Gun Owners Afraid of Losing Rights

Authorities say Adam Lanza killed 26 people at Sandy Hook Elementary School, his mother and himself on Friday.

In the midst of an outcry over stricter gun control laws, experts in Tampa Bay say gun owners are afraid of losing their ability to purchase guns after big box retailers like Wal-Mart and Dick's Sporting Goods announced changes in their stocking preferences following Friday's shooting in Newtown, Conn.

"The requests I'm getting are that they're scared they'll lose their rights," said Shawn Penwell, general manager of Shooting Sports, 7811 N. Dale Mabry Highway in Tampa.

While handguns are the store's "dominant seller," Penwell said the AR-15 - a semi-automatic rifle authorities say the shooter used in Newtown - has become more popular with customers after Wal-Mart removed the gun from its online listings this week.

"There's an uptick in AR-15 rifles, because the concern there is, they won't be able to purchase them."

Above all, Penwell said gun owners want to use their weapons without causing anyone harm, and want to be responsible with the equipment.

"They want to be safe with it and learn how to defend themselves," he said. "I won't hand somebody a rifle and say it's a good home defense weapon."

What do you think about the gun control issue? Are you a gun owner? Tell us in the comments.

The Costume Closet December 20, 2012 at 10:04 PM
I am not a gun owner, but because I dont own, does not mean someone else can't. Or if someone feels violence is caused by guns, it should not mean no one can carry a gun. We do have an constitutional right to bear arms. I think everyone is really missing the point. We should use this opportunity to get better mental health care! Someone does not just go buy a gun and shoot up a school. Issues lead to that. We fight for better health care, but somehow leave out mental health issues. Rally for proper mental health care, not gun control! It's interesting that we give driver's ed to our youth and yet more teens cause car accidents, more people are killed by cars or alcohol. The focus can be on the type of guns to be sold to who in some way, but please take a look further and see that we are neglecting a population that could potentially be dangerous if not treated properly.


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