Gun Industry Holds Annual Trade Show in Aftermath of AZ Shooting

For Immediate Release

Contact: 

Rob Lamontagne, 202-822-8200 x110, press@vpc.org

Gun Industry Holds Annual Trade Show in Aftermath of AZ Shooting

SHOT Show an Example of a Politically Powerful Industry Desperate to Hide Its Decline

WASHINGTON - Next week, America's
gunmakers will assemble for the SHOT (Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade)
Show, the annual trade show for the firearms industry.  As household gun
ownership has dropped dramatically since the early 1970s and America's
youth turn away from guns, the SHOT Show is proof of the gun industry's embrace
of increased lethality to shore up its fading market and declining sales.

The SHOT Show will bring together
hundreds of vendors - including Glock, a manufacturer of pistols used in
multiple mass shootings, which markets its handguns as "pocket rockets" - and tens of
thousands of attendees, as lawmakers in Congress are expected to introduce
legislation to ban high-capacity ammunition magazines like those used in last
week's mass shooting in Arizona.  The show comes at a time that most of
the major gun manufacturers are experiencing a significant decline in demand
and falling sales.

Josh
Sugarmann,
executive director of the Violence Policy Center,
states, "Most Americans would be shocked
at what the gun industry has become.  For those deeply concerned by the
firepower unleashed in Arizona last week, the SHOT Show proves that America's
increasingly militarized gun industry has embraced heightened firepower and
greater ammunition capacity in its marketing efforts to a shrinking customer
base.
"

DETAILS
FOR NEWS MEDIA

While closed to the general public, the
SHOT Show is open to the news media.  Below is information from the SHOT
Show's sponsor, the gun industry trade association the National Shooting Sports
Foundation. 

 

WHAT:             
SHOT Show

WHERE:
          Sands Expo and
Convention Center in Las Vegas, NV

WHEN:            
Tuesday, January 18 - Friday, January 21, 2011 

 

SHOT SHOW CONTACT
INFORMATION:       

Web:   
            http://www.shotshow.org/en/Media

Email:  
           shot@compusystems.com

Phone: 
            203-426-1320

 

BACKGROUND
FOR NEWS MEDIA

The Violence Policy Center has released studies that demonstrate
the gun industry's reliance on increased lethality, militarization, and
political lobbying in its failed efforts to stem the long-term decline in
American household gun ownership.

DECLINING GUN OWNERSHIP

In light of long-term decreases in
household gun ownership in the United States and the industry's ongoing
concerns that it lacks 'replacement shooters' to take the place of an aging
market, these marketing trends represent a concerted effort to re-sell current
gun owners. 

(See the VPC study "A Shrinking
Minority: The Continuing Decline of Gun Ownership in America," http://www.vpc.org/studies/gunownership.pdf.) 

INCREASED FIREPOWER, HIGH-CAPACITY
HANDGUNS

Small, high-capacity "pocket
rocket" (a term coined by handgun manufacturer Glock) pistols designed for
concealed carry.  Such manufacturers scheduled to be at the SHOT Show
include: Smith & Wesson; Sturm,Ruger; Sig Sauer; Glock; and, Beretta.

(See the VPC study "Pocket Rockets:
The Gun Industry's Sale of Increased Firepower," http://www.vpc.org/studies/pockcont.htm).  

REBRANDING MILITARY-STYLE ASSAULT WEAPONS

The industry is attempting to rebrand
military-style assault weapons as "modern sporting rifles," primarily
AK-47 and AR-15 rifle and pistol models.  Numerous assault rifle models are purchased in quantity on the civilian market in the U.S. and then illegally trafficked into Mexico where they help feed ongoing drug
wars.  Such manufacturers scheduled as exhibitors at the SHOT Show include:  DPMS; Bushmaster; Century International Arms; Rock River Arms, FN (Fabrique National); and, Colt's Manufacturing
Company. 

(See the VPC study, "Indicted: Types
of Firearms and Methods of Gun Trafficking from the United States to Mexico as Revealed in U.S. Court
Documents,"http://www.vpc.org/studies/indicted.pdf.) 

MARKETING ARMOR-PIERCING MILITARY WEAPONS
FOR CIVILIAN USE

The most stark example of the industry's
embrace of military technology is its manufacture and marketing of 50 caliber
sniper rifles (like those used by U.S. troops overseas) that can penetrate
armor-plating from a mile away and can down jetliners on take-off and
landing.  Such manufacturers scheduled to be at the SHOT Show
include:  Barrett; Armalite; and, Bushmaster. 

(See the VPC study "Clear and
Present Danger: National Security Experts Warn About the Danger of Unrestricted
Sales of 50 Caliber Anti-Armor Sniper Rifles to Civilians,"http://www.vpc.org/studies/50danger.pdf.)

###

The Violence Policy Center is a national tax-exempt educational organization working for a safer America through research, investigation, analysis, and advocacy. The VPC provides information to policymakers, journalists, organizations, advocates, and the general public.

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