ABC news reports some statistics that are so shocking that I’m wondering if America can even be described as a Democracy any more. Isn’t it time we just admitted that Corporations run America: that is is, in effect, a Corporat-ocracy?
As ABC news says:
There are more than 129,817 federally licensed firearms dealers in the United States, according to the latest Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives numbers (as of Aug. 1).
Of those, 51,438 are retail gun stores, 7,356 are pawn shops and 61,562 are collectors, with the balance of the licenses belonging mostly to manufacturers and importers of firearms and destructive devices. For comparison, here are some numbers of other ubiquitous elements of American life:
• Gas Stations in the U.S. (2011): 143,839 (source TD LINX/Nielsen via National Associations of Convenience Stores, Association for Convenience for Convenience and Fuel Retailing)
• Grocery Stores in the U.S. (2011) 36,569 (source: Food Marketing Institute)
• McDonald’s restaurants in the U.S. (2011): 14,098 (Source: McDonald’s Corporation Annual Report 2011)
Yes, there are more stores selling guns than groceries.
But unlike burgers, gas and groceries, firearms are not a perishable or consumable product. They don’t go away. A rifle used in the 2009 Holocaust Museum shooting was nearly 100 years old, but was still an effective murder weapon.