It seems the fallout from the insanity of 2020 continues to stay in the public's mind. Even a year out from the panic buying craziness, riots, movement to defund the police, and the election of Joe Biden, Americans seem to have a new take on gun control.
According to a new poll, 63% of Americans support enforcing current gun laws instead of passing new gun control into law.
This change shouldn't be surprising for anyone who's lived through the past two years. With 2020 & 2021 bringing COVID, Lockdowns, panic buying, the massive BLM riots, and the movement to defund the police, it's no surprise that Americans are starting to oppose new gun control in more significant numbers.
A statistic that has helped shape that polling data is that millions of Americans became first-time gun owners during the pandemic. I experienced this rush of new gun buyers at The Machine Gun Nest, where we became completely inundated with first-time gun buyers. Many of those buyers had no idea that firearms required a background check (and a wait time here in Maryland). This process was a rude awakening for many of these same first-time buyers that everything they had learned about firearms being "easier to buy than books" was all just corporate media lies.
What's even more interesting is that the data changes come primarily from non-traditional gun owners, people who identify as political independents, and even Democrats. Recently there was a 15 point drop in support for strict gun control laws from independents, according to Gallup. Considering that 50% of all new gun owners in the past two years are women, and many more are minorities, it makes sense that attitudes are shifting.
It's a drastic change compared to pre-pandemic thinking. Just a few years ago, in 2018, after the mass shooting in Parkland, FL, support for gun control was at its highest point, with 66% of the country supporting new gun control legislation.
We also know that activist district attorneys like those in Philadelphia and other liberal cities often refuse to charge or prosecute criminals on firearms charges, leading to higher rates of violence in those same cities. In Philadelphia, out of 1,810 firearms cases in 2021 (that's more than 4 per day), 61.5% of cases were dismissed or withdrawn. Only 2.6% of those same cases (that's 47 total) were found guilty at trial. We at The Machine Gun Nest can speak from experience being in Maryland. Baltimore City is an example of these failed policies. It's no wonder with the failure even to prosecute violent criminals with gun crimes that Maryland residents are desperate to buy and carry firearms. It's also no wonder that the people of the United States, especially in these liberal jurisdictions, want the law enforced!
Another significant movement creating conversation and awareness that may have contributed to this new poll is the number of counties that have become 2nd Amendment Sanctuaries. The 2nd Amendment Sanctuary movement first gained attention when, in early 2020, the Governor of Virginia moved to pass an "Assault Weapons Ban," among other gun control measures. This gun control push triggered a massive response from the citizenry of VA (one of the most armed states per capita in the country). It caused many of Virginia's counties to become 2nd Amendment Sanctuaries, where the local government refuses to enforce gun control laws. This idea became so popular that 62.5% of counties in the United States are now 2nd Amendment Sanctuaries.
So why does all this matter? Well, the country's mood has shifted when it comes to firearms. This cultural change is reflected in government, where Democrats don't want to pursue gun control legislation whatsoever! A few days ago, Joe Biden marked the fourth anniversary of the mass shooting in Parkland, FL, by calling on Congress to pass new gun control legislation.
But Democrats don't seem to be interested, as reported by The Hill – Democrats don't seem to feel that there's enough support for new gun control to push the legislation!
Gun owners can take solace in the fact that, at least in Congress, the gun control agenda has stalled. This stalemate is, of course, why the Biden administration has been pushing gun control via executive fiat, using the ATF to circumvent the legislative process altogether. With hotly contested midterms and Presidential approval ratings plummeting, the Biden Administration will be looking for any scapegoat to rally their base back to vote. We've seen it recently with Biden trying to "rally around the flag" with the situation in Ukraine, and we know that gun control is food for the base so to speak. I'd expect Biden to announce that he's "solved the ghost gun issue" this spring when the ATF releases their new unconstitutional rules on frames and receivers.
The flip side of the gun control agenda stalling at the Federal level is that States will then take the issue into their own hands. We currently see some of the most egregious local gun control pushes yet, with San Jose, CA, requiring that gun owners purchase liability insurance for their firearms and pay a fee, which will be donated to an anti-gun group! Meanwhile, in Boulder, Colorado, local legislators have entirely thrown out State Preemption to pass a city-level assault weapons ban, literally balkanizing the State of Colorado legally in the process.
With the verdict for NYSRPA v Bruen on the horizon and many more legal battles ahead, 2022 will be a very interesting year for gun rights.
Video: A breakdown of how the country's mood towards firearms has shifted in just two years.