As Biden urges stricter gun laws, some think guns aren’t the problem

Published: Jun. 3, 2022 at 7:36 PM EDT
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HUBERT, N.C. (WITN) - Across the country, people were encouraged to wear orange ahead of National Gun Violence Awareness Day.

The topic of stricter regulations on purchasing and selling guns is at the forefront of national conversations right now because of the recent string of mass shootings.

Though reports have surfaced of an increase in gun sales, Dana Fitzpatrick, Flatwoods Outfitters owner of 15 years, says his store hasn’t seen much of a change.

“Think we’re still fighting a backlog of not being able to get product from when the pandemic started two and a half years ago,” Fitzpatrick said. “Product is still hard to get. We really haven’t seen a big increase in people trying to buy product.”

The Onslow County Sheriff’s Office says it saw an uptick in 2020 in firearms permits, but that the rate over the past year has been stable.

“All these different things that legislatures trying to come up with to limit the availability of a firearm isn’t really going to make a difference if they’re still able to get anything and everything,” Fitzpatrick said.

President Biden highlighted the need for better background checks Thursday.

Fitzpatrick feels improvements with mental health resources would better improve background check quality.

“People with mental illness that are out on the streets because there’s no place for them to go and they don’t have the money to get help...” Fitzpatrick said. “And then if they do get some help, it doesn’t get reported so that when we do background checks to ensure that they’re legally able to buy a gun and don’t have these problems, it’s not in the system.”

Fitzpatrick explained that all customers’ information is run through state-authorized background checks before they can leave with a weapon.

He explained that state-authorized concealed carry classes must be completed in the state of North Carolina in order for citizens to carry a handgun on their person.

The Onslow County Sheriff’s Office also says firearms permits must be approved by the sheriff’s office of an applicant’s county in North Carolina.

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