Dear Fellow Survivalist;
As I’m sure you’re already aware, there are ammo shortages nationwide. While there can be many reasons for this, the basic one is that there are something like nine million first-time gun owners who have joined our ranks in the last year. The record sales of guns that have been happening are largely driven by a combination of people being trapped in their homes by the COVID-19 pandemic and fear, driven by all the riots and violence that have happened.
Along with that violence, protesters have been pushing the idea of defunding the police. While not a popular idea amongst the general citizenry and even less so amongst people in crime infested areas, it has caught on with leftist politicians, some of whom have managed to drastically reduce the budgets of their city’s police force.
This has left many people frightened, especially those who are not receiving police protection from the riots and violence that is still rocking our country today. Since they can’t count on the police protecting them and their homes, some nine million of those people have decided that it’s time to arm themselves; even Democrats who are normally opposed to law-abiding citizens owning firearms are changing their tune, as they go to the gun store for themselves.
With all this gun buying, it’s really no wonder that there are ammo shortages. When people buy guns, they want ammo to go along with their new possessions. The smarter amongst them want an opportunity to practice, so that they know what they’re doing, if they ever have to use their gun. Those people buy more ammo than others, as they need to throw a lot of lead downrange to get ready.
According to leaders in the ammunition industry, orders were up about 30% before the current wave of purchases happened. But now, they’re up something like 80%, much more than manufacturers can produce. Some manufacturers are saying that they’ve got two years of backorders lined up, right now.
And it’s not like they can just up production. Adding production capability is an expensive undertaking, one that manufacturers aren’t willing to undertake until they have some confidence that the market won’t fall out from under them. Investing millions of dollars on new production capability for expected sales that don’t materialize is a sure recipe for disaster. Companies have gone bankrupt making those sorts of investments.
The street price of ammo has gotten ridiculous. 9mm pistol ammo, one of the most popular calibers out there, has gone from 22 cents a round to about a buck a round. That’s not all due to market forces either; the materials that ammo manufacturers use have gone up considerably as well. copper, which is used for jacketing bullets has gone from $2.45 to $4.50 in one year.
As it sits right now, we can expect ammo shortages for some calibers to last at least two more years. For those of us who like to shoot regularly, that’s a big problem, forcing us to dip into our ammo stockpile or look for other options. But just what other options are there?
One option is to reload your own. But from what I understand, there’s a general shortage of reloading supplies, all across the board. So unless you have your own stockpile of supplies, you might have to do some serious hunting to find what you need. Bullets can be cast at home; but you’ve got to buy the gunpowder and primers.
Another option is to shoot some other caliber, if you have it available to you. I’ve got a lot of .22 and .380 ammunition on hand; so I can shoot that for a while. It’s not the same as shooting my 9mm or my .45, but it at least gives me some practice. I just might be forced to buy myself another .380 pistol, as my little pocket pistol really isn’t like shooting something larger.
Finally, there’s dry fire practice. While dry fire isn’t anywhere near as exciting as punching holes in targets; it is still effective practice. I’ve done a lot to improve my own shooting, over the years, by making effective use of dry fire. Since I live in a small town now, and it’s a bit of a drive to the range, I have plenty of motivation to keep up my dry fire practice, over and above the general ammo shortage.
Don’t despair. The good news is that many of those first time gun owners are registered Democrats. Having now joined the ranks of us gun owners, they’re not going to be pushing their politicians to take away our gun rights. If anything, they’ll be doing the opposite, helping to reduce the political pressure from the anti-gun lobby and increasing the pressure for expanding our rights. I’d definitely call that good news.
So do your dry fire, go to the range when you can, and be sure to keep your powder dry and your survival gear close at hand.