FMG Publications Readers Let Us Know
What’s On Their Minds.
Readers Speak Out.
Roy Huntington — publisher of FMG Publications’ consumer and law enforcement titles, including GUNS Magazine, American Handgunner and American COP — offers his perspective on the state of the industry. How are readers responding to recent attacks on the firearms industry? What products are being snapped up by consumers? And what does this mean for not only our livelihoods, but our rights as Americans? Read on for Roy’s take.
The unparalleled buying frenzy in our industry — due to fears of government confiscation of guns and ammunition — remains in high gear. Readers report prices seen — and paid — at recent gun shows are, simply put, outlandish. Bricks of basic .22 LR are going for $75 to $100, and centerfire ammo — if you can find it — is triple or quadruple the normal price. The “regular” price of most .223 right now seems to be between $1 to $1.50 a round. Industry sources tell me .22 LR is pretty much dried up at the retail level, with 9mm virtually impossible to find.
Interestingly enough, dealers have reported to me when the first inkling of the gun-grab by Obama became public, not only did AR-style rifles (modern sporting rifles) fly off the shelves, along with magazines, but .22 rifles and handguns sold strongly, as well.
“I’m seeing new customers — not really ‘regular’ gun buyers — coming in to look,” said Brandon, of Brandon’s Guns, in Joplin, Mo., where I live. “They often don’t want to spend the money on an AR, so they are opting for a Ruger 10/22 or similar. The AR-style .22 rifles are extremely popular with that crowd. They seem to want to have a gun of some kind, and feel safe with a .22 as a first purchase.”
While supply and demand has certainly caused prices to rise, the shortage is a self-fabricated one, done by the buyers themselves. Unlike what many conspiracy theorists and “preppers” may like to think, the government is not controlling the ammunition manufacturing or the raw goods flow. Ammo is scarce simply because gun owners are buying it as fast — faster, actually — than it can be made. Hornady recently came out with a public statement to counter rumors, basically saying, “Hey, we’re doing the best we can, and no … there is no government intervention for us to stop making any ammo.”
What’s really caught my attention during this is the fact I’m hearing from a broad cross-section of readers who are normally a silent majority. I call them the “centrists,” but on our side of the fence. They like and own guns, but tend to not get too excited about politics or gun-grabbing tactics, and tend to now be NRA members. The latest from the Obama administration and the likes of Schumer and Feinstein, however, have raised the ire of this same crowd.
“The attempt to deprive us of our right to own firearms to defend ourselves smacks of a dictatorial government move to ‘protect’ us from ourselves — and I won’t stand for it,” read one note I received. These readers are telling me they don’t fear Obama or his administration so much as they fear the government. The ongoing grab for executive power and the fact many politicians are “thinking” for us these days has raised genuine concern among citizens who are not normally quick to raise their eyebrows.
As one reader put it: “They are forgetting they are our employees, not our nursemaids and providers, and should be doing what we tell them to do, not making decisions for us.” Another said, “We need to put them on notice — now — and take control of our lives back from the government.”
I don’t think it can be said any more clearly than that.
While we bask in the glow of unprecedented business excess, let’s still plan for when the switch is suddenly turned off. We need to also work closely together to help get that control back from this rampant government, so both our industry — and our lives — are safe and sound.
If you’re not a member of the NRA and the NSSF — join. If you have employees, think about offering to help defray the cost of NRA memberships for them. Click on www.shootingindustry.com/do-something to send letters to government representatives. Get involved.
Drop me a note at firstname.lastname@example.org and tell me what you think about all this.
From The Publisher Of American Handgunner and GUNS Magazine: