It seems that 2020 is heating up in the gun world as last month we just witnessed the highest number of NICS checks in the FBI’s history for the month of May. Throughout 2020, federal background checks have continued to increase due to various circumstances across the nation. However, May 2020 in particular seems to have seen its biggest month ever since the establishment of the system 20 years ago.
May 2020 Destroys NICS Records of Any Year since Program Introduction
According to a National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) study, May 2020 saw a staggering 3,066,740 checks conducted through the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS). While this is a big number, the NSSF removed the checks that were gun permit checks for states that require those procedures. With the permit checks removed, the total number of firearm-related checks is revealed to be at 1,595,790.
May 2020 Destroys NICS Records of Any Year since Program Introduction Source: NSSF
The 3 million figure for the month reflects a 32.1% jump from the unadjusted FBI NICS figure of 2,320,918 in May 2019 nearly a million less than this year. In line with this year, the paired down numbers for 2019 come out to 910,910 total checks while exempting permit checks. This translates to a 684,880 increase in checks for the month of May alone.
Photo Credit: Linda Moon
According to NSSF Director of Public Affairs Mark Oliva, “May’s adjusted NICS background check figures are the highest on record for any May since record-keeping began on point-of-sale instant background checks, Americans are being confronted with decisions regarding their personal safety and are voting with their wallets on their right to keep and bear arms.”
Director Oliva also made a point to mention that the last survey of firearm retailers reflected that 40% of gun buyers recently are actually first time buyers. If you happen to be one of these people be sure to check out our article on what to do if you’re a new gun owner. Of that 40% of new gun owners, another 40% are women of which a vast majority are buying handguns for personal protection.
Photo Credit: B Brown
As we continue to go through this crazy year, it will be interesting to see exactly what sparks people’s primal instinct to seek out the best means of self-defense in uncertain times. If any of you have recently purchased a firearm for any reason let us know down in the comments what drove you do that. In any case, stay safe out there people!