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VA – RETAILERS – ‘They’re buying everything’: Surge in gun sales set to break record

Pistols, revolvers, rifles and shotguns are flying off the shelves this year, with gun shops reporting huge demand for models geared toward self-defense. The run on guns coincides with the coronavirus crisis and deadly riots that have put Americans on guard. Nearly 26 million background checks were run through the FBI’s national instant check system through August, and this month’s totals could push the numbers past the record 28.3 million checks from all of 2019. “They’re buying everything,” said Steve Clark, who owns Clark Brothers Gun Shop in Fauquier County, Virginia. Some of his customers are opting for less popular firearms, figuring it will be easier to find ammunition for those models amid reports of ammo shortages among some retailers. “It’s across the board — it’s everything,” he said. “You can’t get near enough shotguns because people are looking for those for house defense.” For ammunition, he said interest in some calibers that had lost popularity, like the Smith & Wesson .40, have picked up again. “9s and .45s have always been popular, but the .40 had kind of dropped off after the police stopped [using it for] their primary caliber,” he said. Anecdotal evidence suggests that there has been an uptick in interest in gun safety classes, including some parents bringing their young children along to learn how to shoot properly. “We have five times as many people as normal — it’s off the charts,” Rick Green, who teaches self-defense courses in Austin, Texas, told The Washington Times this month. “It’s people from every walk of life, young, old. More than half are females.”  [full article]

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