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Cashing in on the New Millennium

How the Firearms Industry Exploits Y2K Fears to Sell More Guns

Section Two: Quotes From Selected Consumer Gun Magazines

"Coping With The Upcoming Computer Collapse," Robert Hausman, Guns & Ammo, February 1999, pp. 30-31

Being forewarned as well as forearmed will help you survive the Y2Kaos.

Portable generators are being purchased for use if the electric lights go out. And they have begun to buy guns and a goodly supply of ammo, in case they find themselves having to protect their loved ones, as well as their stored food supplies, from the inevitable bands of rioters, plunderers, looters and common criminals who may run roughshod through America's cities when systems begin to fail next January 1.

For those thinking that if things get bad next year, a firearm can always be purchased at their local dealers�think again! Remember, the new National Instant Criminal Background Check System by which all firearms sales through licensed dealers must be processed is in effect. When performing an "instant" background check, the NICS is heavily computer-dependent in retrieving and documenting the backgrounds of gun buyers. If the government's computers are unable to reliably function beginning January 1, 2000, it could cause an "instant" halt to all firearms sales nationwide. Now that you are forewarned, there is no excuse not to be forearmed.

"Defying Y2K: Prepare Now So You Won't Have to Worry Later," Scott Stoddard, American Survival Guide, April 1999, p. 64

Provide your family with self defense tools. Hopefully they will be useful for both protection and hunting purposes. Teach your family how to use them safely and under what circumstances they should pull the trigger.

"Survive Y2K: Guns and Gear You Need," Jerry Ahern, Gun World, August 1999, pp. 40, 43

Age and health permitting, each person, for his or her own sake and for the welfare of the family unit, needs to be reasonably self-sufficient. As appropriate, this includes being armed with familiar firearms that can be operated efficiently and successfully as required.

Every appropriate member of the family should have a powerful sidearm.

Assuming we are arming a family of four, if the kids are sufficiently mature and properly trained, four handguns should be available.

"Y2 Care About Y2K," James Cord, American Guardian, August 1999, pp. 45, 57-58

Imagine the scope of the problem should computerized equipment fail. Your microwave would be just a fancy breadbox without a microchip. Your car would not start and your traffic lights, telephones and TVs would not function. There would be no water, electricity, 911 service or airplanes or subways because inside these chip-driven systems is a small time bomb.

[T]he extent of Y2K's damage cannot be predicted. Any economic ripple effects could cause a scarcity of goods and medical supplies. There is potential for hoarding, looting and rioting.

Additionally, the end of the millennium is meaningful to certain political and religious entities. It is also an opportune time to gain worldwide attention to a cause through an act of terrorism, especially with several million tourists crammed into the world's metropolises for millennium parties.

For instance, you may encounter looters trying to take advantage of a stressful situation or others who are not as prepared as you are, or there could be assaults by terrorist organizations. With regard to your family's safety, the subject of firearms must be addressed.

As with food and other supplies, stock enough ammunition to last for a few weeks of severe social unrest. How much that may be is a more difficult call to make. Unlike food, usage rates depend on a lot of factors�the type of firearm(s) you have and the rate at which you are likely to use the ammunition, the number of people in your household who may be armed, and the size and vulnerability of the property you could be protecting.

"Facing Y2K With a Colt Python," Leroy Thompson, Handguns, September 1999, pp. 51, 53

When I started thinking about a revolver for the Y2K scenario, I quickly decided that a four-inch-barreled, stainless steel .357 Magnum would be my first choice. The four-inch barrel is short enough for concealment or easy carry, yet it's long enough to allow good accuracy and the ability to reach out to 50 yards or more.

It's not impossible in an attempt to gain your money, food, transportation or weapons that an attacker might take a family member hostage. Despite the typical film or television response, putting down one's weapon is not the answer. Instead, each family member should be briefed on a code word that means, "Drop so I can take a head shot." However, one has to be utterly confident of the weapon to take a shot inches from the head of a loved one, even to save his or her life.

One might also need to quickly stop a dog or dogs who through starvation revert to wild beasts. Dogs take a lot of killing, so a powerful round and good shot placement will be necessary should this distasteful task arise.

"Smith & Wesson's Model 10 Revolver: A Good Choice as a Y2K Handgun," Walt Rauch, Handguns, September 1999, p. 55

If there is a Y2K problem, you'll need�among other things�a gun. If Y2K doesn't happen, you'll still have gained a measure of self-protection.

The best legal choice for self-defense in this vision of chaos is a rifle, of course, for a handgun or shotgun is a very short-range tool with which to fight. The problem is that while waiting for the apocalypse, if you live a relatively normal existence, you can't run around carrying a rifle with you all the time.

The underbelly of society looks for and exploits natural disasters as well as social disturbances, such as an unpopular court ruling.

"Top Ten: Y2K Survival Kit," Cameron Hopkins, American Handgunner, September-October 1999, p. 34

Rule One: Have a Gun

If the First Rule of Gunfighting is to have a gun, then the second surely must be: never bring a handgun to a rifle fight.

Pay your money, take your choice. The Colt (or clone) AR-15 is still available in both pre- and post-ban configurations�yes, even in California.

If you like the 7.62mm NATO round�and who doesn't?�for its ability to penetrate hard cover, we recommend either the classic FN-FAL, available in pre-ban form, or a Springfield Armory M1A, legal everywhere.

Don't forget "ammunition feeding devices." The ne plus ultra of magazines for the AR is the C-Mag which holds 100 rounds (available from CFI at 817-268-1155). A device that holds two 30 rounders together is the Mag-Cinch (see photo) a $15 widget that really works (available from Buffer Technologies at 573-634-8529).

"B4Y2K," Barrett Tillman, American Handgunner, September/October 1999, pp. 33-34

In other words, if you expect a gunfight, have a gun.

Secondly, stock up on common calibers of ammo: .223, .308, .45 and 9mm for starters. Rimfire guns and ammunition especially can be excellent trading stock because they're a good investment: buy low, sell high.

But since the Have Nots won't hesitate to break in and take from the Haves, plan on close contact. And plan on being outnumbered. High capacity rifles, pistols and shotguns are obvious choices.

Go to Section Three: Quotes From Selected Industry Magazines

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The Violence Policy Center is a national non-profit educational foundation that conducts research on violence in America and works to develop violence-reduction policies and proposals. The Center examines the role of firearms in America, conducts research on firearms violence, and explores new ways to decrease firearm-related death and injury.

All contents � 1999 Violence Policy Center