Darren Burger, co-owner of the gun shop Locked and Loaded in Choctaw, said he believes a “fear of legislation” is driving the current upward trends in gun sales and applications handgun licenses.
Burger said even though the licenses aren't being specifically targeted by the Obama administration — which is focusing more on background checks and limiting what kinds of ammunition and weapons are available to the public — people typically become nervous when the president starts to focus on gun control.
“There is just a lot of uncertainty, especially around elections,” Burger said. “People don't know what's coming, so it's that fear of the unknown.
“People are in a rush to get something people are telling them they can't have … even if they haven't told them anything yet.”
People attending a recent government-mandated handgun license class at H&H Shooting Sports Complex in Oklahoma City said they are nervous about Obama's stance on guns but claimed they had been planning to get the license anyway.
Latonia McDaniel, who took a firearms safety and familiarization course last month at H&H, said she had long been planning to get her handgun license for personal protection.
“I want to be able to protect myself, as a woman, and my kids,” McDaniel said. “Plus, I grew up around guns, and I know how to use them. It's the next step.”
McDaniel said the recent talk of increased gun control may have led to her taking the class, although it wasn't the only reason.
“It was a bit of a factor,” she said. “But it was definitely something I've thought about for some time.”