Gun Controllers Peddle Declining Ownership Myth Amid Massive Growth in Firearms Manufacturers

myths

While wishful gun control supporters keep peddling the fiction that gun ownership is declining, the firearms industry is growing at an explosive pace in order to meet a growing demand. Earlier this week, Arek Sarkissian of the Naples Daily News wrote a piece highlighting the aggressive growth in licensed gun manufacturers. As the content of the article made clear, interest in firearms is booming and the firearms industry is a vibrant sector of the U.S. economy.

As Sarkissian pointed out, at the outset of Barack Obama’s presidency in 2009, ATF had issued 3,040 active Type 07 Federal Firearms Licenses to manufacture firearms. The most recent ATF data available places the current number of Type 7 FFLs at 10,958. This is a more than 250 percent increase in the number of licensed firearms manufacturers over the past eight years.

Writing for a Florida news outlet, Sarkissian noted that the Sunshine State trails only Texas in number of gun manufacturers. From 2009 to August 2016, the number of Florida gun manufacturers has grown from 155 to 701, while Texas has gone from 219 to 1,146.

However, it’s not only traditionally pro-gun states that have experienced significant growth in firearms manufacturing in recent years. In January 2012, Massachusetts had 97 Type 07 FFLs, it now has 162. Over the same time period, California more than doubled from 229 manufacturers to 520, and Illinois grew from 124 to 187. Despite the best efforts of New York’s politicians, the state went from having 106 manufacturers to 187. Even licensed manufacturers in the anti-gun stronghold of New Jersey nearly doubled from 14 to 27.

Type 07 Firearms Manufacturer FFLs by State, January 2012 and August 2016

State Jan-2012 Aug-2016
 Ala. 77 182
Alaska 42 60
 Ariz. 327 610
 Ark. 101 202
 Calif. 229 520
 Colo. 151 335
Conn. 114 156
 Del. 3 6
 Fla. 314 701
 Ga. 159 320
Hawaii 5 5
Idaho 146 218
 Ill. 124 187
 Ind. 111 200
Iowa 53 117
 Kan. 78 148
 Ky. 81 145
 La. 71 155
Maine 48 88
 Md. 75 127
 Mass. 97 162
Mich. 120 248
Minn. 136 188
Miss. 39 116
Mo. 184 299
Mont. 83 150
Neb. 35 71
Nev. 96 179
N.H. 66 139
N.J. 14 27
N.M. 75 143
N.Y. 106 187
N.C. 206 385
N.D. 4 11
Ohio 220 438
Okla. 167 302
Ore. 196 188
Pa. 226 344
R.I. 9 16
S.C. 88 170
S.D. 42 48
Tenn. 139 242
Texas 556 1146
Utah 130 273
Vt. 29 58
Va. 154 281
Wash. 154 242
W.Va. 38 81
Wis. 124 249
Wyo. 44 87

“Report of Active Firearms Licenses – License Type by State Statistics,” Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, January, 2012 and August 2016,

Along with month after month of record-setting numbers of background checks conducted by the FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System, the incredible growth in firearms manufacturing puts an obvious damper on gun control advocates’ efforts to push their narrative of declining gun ownership. Contrary to these anti-gunners’ deepest desires, Americans’ interest in firearms shows no sign of abating.