Guns

More Liberals Bearing Arms After Trump's Win

| by Lauren Briggs

Gun advocates are typically seen as conservative, but that could soon change, as more and more liberals are purchasing their own guns and joining gun clubs in the wake of President-elect Donald Trump winning the 2016 presidential election.

Nationwide firearm sales surged in October, along with right-wing fears that Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton would toughen up gun laws had she won the presidency, notes the BBC. When Trump defied polls and pundits in a surprise victory, gun manufacturing shares plummeted by 18 percent as gun enthusiasts were expected to slow down their purchases.

But that's not what happened at all.

When Black Friday hit on Nov. 25, 185,713 people submitted FBI background checks, which is the most ever recorded on a single day.

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"A lot of people are worried that not only will [a Trump presidency] fail but that it will fail spectacularly to the point that we are going to end up on in one or more critical situations that we are just not prepared for," 36-year-old Jeff, a member of the Liberal Prepper Facebook group, told the BBC.

Indeed, multiple liberal and progressive gun organizations, including the Liberal Gun Club, have reported a surge in memberships and interest in guns, with many left-leaning new firearm owners saying that they fear harassment and physical attacks from Trump supporters.

Some gun trend watchers say that sales have broken records because most gun stores ordered massive surpluses of firearms and ammunition, in anticipation of a Clinton victory, so they deeply discounted the weapons to try and sell them quickly.

"We were gearing up for a much different result," Rick Friedman, the co-owner of New Jersey gun store and firing range RTSP, told CNN Money. "[But] if you're in this industry you're obviously very happy about the result."

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Friedman said that he stocked up between eight and 12 months' worth of ammunition to prepare for the surge in case Clinton had won.

Still, reports show that "non-traditional" gun buyers, including African Americans and other minorities, have been showing up at gun stores and shooting ranges at increased rates since the election, notes the BBC.

"We are not preparing for a battle with the federal government but we are preparing for if we have local chaos," a 70-year-old lifelong Democrat, known online as BlytheBonnie, who runs the Liberal Prepper group, told the BBC. "Like they have had with some of the police shootings."

Sources: BBC, CNN Money / Photo credit: Peretz Partensky/Flickr

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