— CNN (@CNN) February 27, 2017
The National African American Gun Association had about 9,000 members on Nov. 8. That changed when Donald Trump took an Electoral College victory. They say they now have more than 18,000 members across 24 chapters, according to a CNN profile. It’s a huge boost for an organization that only got started on Feb. 28, 2015.
“I’d be lying to you if I said Donald Trump hasn’t affected our numbers,” Philip Smith, the group’s national president, said. “They have jumped off the roof.”
He attributes this to a huge concern about hate organizations and the like.
“I think the main thing that has really changed is that two years ago, fringe groups were just that: fringe groups,” he said. “But now those fringe groups are kind of like, ‘It’s cool to be racist,’ and they’ve taken that and our community sees that, and it scares us. You know what, let me get a gun just in case something happens, just to make sure.”
Member Sean Campbell says Trump’s election is just the culmination of a lot of variables.
“I won’t necessarily say that the election of Donald Trump individually is the impetus for it, but it’s almost like the perfect storm, right?” he told CNN. “You’ve had a lot of individuals that have been the victim of violent acts. Donald Trump is essentially the cherry on top of the ice cream sundae.”