Gun Shop Owner By Mass Shooting Can Barely Hide Excitement: ‘Always A Rush After A Big Shooting’

At the intersection of cruelty and greed, there’s the Roseburg Gun Shop. After learning of the news that a horrific mass shooting had taken place at nearby community college, owner Candi Kinney scrambled to order more assault rifles. After all, when you see a national tragedy, don’t forget to exploit it for profit.

As she explained to The Guardian‘s Rory Carroll:

“I’ve just ordered some more ARs,” said the owner, Candi Kinney, referring to assault rifles. “There’s always a rush on them after a big shooting. We can’t keep the stuff on the shelves.”

Kinney could barely contain her excitement about her blood-soaked windfall when posing for a picture which Carroll captured on Twitter. If pictures say a thousand words, then this one speaks volumes about America’s toxic gun culture.

Even more disgustingly, Kinney – with a nose for playing to her audience – shamefully indulged the right-wing “Obama is a Muslim coming to take your guns” fantasy, placing a life-size cutout of the president wrapped in a head scarf and captioning it with, “Gun Salesman of the Year.”

Sadly, Kinney wasn’t wrong to assume gun nuts would immediately break out their wallets when they heard that another one of their favorite toys committed an atrocity. Business was good at Roseburg Gun Shop, especially after President Obama, visibly fed up with America’s continued aversion to finding any solutions on how to stop daily massacres, gave a strong speech suggesting the time was now or never to act.

Carroll documented some of Roseburg Gun Shop’s post-shooting customers reasons for coming in. Their responses were invariably tired cliches and debunked NRA talking points. Interviews with almost a dozen residents on Friday yielded unanimity – even in the queue of people lining up to donate blood at a tent set up downtown.

“Obama sucks, he’s stupid,” said Chris Allen, 43, a mill worker. “If criminals want to get guns they’ll get guns.”

Allen had lost a brother to gun violence – a separate tragedy which only steeled his pro-gun resolve.

“Make this a gun-free zone and you paint a target on us,” said one elderly man, a laptop shopper at Staples who declined to give his name. “Criminals will come here because they’ll know no one will damn well shoot back at them.”

No one mentioned that the man who shot nearly 20 people was the legal owner of an arsenal of 13 guns. He brought only half of that arsenal with him to his killing spree and still managed to forever change the lives of an entire community.

On Facebook, Roseburg Gun Shop expressed sympathy for the victims — while hocking their deadly wares, of course. Needless to say, people weren’t amused. Initially, the page had posted a message offering “prayers” to the victims. It was flooded with people calling out the establishment for shamelessly profiting from the tragedy. They pulled it down. So, people began leaving lengthy messages in the page’s comment section instead, pointing out that gun sales aren’t the most important thing to be focusing on while their neighbors focus on burying their loved ones taken by someone who could very well have been a frequent customer.

Roseburg Gun Shop is just a particularly egregious example of a situation that is playing out across the entire country. For some, the love of guns has become so much a part of their identity that learning of a shooting only makes them instinctively defensive. Gun shops are happy to exploit that feeling, and their sales figures show it. While it’s a fact that Obama hasn’t “seized” a single gun since taking office, gun sales — stoked by ugly anti-government fears — have been robust. It’s a terrifying thought to realize that the next mass shooter is probably wandering the aisles of his local gun store this very week, making sure he is sufficiently stockpiled in the off chance that America finally gets serious about stopping gun violence.

Feature image via Rory Carroll/Twitter