On Fear, Gun Shows, and What's Next

Last weekend, I worked a table promoting my survival classes at the SGK Gun Show in Doswell, Virginia. Let me tell you, if the gun shows throughout the rest of the country are like this one, they'll be packed with people and deep conversation.

The show was incredibly busy on Saturday and by the end of the first day, many of my neighboring vendors admitted to me that they had just seen their best sales day - ever.

These heavy sales were no surprise at all. There was a lot of talk at the show addressing the 1994 Federal Assault Weapons Ban (AWB) and concern over a repeat of that ban. Many people felt that the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut would be just the fuel that gun-ban proponents needed to limit or eliminate things like AR-15s and high-capacity magazines. Many customers were buying what they could, while they could.

The booth to my left was set up by the Virginia Citizens Defense League, Inc. This group explains their mission as being a state-level, more aggressive version of the NRA.

I asked one of the gentlemen running the booth: "Why were so many people at this show … What does it mean?"

To paraphrase him, he responded that people are scared. The worst part is that they don't know why they are scared. "We are sailing in uncharted waters," he said. With the economy in bad shape, and possibly getting worse, people don't know what their way of life will be like in the future.

Seniors don't know if their social security checks will stop coming, and there are 2 million people out there wondering if their unemployment will run out. People also don't know when the next atrocity will occur at the hands of domestic or foreign terrorists. Finally, people who just want to protect themselves don't know if the availability of ammunition or guns will be choked off. In short, I think a lot of people in this country have so many different things concerning them, that they don't know which thing to be more worried about.

What does all this mean to you? Please share your thoughts by leaving a thoughtful comment.