US President Barack Obama’s latest push for tougher gun laws, in the wake of last week’s deadly shooting at an Oregan Community College, has radically increased arms sales in the United States, according to a report.
The Financial Times reported Sunday that the business had picked up since Thursday’s mass shooting.
“Once the public hears the president on the news say we need more gun controls, it tends to drive sales,” the Times quoted Larry Hyatt, owner of a gun shop in North Carolina as saying.
“People think, if I don’t get a gun now, it might be difficult to get one in the future. The store is crowded,” he added.
A gunman, identified as Chris Harper Mercer, opened fire inside a classroom at the college and killed ten people and injured seven others.
The deadly shooting has once again advanced calls for background checks from gun control advocates.
Obama blasted the Republican Congress for refusing to change the country’s gun laws in response to a series of mass shootings across the states.
“There is a gun for roughly every man, woman, and child in America,” said Obama on Friday. “So how can you, with a straight face, make the argument that more guns will make us safer?”
“We know that states with the most gun laws tend to have the fewest gun deaths. So the notion that gun laws don’t work, or just will make it harder for law-abiding citizens and criminals will still get their guns is not borne out by the evidence,” he added.
The similar spike in arms sales was reported in the wake of 2012’s Aurora cinema shootings, the Tucson gun massacre in 2011 and the Virginia Tech shooting in 2007, according to the report.
According to the Pew Research Center, people supporting the right to bear arms were found to be dominantly white men, more likely to be politically conservative, Republican and who have not graduated from university.
The center has reported an overall increase in support for gun “rights”, rather than controls, over the past 20 years.
Every year, more than 30,000 people are shot and killed in the United States. The US averages 87 gun deaths each day as a function of gun violence, with an average of 183 injured, according to the University of Chicago Crime Lab and the Centers for Disease Control.
About 4.5 million firearms are sold annually in the United States at a cost of 2 to 3 billion dollars.
On December 14, 2012, twenty children and six adults were fatally shot by a gunman — who later killed himself — at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in the town of Newtown in the US state of Connecticut.