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Mass Shooting In Texas Followed 2 Years Of Surging U.S. Gun Sales


Breaking Business Mass Shooting In Texas Followed 2 Years Of Surging U. S. Gun Sales Zachary Snowdon Smith Forbes Staff I cover breaking news for Forbes.

May 25, 2022, 08:42pm EDT | Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Share to Linkedin Topline Tuesday’s mass shooting at a Texas elementary school—killing 19 children and two adults—followed more than two years of record-setting gun sales across the United States, a trend some researchers attribute to political upheavals and pandemic-related stresses. A man examines a rifle at a gun shop. Nik Wheeler/Corbis via Getty Images Key Facts Annual U.

S. firearm sales hit an all-time record of 22. 8 million (or 1.

9 million per month) in 2020, a 64% jump from the previous year, followed by a gradual decline to 19. 9 million (or 1. 66 million per month) in 2021 and an average of 1.

5 million per month in the first four months of this year—still well above pre-pandemic levels, according to figures from research firm Small Arms Analytics and Forecasting. Small Arms Analytics and Forecasting estimated 5. 9 million firearms were sold in the U.

S. during the first four months of 2022—down from around 7. 7 million in the first four months of 2021, but still substantially above 2019, when 4.

6 million firearms were sold over the same period. About 13. 8 million Americans bought a gun for the first time in 2020 and 2021, according to surveys of retailers conducted by the National Shooting Sports Foundation, a firearm industry association.

Firearm sales are often linked to crises, according to researchers from the Brookings Institution and Wellesley College: Sales initially spiked in March 2020, after then-President Donald Trump declared a national emergency over Covid-19 and the pandemic caused widespread economic and public safety fears, the researchers said. Sales also jumped amid protests over the May 2020 murder of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer, the researchers said—an additional 1. 4 million firearms were sold in the month following Floyd’s death.

Big Number 8. 8 million. That’s the annual average number of firearms produced in the U.

S. from 2014 to 2018, according to the National Shooting Sports Foundation. That includes 3.

9 million pistols, 3. 4 million rifles, 774,132 revolvers and 752,954 shotguns. The group has also estimated that around 20 million “modern sporting rifles”—its term for AR-15s and other similar guns—were either produced or imported into the U.

S. from 1990 to 2018. Surprising Fact In 2020, firearms deaths replaced motor vehicle accidents as the leading cause of death for Americans ages 1 to 19, according to an analysis of Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data published in the New England Journal of Medicine last week.

Meanwhile, the number of active shooter incidents reported by the FBI jumped from 30 in 2019 to 40 in 2020 and 61 in 2021, and total mass shootings were also up in the first two years of the pandemic. This increase in violence may have been caused in part by the psychological and financial stresses of the coronavirus pandemic, according to a September research letter published by JAMA Network. But the authors of the New England Journal of Medicine analysis also said the jump in firearms deaths corresponds with the Dickey Amendment , a 1996 legislative provision backed by the National Rifle Association that restricted federal funding for research into gun violence.

Key Background Tuesday’s attack in Uvalde was the deadliest U. S. elementary school shooting since the 2012 Sandy Hook attack in Connecticut, and it came less than two weeks after a shooting at a Buffalo supermarket killed 10.

Following the Uvalde attack, President Joe Biden urged legislators to pass “common-sense gun laws” and to defy the gun lobby. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R), a supporter of permissive gun regulations , blamed the shooting on mental illness, though the accused gunman had no known mental health record.

Abbott was accosted at a press conference Wednesday by Democratic gubernatorial candidate Beto O’Rourke, who accused Abbott of sharing responsibility for the shooting. Abbott dismissed O’Rourke’s accusation, remarking that people should lay aside “personal agendas. ” What To Watch For Historically, high-profile shootings have been followed by spikes in gun sales as consumers worry about the possibility of tighter gun restrictions.

Brookings Institution research found that gun sales increased by 3 million in the months following the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, which killed 20 children and invigorated calls for gun reform. Tangent A slim majority of Americans has consistently supported stricter gun laws for years, according to polling by Pew Research Group. However, the public is heavily divided along partisan lines on nearly every question regarding gun control: 81% of Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents believe gun laws should be stricter, compared to 20% of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents, according to an April 2021 Pew survey .

Pew also found last year that 73% of Democrats and just 20% of Republicans believe that stricter gun control would result in fewer mass shootings. Further Reading “As Gun Violence Became Deadliest Problem In America, Congress Cut Funding To Research Solutions — At The NRA’s Urging” (Forbes) “U. S.

Bought Almost 20 Million Guns Last Year — Second-Highest Year On Record” (Forbes) Follow me on LinkedIn . Send me a secure tip . Zachary Snowdon Smith Editorial Standards Print Reprints & Permissions.

From: forbes

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