A new coalition of gun rights and conservative groups have proclaimed January 19, 2013, “Gun Appreciation Day,” and have begun urging Americans nationwide to show their support for gun ownership by turning out en masse at gun stores, ranges, and shows from coast to coast.
Scheduled to send a message to Washington two days before President Obama’s second inauguration, “Gun Appreciation Day” is expected to rival “Chick-fil-A Day” as a public statement of protest against government policies.
Gun Appreciation Day is based on Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day, which was led by conservatives who were reacting to criticism directed at Chick-Fil-A’s president regarding his stance against gay marriage. The call to show support for the fast food restaurant resulted in long lines at Chick-fil-A restaurants across the nation. The groups behind Gun Appreciation Day hope for the same results.
“We felt that there needed to be a swift, strong statement, Chick-fil-A style, to show that we’re not only here but we’re vocal,” Gun Appreciation Day chairman Larry Ward says. “We have never had a president who so callously disregards the Constitution, Congress, the courts and the will of the American people,” he continued.
The initiative is backed by Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, Second Amendment Foundation, Special Operations Speaks, Revolution PAC, Citizens and Country, Social Security Institute, Committee to Draft Judge Andrew Napolitano, Conservative Action Alerts, Women Warriors PAC, Conservative Action Fund, and other groups. The country’s most powerful gun lobby, the National Rifle Association, is not among the organizers.
Gun stores which have already been swamped as a result of the Newtown school shootings and the expected new gun control laws are bracing for the event.
Jason Franks, owner of Basin Firearm Services, said he sold 40,000 guns in the month of December, and already sold 6,000 on Friday alone.
“It’s completely abnormal,” he said. “Is it making us rich? Absolutely not. Is it making me frustrated? Absolutely,” Franks said. “If we can’t fill the store with inventory, what do we sell?”