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Black Friday’s biggest seller? Hint — it uses bullets

Jason Deere of Biloxi, right, shows Noel White of Biloxi a pair of AR-15s at Cook’s Gun Shop in D’Iberville in December.
Jason Deere of Biloxi, right, shows Noel White of Biloxi a pair of AR-15s at Cook’s Gun Shop in D’Iberville in December. jcfitzhugh@sunherald.com

For the second year in a row, guns were at the top of many Black Friday shopping lists.

Al.com reports that 185,713 background checks needed for the legal purchasing of guns were processed by the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) on Friday, Nov. 25, the Friday after Thanksgiving which is commonly known as Black Friday. This means that about 400 more people applied for background checks than on Black Friday in 2015. The system is checked through the FBI.

The increase was even seen locally.

“We had a good Black Friday,” said Mike Creel, manager of Cook’s Gun Shop in D’Iberville.

Spikes in gun sales can sometimes be attributed to threats to national security or personal property. Fortune reports there was a large increase in gun sales before the recent presidential election because many felt that Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton would implement restrictions on the Second Amendment and gun ownership if she was elected.

Creel said that’s not necessarily the case in the South.

“People in the South wait until after the fact because we’re a bit more laid back down here, but people react differently in other parts of the country,” he said. “For the next four years, we won’t hear people say, ‘I have to buy a gun because I won’t be able to buy one’ and the gun sales will just go flat.”

The NICS was implemented by the FBI in 1998 as part of the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act of 1993, which was named after James Brady, who was an assistant to Pres. Ronald Reagan. Brady and Reagan were shot by John Hinckley Jr. during an assassination attempt on Reagan in 1981. Brady was left permanently disabled as a result of the shooting.

Roger Ayscue, a 24-year veteran of the Army and a manager at Hyatt Guns in Charlotte explains the difference in military assault weapons and the rifles available to the public today.

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