July 1st was a bright, beautiful day for gun owners and shooting sports enthusiasts across the country. 

Numerous pro-gun legislative initiatives went into effect, expanding the rights and privileges of law-abiding citizens seeking to exercise their 2nd Amendment rights, and to participate in their favorite shooting sports. 

Here are four key highlights: 

  1. My personal favorite legislative victory occurred in West Virginia: All small arms and ammunition sales in WV will be SALES TAX FREE. This is an incredible and unprecedented achievement for gun owners, gun and ammo manufacturers and, of course, the state of WV. The state will undoubtedly experience a giant surge in business as firearm enthusiasts from neighboring jurisdictions pay a visit to shop for guns and ammo. I’m already planning a day trip. 
  2. Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signed into law H.B. 259, the Church Carry bill, allowing Floridians to carry concealed firearms into churches and other places of worship. 
  3. Iowa now has constitutional carry, allowing Hawkeye State citizens to both purchase and carry a handgun without first obtaining a permit. 
  4. Kansas lowered the required age for obtaining a concealed carry permit from 21 to 18 AND lowered the CCL application fee from $132.50 to $112.  

Other newsworthy July 1st developments include California Attorney General Rob Bonta announcing that handgun sales in California increased 65.5% in 2020 — from 414,705 in 2019 to 686,435 in 2020. Sales on long guns also increased by 45.9%, going from 329,311 in 2019 to 480,401 in 2020.  

Gun sales across the nation skyrocketed in 2020 — and it’s especially satisfying to me and other gun rights advocates to learn this trend also occurred in traditionally blue, anti-gun, pro-gun control states like California. 

Significantly, Small Arms Analytics & Forecasting (SAAF) released data showing that background checks for firearm purchases in June totaled roughly 1.4 million. Compared to June of 2020, that’s a 42% decline — but is still the second highest number on record for that 30-day period. Gun sales for 2021 total around 10.6 million thus far, compared to 11.1 million this time last year. 

While gun sales have slightly declined compared to last year, when the Covid pandemic and its associated fear helped spur sales, it’s crystal-clear that guns and gun rights remain a top priority for Americans from coast to coast, in red states and blue. 

As the Biden Administration proposes countless gun control measures in Washington, states are wisely taking it upon themselves to preserve, protect and defend the rights and privileges of America’s gun owners. 

That’s a beautiful thing. 

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