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Memberships in Black gun clubs on the rise

New York's Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club founder Damon Finch teaches a safety class at a shooting range in Monroe, New York, July 30, 2020. The insecurity brought by the COVID-19 lockdowns combined with anger following the police killing of George Floyd has lead to a higher levels of anxiety, fear and gun ownership, especially among African Americans. 

REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

New York's Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club founder Damon Finch teaches a safety class at a shooting range in Monroe, New York, July 30, 2020. The insecurity brought by the COVID-19 lockdowns combined with anger following the police killing of George...more

New York's Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club founder Damon Finch teaches a safety class at a shooting range in Monroe, New York, July 30, 2020. The insecurity brought by the COVID-19 lockdowns combined with anger following the police killing of George Floyd has lead to a higher levels of anxiety, fear and gun ownership, especially among African Americans. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
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Members of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practice at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. According to the National African American Gun Association (NAAGA), gun ownership among Black people is growing. Founded in Atlanta in 2015, NAAGA started with 30 members. The organization now has 75 active chapters and more than 30,000 members, according to its website. NAAGA's founder Philip Smith said more than 2,000 people joined the group in the 36 hours after the death of George Floyd.

REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

Members of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practice at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. According to the National African American Gun Association (NAAGA), gun ownership among Black people is growing. Founded in Atlanta in 2015, NAAGA started...more

Members of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practice at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. According to the National African American Gun Association (NAAGA), gun ownership among Black people is growing. Founded in Atlanta in 2015, NAAGA started with 30 members. The organization now has 75 active chapters and more than 30,000 members, according to its website. NAAGA's founder Philip Smith said more than 2,000 people joined the group in the 36 hours after the death of George Floyd. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
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Shell cases are seen on the floor as a member of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practices at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. Membership also has grown in New York's Hudson Valley. Nubian Gun Club founder Damon Finch said the group started earlier this year with "a couple of people getting together." "Our membership almost every night is doubling, tripling. It's just amazing how many people are now joining a group," said Finch, a firearms instructor.

REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

Shell cases are seen on the floor as a member of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practices at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. Membership also has grown in New York's Hudson Valley. Nubian Gun Club founder Damon Finch said the group started...more

Shell cases are seen on the floor as a member of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practices at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. Membership also has grown in New York's Hudson Valley. Nubian Gun Club founder Damon Finch said the group started earlier this year with "a couple of people getting together." "Our membership almost every night is doubling, tripling. It's just amazing how many people are now joining a group," said Finch, a firearms instructor. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
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Members of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practice at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. "When asking people why did you join a club, the common denominator that we're hearing is obviously safety, improve the ability to shoot, but also with what's going on in the world, they just want to at least have a game plan for them to protect their families," said Finch.

REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

Members of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practice at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. "When asking people why did you join a club, the common denominator that we're hearing is obviously safety, improve the ability to shoot, but also with...more

Members of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practice at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. "When asking people why did you join a club, the common denominator that we're hearing is obviously safety, improve the ability to shoot, but also with what's going on in the world, they just want to at least have a game plan for them to protect their families," said Finch. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
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Members of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practice at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. African Americans are not the only ones considering gun ownership. Gun sales in June were the highest on record with 3.9 million firearms sold, according to calculations from the Brookings Institution. And gun retailers report about 40% of purchases coming from first-time buyers, according to the trade group the National Shooting Sports Foundation.

REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

Members of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practice at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. African Americans are not the only ones considering gun ownership. Gun sales in June were the highest on record with 3.9 million firearms sold, according...more

Members of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practice at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. African Americans are not the only ones considering gun ownership. Gun sales in June were the highest on record with 3.9 million firearms sold, according to calculations from the Brookings Institution. And gun retailers report about 40% of purchases coming from first-time buyers, according to the trade group the National Shooting Sports Foundation. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
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Members of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practice at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. According to FBI statistics, the first spike in gun sales came in March after President Trump declared a national COVID-19 emergency. The week of March 16 saw the highest ever number of background checks for people wanting to purchase a firearm since the government began compiling statistics in 1998. The second highest week for background checks started June 1, following the death of George Floyd.

REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

Members of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practice at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. According to FBI statistics, the first spike in gun sales came in March after President Trump declared a national COVID-19 emergency. The week of March 16...more

Members of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practice at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. According to FBI statistics, the first spike in gun sales came in March after President Trump declared a national COVID-19 emergency. The week of March 16 saw the highest ever number of background checks for people wanting to purchase a firearm since the government began compiling statistics in 1998. The second highest week for background checks started June 1, following the death of George Floyd. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
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Members of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practice at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. "There's a lot of racial tension. There's a lot of divide in almost every arena that you can think of," said Margaret Powell, 61, of El Dorado, Arkansas, days before she was due to take her first gun safety class. "At 61 years, I've not needed it, not ever thought of it. I would say 'Get the guns away. no, no no'. But now my views have changed because I guess the world is changing right before our eyes."

REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

Members of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practice at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. "There's a lot of racial tension. There's a lot of divide in almost every arena that you can think of," said Margaret Powell, 61, of El Dorado, Arkansas,...more

Members of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practice at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. "There's a lot of racial tension. There's a lot of divide in almost every arena that you can think of," said Margaret Powell, 61, of El Dorado, Arkansas, days before she was due to take her first gun safety class. "At 61 years, I've not needed it, not ever thought of it. I would say 'Get the guns away. no, no no'. But now my views have changed because I guess the world is changing right before our eyes." REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
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New York's Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club founder Damon Finch teaches a safety class at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. Such tensions have galvanized groups such as Black Guns Matter which advocated for African American gun ownership in Minneapolis during recent protests, and the newly formed black militia, the Not F---ing Around Coalition which made its first public appearance in May to protest the shooting death of Ahmaud Arbery, a black jogger shot by two white men in Georgia. NFAC recently rallied in Louisville, Kentucky, where Breonna Taylor was shot and killed by police officers who burst into her apartment.

REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

New York's Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club founder Damon Finch teaches a safety class at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. Such tensions have galvanized groups such as Black Guns Matter which advocated for African American gun ownership in...more

New York's Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club founder Damon Finch teaches a safety class at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. Such tensions have galvanized groups such as Black Guns Matter which advocated for African American gun ownership in Minneapolis during recent protests, and the newly formed black militia, the Not F---ing Around Coalition which made its first public appearance in May to protest the shooting death of Ahmaud Arbery, a black jogger shot by two white men in Georgia. NFAC recently rallied in Louisville, Kentucky, where Breonna Taylor was shot and killed by police officers who burst into her apartment. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
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Members of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practice at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. Every gun club is different. While NAAGA has grown into a political force, the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club's offers camaraderie, safety and weapons training. "I feel a little more prepared," said registered nurse and Nubian Gun Club member Maliuqka Burton.

REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

Members of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practice at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. Every gun club is different. While NAAGA has grown into a political force, the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club's offers camaraderie, safety and weapons...more

Members of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practice at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. Every gun club is different. While NAAGA has grown into a political force, the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club's offers camaraderie, safety and weapons training. "I feel a little more prepared," said registered nurse and Nubian Gun Club member Maliuqka Burton. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
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Lateif Dickerson, Director and Chief Instructor for the New Jersey Firearms Academy, speaks to a man at the academy in Jersey City, New Jersey. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

Lateif Dickerson, Director and Chief Instructor for the New Jersey Firearms Academy, speaks to a man at the academy in Jersey City, New Jersey. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

Lateif Dickerson, Director and Chief Instructor for the New Jersey Firearms Academy, speaks to a man at the academy in Jersey City, New Jersey. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton
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Members of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practice at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. "Self-preservation is universal law. We should be able to protect ourselves," said Nubian Gun Club member Gahiji Manderson who works in law enforcement. "We're not looking for trouble, but to be able to protect ourselves if trouble comes towards our way."

REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

Members of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practice at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. "Self-preservation is universal law. We should be able to protect ourselves," said Nubian Gun Club member Gahiji Manderson who works in law enforcement....more

Members of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practice at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. "Self-preservation is universal law. We should be able to protect ourselves," said Nubian Gun Club member Gahiji Manderson who works in law enforcement. "We're not looking for trouble, but to be able to protect ourselves if trouble comes towards our way." REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
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Plaques are seen for Lateif Dickerson, Director and Chief Instructor for the New Jersey Firearms Academy, in Jersey City, New Jersey. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

Plaques are seen for Lateif Dickerson, Director and Chief Instructor for the New Jersey Firearms Academy, in Jersey City, New Jersey. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

Plaques are seen for Lateif Dickerson, Director and Chief Instructor for the New Jersey Firearms Academy, in Jersey City, New Jersey. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton
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Members of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practice at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

Members of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practice at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

Members of the Hudson Valley Nubian Gun Club practice at a shooting range in Monroe, New York. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
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