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Coronavirus Threat Boosts Sales At Gun Stores, Deemed 'Essential' In Texas

Image by Steve Buissinne from Pixabay https://bit.ly/2JSrfdj

Only "essential" businesses are allowed to remain open under Gov. Abbott's statewide shelter-in-place order to limit the spread of coronavirus. In Texas, that includes gun stores.

Fear and uncertainty about the pandemic have prompted a boom in gun and ammunition sales across the country, including in Texas and San Antonio.

According to Attorney General Ken Paxton, cities and counties can't prohibit the sale of firearms or ammunition during an emergency declaration. 

Do Second Amendment rights extend to firearm purchases amid a public health crisis? How are other states handling this? Have there been legal challenges? 

Why is there a run on firearms in times of turmoil? Could a spike in gun sales pose an additional public health concern? What can be done to prevent an increase in gun-related incidents?


  • Hannah Shearer, litigation director for the Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence
  • Dan Levin, reporter for the New York Times

"The Source" is a live call-in program airing Mondays through Thursdays from 12-1 p.m. Leave a message before the program at (210) 615-8982. During the live show, call  833-877-8255, email thesource@tpr.org  or tweet @TPRSource.

*This interview was recorded on Thursday, April 9.

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Kim Johnson is the producer for Texas Public Radio’s live, call-in show The Source. She is a Trinity University alum with bachelor’s degrees in Communication and Spanish, and a Master of Arts Degree from the School of Journalism at the University of Texas at Austin.