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Entries in Crossroads of the West (1)

Sunday
Jan162011

Shooting Debate Moves to Tucson Gun Show

Image Courtesy - ABC News illustration(TUCSON, Ariz.) -- Flags were flown at half-staff at the Crossroads of the West gun show on Saturday just 13 miles outside Tucson, Ariz., exactly one week after Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was injured in a shooting that left six dead.

"Clearly it's a difficult time, our hearts reach out to those impacted by this tragedy," said Bob Templeton, the event's organizer. "We're all part of this community. Gabrielle Giffords was a friend of gun rights. A gun owner herself and an advocate for Second Amendment rights," said Templeton.

Some in the community found the timing of the show insensitive.

"I think that's rubbing salt in a raw wound," said Paul Helmke, president of the Brady Campaign to Stop Gun Violence. "While we know that [shooter Jared Lee Loughner] apparently did not get his gun from a gun show, a lot of the dangerous people that get guns in this country get them from gun shows."

But that argument doesn't go over so well in gun country.

"I don't agree that restrictions on firearms ownership or guns or ammunition or indeed even high-capacity clips are the answer or the solution -- or even part of the solution," said Templeton.

Gun sales have increased across the country since the shooting. On Monday, dealers in Arizona reported a 60 percent jump in one-day handgun sales. Across the state, the hottest seller has been the Glock 19, the same gun used in the massacre. In Ohio, sales were up 65 percent. Illinois sales rose 38 percent and in New York, 33 percent.

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