You’ve heard the conspiracies, you’ve seen the memes. Obama is coming for your guns, in black helicopters with Agenda 21 U.N. Soldiers to confiscate your 2nd amendment. Since we can’t prove that, Obama is buying all the ammo.
Obama is doing neither. Government agencies buying ammunition is nothing new. The DHS 100 million round purchase, hailed by conservatives as an Obama plot to arm the government for the impending police state, was for common and necessary consumption due to training and expansion. The army uses 350 rounds per soldier for training per year. That math alone is an enormous amount of ammunition.
Here’s the thing. Ammunition manufacturers are aware of these purchases. They are prepared for them. The ammunition shortage in America has absolutely nothing to do with the government buying ammunition, it has nothing to do with Obama wanting to disarm America.
It has everything to do with the paranoia of the American ammosexual.
Since 2009 gun sales have skyrocketed. The enormous amount of guns people have purchased, most being repeat buyers, require an enormous amount of ammunition. Manufacturers are also aware of that little tidbit of fact, and have increased production to keep up.
Doug Raaf, owner of Guncrafters Firearms in Salem, Oregon, recently released a video explaining why paranoia, not the government, is causing the ammo shortage. Raaf has been in business for more than 30 years and knows his trade well:
We see it happen every year when there’s a political election. People think there’s gonna be some gun registration coming through so they stock up. And so they’ll buy one box to shoot and 5 boxes to put away. The manufacturers are continuing to make ammo, they haven’t stopped, it’s just that people are buying more ammo than they can produce. We’re seeing it now worse than I’ve ever seen it in my 30 years here.
What conservatives have accomplished is a self-fulfilling prophecy wherein they can claim an ammo shortage and blame it on gun control. The paranoid and uninformed base then buys up all the ammo, leading to a perpetual shortage and a boatload of ‘He’s comin’ fer yer gunz’ memes and posts on social media.
In the end the manufacturers, the NRA, and the right-wing politicians who depend on their money for campaign financing get the win. Brilliant.