Updated 01/17/2013 09:36 AM
Gun control debate drives firearms prices up
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With Wednesday’s call for tighter regulations for firearms, many gun enthusiasts are using this time to stock up on weapons and ammunition.
President Obama on Wednesday announced a package of 23 executive orders aimed at curbing gun violence. The announcement was the latest in a new movement for updated gun regulations following the Sandy Hook school massacre last month.
Gun control is no hypothetical matter for John Woods, a graduate student at the University of Texas. He was on the campus of Virginia Tech University during the 2007 mass shooting.
Six of Wood’s friends, including his girlfriend, were shot and killed.
"For me it is not political, it is personal because of my girlfriend being killed," he said. “I support the Second Amendment. I have been a gun owner myself, but I think we need to do what we can to keep the guns out of the hands of felons or terrorists or people that are dangerously mentally ill."
Keeping firearms out of the hands of individuals deemed unfit to own them was a large part of President Obama’s plan. He urged Congress to make background checks a requirement for all firearms sales, including private sales between individuals.
At the press conference, Obama said that as it stands, as many as 40 percent of gun sales across the nation do not require background checks.
"It is looking at an inanimate object and saying this thing is bad and it has nothing to do with the inanimate object it has to do with bad people," gun rights advocate Donald Dahl said.
Dahl has advocated for gun rights for nearly 30 years. He says the solution should focus on the mental health system as well as encouraging responsible gun ownership.
"People are afraid that they are not going to be able to get the type of rifle they want,” Dahl said. “It shows you that people really do like these kind of weapons."
And fear over looming legislation is causing gun prices to skyrocket, evidenced by the website GunBroker.com, which calls itself the World's Largest Online Auction of Firearms and Accessories.
Prices for the AK-47—perhaps the most recognizable gun in the world—have nearly doubled since the Newtown shootings. YNN looked through 125 recent sales of the rifle on GunBroker and it’s obvious that prices are on the rise.
Before the Sandy Hook shooting, the price of AK-47s averaged close to $700. After the shooting, the price jumped to around $1,150.
Since Jan. 1, prices for AK-47s have averaged more than $1,200.
As for Woods, he says he is not anti-gun, he just wants to make sure they stay in the hands of the right people—a conversation he says he is glad to hear happen.