing about 1918 flu pandemic and so on. This has happened in the past and will happen again. Hopefully not again in my lifetime. We as a nation adapted and then resumed when everything was over.

          Your tin foil hat is on too tight.

        • Hillbilly,
          Pandemics (and other types of disasters) do come and go, and we were overdue for one.

          Some of us have built enough resilience into our lives that the impact should be minimal. That is good.

          Also, both good and bad things can come about as a result of a crisis. I hope much good will come in the aftermath of this one.

          Still, these sorts of things do often bring about lasting long term change. Look at 9/11. It was a smaller crisis than the present one, yet it resulted in continuous warfare in the Middle East to the present. Twenty years of war

          Moreover, politicians used it as an excuse to put the country deeper into debt, and to infringe on our liberties. Has the “Patriot Act” been repealed? Has the national debt shrunk?

          At present, at least sixteen million people have lost their jobs, and many businesses are being destroyed. The country is going trillions of dollars deeper into debt. All of this is going to dramatically affect the future.

          Life will certainly go on, and hopefully get even better, but it will certainly be different.

          You suggest that my tinfoil hat may be too tight. Perhaps that is true, or perhaps your “normalcy bias” is showing.

        • Dear Lord, you simply act like this has never happened before you either have never studied history or simply choose to ignore it.

          There will be numerous court challenges to all of this and we will get some definition of exactly how much interference Governement can have in the lives of citizens. The people currently being force quarantined are going to be an excellent court case. The biggest lie ever told by Governement is the right to public safety there is none and never will be. If that was the case the Governement would be liable for all crimes and so forth.

          Politicians can and will always push as far as they can go until the courts strike them down. This is how it is and always will be. They have been trying for years to repeal the Patriot Act, again this was passed with Republicans at the helm. Republicans I am told are supposed to be on the side of “freedom” especially on this forum yet they consistently act to the contrary. For me it was eye opening at that point I became a Libertarian. I always watch what a Politician does, not what they say, 911 was a very good example of that.

          Yes your tin foil hat is on way too tight. Trying to get people all bent out of shape over things no one has any control over right now speaks volumes about you.

      • Toxic or not, a cunt is a cunt, if the lady looks good and I can get a shot I am not going to say no. A cunt is a cunt, with a few exceptions of course.

  3. Easy to spot a newbe gun buyer. They don’t verify the chamber is cleared the moment the weapon is in their hands and the business end manages to scan most everyone in the vicinity. Hopefully these people will listen up and learn about firearms the easy way or let LE, EMS, attorneys, judges teach them the hard way.

    • Not to mention next of kin.

      I remember one class where the instructor put a “laser bullet” (boresighter, etc.) in a few of the pistols as a visual aid to help people learn muzzle discipline. It seemed to help, except for the yahoo decided to use it to point with.

    • Personally I’ve never been handed a loaded firegunm in a gunm shop. The easiest way to check the gunms not loaded is point it at the gunm shop dealers head and pull the trigger. They’ll think first before handing you a gunm again, loaded or not.. .

    • All my handguns (aside from my home & EDC, which are always loaded and ready) are “flagged” with a neon green zip tie before being put in the safe to indicate that they’re truly empty. The head of the tie sticks out of the port, and the tail sticks out of the muzzle. The choice of neon instead of standard white helps for confirmation in low light (I have a battery mounted light inside the safe, but it’s dark when you first open the door).

      • I have one safe that has nothing but loaded guns in it. The others are filled with empty weapons.

        And i have off site weapons for that just in case moment.

    • You are right about that. I wonder what they want for that Kimber bolt 22? I like my Zephyr a lot but that thing is nice.

  4. “Using a gun for self-defense is extremely rare.”

    Great research. Not.

    Or, as Ben Shapiro would say: great journalisming.

  5. Little bit late now, but were I an FFL I would make all new gun owners a laminated card with the 4 rules of gun safety.

    I would also slightly up charge them to subsidize or try to include free basic safety instruction at a local range after things get normal. If you can give it for free, you might make it back in repeat customers. Who buys just one gun?

    The purpose of the “free” training would be to get their ear for an hour.

    I’m pretty confident in my ability to have a rational and well thought out discussion (to open minded individuals) about why we should all be second amendment advocates and make polite rebuttals to the common anti gun talking points. I just need that opportunity and I’m sensing there is going to be a lot of great opportunities for all of us POTG with all the new owners.

    I just won a whole family of converts on Friday with my MP 15-22 and $10 of ammo.

  6. Feeling of fear –> rational recognition that you are your own first line of defense –> rational decision to purchase a gun. We all hope that leads to rational decisions to:

    — Get training
    — Practice
    — Learn about the 2A
    — Vote for liberty

    • “— Vote for liberty”

      You do realize that the anti-gunners, Leftists, liberals, progressives, statists believe that is exactly what they are doing?

      Liberty from fear
      Liberty from danger
      Liberty from threat
      Liberty from convention
      Liberty from criticism
      Liberty from restrictions on behavior
      Liberty from unpleasantness
      Liberty from opposition
      Liberty from self-reliance
      Liberty from personal responsibility

      Etc.

        • “Isn’t it lovely the was the left has re-defined liberty as enslavement?”

          George Orwell was the inspiration for the list.

  7. Tom, good luck on your quest for a pinned 29. I have a 6″ 629 and a 4″ 629 Mountain Gun. But a friend has a 4″ pinned 629 w/counter bored chambers. Only manufactured from ’79-’82. I have tried for years to get it from him. He won’t budge.

    • I’ll find one eventually. I could go the gunbroker route, but the lgs is mostly closed and not doing transfers like that.
      I’d love to find a 5” !

      • A 5″ is the Holy Frail. Ask Henry Bowman. (For the uninitiated he’s the main character of John Ross’s novel Unintended Consequences.) If you consider yourself a firearms patriot and you’ve not read this book, well….

  8. Okay so when I get my gov stimulus check I’m buying me an M14. I was going to get an AR but decided an m14 would probably be better?

        • Possum. If you truly want a .308 semi auto and you’re on a Budget ($600 or less) the newer version of the Century C308 with the PTR reciver is the way to go. Mags are still cheap, aluminum for $5/steel for $7 and the gun has mostly favorable reviews. They aren’t precision usually 2-3moa, but still a good battle rifle. If you can save up another $300 get the $900 PTR. Excellent rifle, and probably the closest to the HK91 you can get. In my neck of the woods a used HK91 in okay shape is $2500+

          Here is a link to the 7.62×51 PTRs https://ptr-us.com/products/7-62-x-51-mm/

      • Jeff, you’re right. I like them both, but I bought my first H&K circa 1982. Owned one, or more, since. Still, I’ve always said if you can’t shoot an M-1 rifle or an M-14/1A, you can’t shoot.

    • “I was going to get an AR but decided an m14 would probably be better?”

      Better? Well….the M-14 is heavier, if that counts.

        • “…an M-14 is both heavier and better than an AR”

          Wasn’t a fan of the M-14 because you don’t close the bolt the same way as with the M-1.

      • If you wanna rock a 7.62 battle rifle fit for the 21st century, go with the AR-10. If you want the ‘Nam aesthetic and can deal with a little BS from time to time, then the M-14/M1A platform is a fine choice. It’s all about what you want to get out of the rifle. Personally, I’d go with the AR-10 because of the aftermarket support and it’s still doable to build a rock solid rife on a budget. I hope this helps. Good luck

        • “Personally, I’d go with the AR-10…”

          Think I would like an AR-10 in .577 Snider. 15rd clipazine should do it.

        • I wanted an AR10 in “.510Beck” but I guess the cartridge was vaporware and never came amounted to anything. I currently roll with 308Win but my next AR10 will likely be either 300WM or 338LM. Big bullets ftw, more effective range over 5.56.

          TTAG is eating posts again.

      • Mark, even Eugene Stoner recognized the shortcomings of his design. He tried to rectify it with it with the AR-180 and the Stoner system. But, hey! It’s your life. Bet it on that that piece of shit if you want to.

        • Study some history. He didn’t try to rectify it with the AR-180. Armalite sold the rights to the AR15 to Colt and thus Stoner (being an employee) wasn’t able to do anything more with it. He perfected the AR10 by working on the SR-25 with Knights. The AR15 has been tweaked over the past 50 years to become the best service rifle our boys have ever used. There is a reason the M14 lasted less than a decade. And if you really think the AR15 is a pos then you are a full fucking retard. No one in their right mind would call the AR15 a pos.

      • I’ll argue and say it wasn’t that bad of a rifle, but the underhanded back dealings that leave a filthy taste in your mouth with the M14 is because the US military got screwed out of the FAL.

  9. Speaking of gun shopping. After paying-off med bill’s, I should have enough left from my quarterly bonus to purchase a new hedge trimmer (I have over 200 ft. of hedges), or a new gun. Not both. I have been trimming the hedges manually for years but it is a lot of work that causes other projects to be delayed. But a new gun is a satisfying reward, also. Any advice?

      • Sam I Am,

        I was eating kim-chi when I read this. You made me laugh and it went up my sinuses. Do you have any idea of how painful that is?

        🥵

        Still, a good laugh!

        • “I was eating kim-chi when I read this. You made me laugh and it went up my sinuses. ”

          It that what they mean by being “in deep kim-chi”?

    • Salt the roots of the hedges and get the gunm. That’s what I’d do, during the divorce sell the gunms to a trusted friend.

      • Do NOT sell your vacation house to your best friend/Attorney during a divorce. Especially at a really, really discounted price.

        it’s tough to get out of jail when your lawyer is in jail with you.

        Ask me how I know.

    • If you have more than 3 guns, get the hedge trimmer. Then start keeping a time log of all the time you save. Make sure the time you spend at the gun range is equal or greater to that time.

  10. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know that whenever there is a run on guns the price riseth. After 8 years of O we POTG know this. We already have our fill of needed arms and ammo. So yeah, who do you think is buying? All those ignorant folk who called us every ugly name in the dictionary.

  11. Have not experienced this need during the current apocalypse. However, at the end of the last holiday season, stress levels did weaken my budgetary resolve and two new firearms were added.

    So, hell yes, “Retail Therapy” does sometimes result in buying guns.

    Especially when on sale 😉

  12. Ha! One of the gun stores I brought in an AR-15 in the 70’s, was told never bring that kinda gun in here again, and never went back.

  13. It’s not just guns flying off the shelves , I could not find Easter candy for the grandkids. I went looking three days in a row six different stores were sold out.

  14. Or it’s just a sign that Americans are running out of stuff to buy that they’re worried about running out of. Potato chips, artisan energy drinks, and tactical gun cleaning swabs are next.

  15. Asked what he thought people were scared of, Lacasse answered with a laugh, “Everything. They’re buying guns and ammunition so they can go home and sit on their couch and defend their stash of toilet paper from the pending apocalypse.”

    I’ll suggest that Lacasse is an asshole.

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