(Olive Branch, MS) Don’t be too surprised if someone in your family wants a gun for Christmas.
This is typically one of the busiest times for gun sellers.
Gun sales hit an all time high on Black Friday and the trend is expected to continue through Christmas.
Jeff Duncan owns The Gun Exchange in Olive Branch, Mississippi, “We’ve sold guns to potential customers from the age of 18 to 88.”
He says gun sales have been brisk since October.
He says hunting season always brings a spike in business and so does Christmas time, “We get a lot of families in here wanting to start their children off shooting 22′s. It’s a good sporting activity.”
Duncan says the 2012 Presidential election also brought an up-tick in sales of bulk ammunition and assault rifles, “Due to potential future gun restrictions that we may or may not face.”
Tom Givens is a firearms instructor with 35-years experience.
He works at RangeMaster in east Memphis.
Givens says in this part of the country guns are still a traditional gift at Christmas time.
But he cautions that giving a gun as a present comes with an awesome responsibility, “It’s always baffled me that people will buy a gun and obtain no training in its use. It’s like buying a car and not knowing how to drive.”
Adam Gresko remembers getting one of his first guns at Christmas and says it was much more than just a gift, “It’s serious business. And it’s something that needs to be handled safely. And something that people need to take very seriously.”
Thomas Tyler also grew up handling firearms and learned early on how to respect them, “The safety part of it we learned early and it was stressed. That was the number one priority with my dad and grandfather and all.”
Instructor Tom Givens says it’s especially important for a first time gun owner to get the proper training.
He suggests even before you give someone their first gun, you should pay for a firearms safety class for the recipient.