SHOT Show opens in Las Vegas as Obama era closes in Washington, D.C.

The annual SHOT Show in Las Vegas was off to a noisy start with Media day at the range.

The annual SHOT Show in Las Vegas was off to a noisy start with Media day at the range.
The annual SHOT Show in Las Vegas was off to a noisy start with Media day at the range.

Tuesday’s opener of the 2017 Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade (SHOT) Show in Las Vegas has no small significance as it comes just a few days before President Barack Obama bows out after revealing over the past weekend once again that his “biggest disappointment” as president was a failure to pass gun control legislation.

Obama calls it “gun safety,” which is a slogan right out of the gun prohibition lobby, which has learned to avoid the term “gun control” because it is politically toxic. The agenda has been sanitized with such terms as “gun responsibility” or “gun reform.” But it’s still the same thing.

This week, some 60,000-plus firearms industry professionals will attend the SHOT Show. Activities kicked off Monday with the annual media day at the range. Tuesday evening will see a report on the state of the industry from Steve Sanetti, president of the National Shooting Sports Foundation, at the annual industry banquet.

The event includes remarks by Mike Rowe, who fended off criticism for his appearance in a no-nonsense message to one critic.

Everything leads up to Friday, which is likely to see a celebratory mood in the Sands Convention Center as Donald Trump is sworn in and the Obama administration goes away. There appears to be much relief that Hillary Clinton will not be in the White House, appointing federal judges and Supreme Court justices.

The SHOT Show has become the largest firearms industry event in the world. People from around the globe gather for this annual premier of new guns and gear. There is no small amount of irony in the fact that the firearms industry has thrived while Obama has been in office.

On Monday, some firearms journalists chatted about assertions that gun ownership is actually declining. One man noted that surveys on this subject are deceptive at best. After all, he explained, he’s got several firearms including more than a dozen semiautomatic modern sporting rifles — the so-called “assault weapons” that anti-gunners want banned — and he suggested that if someone were to ask him about gun ownership, he’d deny having a single gun in the house. He is not alone, apparently.

A lot of people have been buying firearms, and that includes Americans who have never before owned gun. Demand for training is up, and so are concealed carry licenses. But they’re reluctant to discuss it. Evidently, many if not most of these new gun owners think it is nobody’s business.

Trump could nominate more than a hundred federal judges, along with one or more Supreme Court justices during his time in office.

A Republican-led Congress will consider genuine “gun reform” legislation including national concealed carry reciprocity and the proposed Hearing Protection Act to expand ownership of noise suppressors.

The horizon is looking better for gun owners, despite some efforts by anti-gunners at the state level.

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