Gun Sales Soar 56% Among Black Americans Amid Skyrocketing Crime and “Defund Police” Movement
While gun sales in general rose sharply across the board in 2020 due to a pandemic, widespread riots and looting, a movement to “defund the police,” and a new administration that threatens to push a gun control agenda, sales among black Americans stood out as particularly strong.
From Just the News:
Gun sales among black Americans skyrocketed by 56% in 2020, partly in response to a push to “defund police” leaving many Americans worried about protecting themselves, according to a gun expert with Gun Owners of America.
“They understand that their safety is truly in their own hands,” gun rights expert Antonia Okafor Cover said of the spike in sales among black Americans. “If you’re going to defend the police, then it really is going to be up to you to be able to take care of yourself and those you care about.”
As a black American herself, Okafor Cover sees the trend as a larger reflection of the record setting support for Donald Trump among many in the African-American community.
“People finally realize that we have to have someone who is protecting our rights in the White House and in the Congress, as well on the city and municipal level and at the state level as well,” Okafor Cover said. “And really, that’s the only reason why the government should be there in the first place, is to protect our individual freedoms.”
Freshmen Rep. Burgess Owens, another black American that supported Trump agreed that the country’s black population is starting to see they “can’t depend” on police for their safety.
“It’s a matter of what we all believe, I don’t care what color we are,” Owens said, pointing to some cities that have been hit by calls to defund police. “Of course, people will say, ‘Well, I want to make sure that I’m protecting myself. If I can’t depend on someone else, can’t depend on the police department, or whoever it might be, I’m going to make sure I’m taking that into my own hands.”
“We should all take that same responsibility,” Owens continued. “And I think that’s what you find in the black community today.”
That new push to defund police was reflected most in gun sales for both women, first-time buyers and African-Americans:
The National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF), a trade association monitoring gun sales and industry trends, estimates that 8.4 million, or 40%, of those gun sales were for first-time gun buyers.
NSSF reported that women accounted for 40% of all sales, and purchases by African-Americans increased by 56% compared to 2019.
A summer of unrest caused mostly by social justice protests would often result in an increase in police funding and activity, but that all changed in 2020. Minneapolis, Seattle and New York City have all moved quickly to pull funds away from their police departments, despite a widespread spike in violent crime across the country’s urban areas.
Police that remain in the cities may also be reluctant to respond to calls, in large part thanks to the trend of accusing officers of racism whenever a high-profile incident happens.
“I’ve been saying this for about seven years, that there’s a direct correlation between a police nullification, or what some call the ‘Ferguson effect,’ and crime and violence in these communities,” said civil right activist Bob Woodson. “Because it means that the police are going to be accused of racism. Then they’re not going to pursue crimes as aggressively. And as a result, the murder rate goes up.”
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