Gun sales up in Austin's LGBT community
Since the Orlando nightclub massacre gun sales are up, especially in the LGBTQ community. The June 12th shooting rampage is having a significant impact that is lasting longer than some expected.
Nightclubs, like Pulse, have always been considered a gay refuge. But now the safe space is being looked at as a danger zone.
"Everybody's going to open their eyes up," said Jayleeah McCoy.
Jayleeah is a member of the LGBTQ community. The hair stylist was afraid of guns, but now she owns one. "The class showed me how to protect myself and use a firearm," said Jayleeah.
Concerns about safety have gun sales surging. At Central Texas Gun Works the impact of the Orlando shooting was immediate. "We actually saw traffic on our website double," said Michael Cargill, owner of the south Austin gun store.
Cargill says in addition to the growing demand for guns there's also growing support to get rid of no gun zones. "The state of Georgia has a carry everywhere law and they actually allow people to carry inside of bars," said Cargill.
In Texas, only one person can carry a gun inside a bar or club and that has to be the club owner or a manager. But advocates think that could change in the next legislative session. For now the LGBT community just wants to be better prepared to deal with violence wherever people confront it.
"I'm going to notify a lot of my friends to get protection," said Jayleeah.
Austin in also in the process of getting a local chapter of the Pink Pistols. The groups provides a friendly atmosphere for people in the LGBTQ community who have an interest in guns and self-defense.