September 01, 2020
By Mark Chesnut
With record gun sales occurring nearly every month during pandemic-addled, riot-torn 2020, it’s interesting to see what states have had the most gun sales so far during this tumultuous year. Are you really doing your part, or is your state falling woefully short?
In July alone, the FBI conducted more than 3.6 million firearm background checks. That’s the third highest month ever since records began to be kept back in 1998.
Would you believe that Illinois, home of Chicago and the ultra-restrictive Firearms Owner Identification (FOID) card requirements, is the state with the most guns purchased in 2020 so far? Through July, Illinoisans bought nearly 4.6 million guns, with a whopping 714,424 purchased in July alone!
There’s little doubt the daily carnage in Chicago has led to much of the buying spree in the Land of Lincoln. But rioting, looting and civil unrest, along with the “defund the police” movement, have many citizens realizing they are in charge of their own protection.
Kentuckians bought the second most guns in the nation so far in 2020, which might come as a surprise to many readers. The state saw nearly 2.3 million guns sold, with the highest total, 395,188, in June.
With a relatively small population compared to the other four states on the list, it might seem illogical that Kentucky made the list. But when you consider that Louisville is the epicenter of violent rioting and civil unrest, the little state jumping into the second spot isn’t so surprising.
Of course, Texans have always loved their independence and their guns. It’s little surprise to see the Lone Star State on the list, but it is somewhat surprising to see it only in the third slot. Texans bought about 1.4 million guns during the first seven months of the year, with the highest being 227,232 in June.
Florida, the original right-to-carry state, had the fourth most guns purchased at about 1.1 million. June was the biggest month with 210,415 guns purchased.
Finally, California—another state that makes it extremely difficult to purchase firearms—rounded out the Top-5 with about 900,000 guns sold. In the Golden State, March had the highest sales, with 164,497 guns sold.
If you live in one of the other 45 states that didn’t make the Top-5 list, well, let’s just say you need to try a little harder. Maybe by the end of the year you can help push your state further toward the top!
Freelance writer and editor Mark Chesnut is the owner/editorial director at Red Setter Communications LLC. An avid hunter, shooter and political observer, he has been covering Second Amendment issues and politics on a near-daily basis for the past 20 years.