OGDEN — Antique firearms lined tables, and concerns over infringement of Second Amendment rights were on the minds of many sellers and buyers at Saturday’s Utah Gun Collectors Association show at the Weber County Fairgrounds.
Roy resident Dave Baker walked around an exhibit hall with a “for sale” sign attached to the end of the barrel of his Ruger Mini-14 rifle. He said President Barack Obama’s gun-control efforts are making firearms a hot commodity.
“When you’ve got Democrats taking over our government, sales go up,” he said. “Democrats are the best gun salesmen.”
The gun show, which ends today, attracted hundreds of spectators and 65 vendors who displayed items on 175 tables, said Linda Lasseter Evans, UGCA board member.
Weaponry from the Revolutionary War, the Old West, World War II and other eras, along with knives, outdoor gear, books and assorted memorabilia, were on display.
Evans said she was pleased with Saturday’s attendance.
Many spectators were drawn to the show because they are concerned about Obama’s effort to ramp up gun-control legislation in the wake of last month’s deadly shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., Evans said.
“They worry about Obama overstepping his authority,” she said, adding tougher gun laws aren’t the solution to school violence. “If you outlaw guns, they (those who want to harm students) will bring something else in.”
Steve Sorensen, who was dressed as a Continental soldier and displayed several Revolutionary War-era replica weapons, uniforms and artifacts, also expressed concern that ideals espoused by the nation’s Founding Fathers are being trampled.
“There is less understanding and commitment to principles,” he said.
A Standard-Examiner reporter approached several people who were examining guns and other items for sale, but they declined to talk or give their names.
That’s understandable, Evans said.
Ever since the Journal-News, a newspaper based in suburban New York, published an interactive map on its website last month showing the names and addresses of those holding gun permits in two counties, gun owners nationwide have been reluctant to talk to reporters, Evans said.
“That was irresponsible journalism,” she added.