According to this article by The Tribunist (which in turn quotes USA Today), emphasis added

In all, the FBI fielded 203,086 [background check] requests on Black Friday, up from the previous single-day highs of 185,713 last year and 185,345 in 2015. The two previous records also were recorded on Black Friday.

The article mentions that a single background check can be used for the sale of multiple firearms, while some checks are rejected.

The number of active US Marines in 2017 was expected to be around 175,000 according to heritage.org

I was unable to find the quoted FBI background check statistics.


  1. Number of firearms sold on Black Friday is equal or greater than the number of active US Marines (article title)
  2. Number of background checks associated with firearm purchasing in the same time period proportional (article body)


There is a mismatch between the article's title and body.

How many firearms were actually sold on this year's Black Friday?

  • 7
    The article itself calls out that the number of firearms sold is not the same as the number of background checks, and calls out a few reasons why they are not equivalent. It doesn't even make claim #2, the closest it comes is (emphasis mine): "However, if the numbers even somewhat accurately capture the number of firearms sold, Americans purchased enough guns to arm every member of the approximately 182,000 active duty US Marines." Aside from a click-bait title, I don't know that either of those claims are actually being made. – femtoRgon Nov 28 '17 at 16:42
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    I think vast majority of background checks will be approved. After all most people are eligible to buy a firearm, and those that are not are not as likely to apply. – ventsyv Nov 28 '17 at 19:37
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    Looking at it different way, even if we assume accurate numbers, 203,086 background checks is less than 1 per 1,500 population (census bureau, 2016). The Marine Corps really isn't that big. – Ben Barden Nov 28 '17 at 20:17
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    I would think the vast majority of background checks will be approved--most people who are ineligible will know it and not even try. – Loren Pechtel Nov 30 '17 at 2:01
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    Another reason this would be an undercount of gun sales: Not all sales require a background check. Around here a concealed carry license will let you walk out with your gun immediately, no check. (You couldn't have gotten that license without passing the background check.) According to the clerk I learned that from there are even some people with permits who never carry--they have them simply to avoid paying for the background checks. – Loren Pechtel Nov 30 '17 at 2:04

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