The Crossroads of the West Gun Show, held annually at the Ontario convention center, saw a four-hour line to get in and ammunition in short supply as nervous gun owners and advocates say they want to stock up in case Congress and President Barack Obama move to curtail assault weapons and other firearms in the wake of a school shooting in Connecticut that killed 20 children.
"It's out of control this weekend," said Ryan Girard, 41, who arrived at 6 a.m. Sunday to get in, only to find 500 people already in line ahead of him. "People are just scared of what could or could not happen."
The Los Angeles Times said four tractor-trailers of ammunition had been brought in and suppliers had sold three-quarters of it as of Sunday.
Obama has expressed support for renewing the nation's ban on assault rifles like the kind used in the Newtown, Conn., shooting and for banning high-volume magazine clips that allow shooters to get off 30 rounds before being forced to reload. He has ordered his administration, led by Vice President Joe Biden, a long-time gun control advocate, to review national policy and make recommendations for changes in the wake of the Newtown tragedy.
Those in attendance in Ontario expressed reservations about what will come of it.
"Everybody feels bad, no doubt," said Hector Garcia, who managed a booth at the gun show. "But banning guns and restricting people is not going to do anything to prevent that crazy person."