Prodded by politicians and pundits who benefit from the hysteria, fear of an imminent crackdown on gun ownership has prompted an explosion in gun sales.
During President Barack Obama’s first term, many gun enthusiasts bought firearms in fear that the government would further restrict ownership.
Obama did address gun rights in his first term, once. He signed a law that allows people to bring guns onto federal land.
The fact that the fears did not materialize has not stopped a new round of rumors that the president will use his second term to focus on strict gun regulations. As a result, the firearms industry is among the bright spots in the manufacturing sector.
Background checks related to retail gun sales have increased 17 percent in the past year, approaching 1.5 million. The number of Alabamians undergoing the background checks increased by 37 percent from 2007 to 2011.
Some of the fears can be traced to concerns that Obama will bypass Congress through executive orders to enact steep ammunition taxes and other measures. Additional worries center on debunked conspiracy theories related to UN efforts aimed at reducing the illicit international trafficking of small arms.
With so many major financial issues facing the nation, there is little evidence Obama will burn political capital on gun control issues.
Recent high-profile shootings — including the one Tuesday in which a 22-year-old used a stolen AR-15 semi-automatic rifle to kill two, injure one and then kill himself — should start a national debate. The government should do more to make sure guns don’t end up in the wrong hands, while ensuring people have the ability to protect themselves.
It is a divisive issue, though, that Democrats will avoid if they want to maintain momentum gained in the 2012 election.
Gun dealers likely are happy to help perpetuate the rumor that strict controls are imminent. They are benefiting greatly from all the talk.
Not registered? Click here
|High School Sports||@DecaturPreps|