Mass Shootings

A Major Success for Gun Control

from The Gray Area:
As reported in the Wall Street Journal today, Remington Arms Co. will pay $73 million to families who lost loved ones in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in a landmark settlement that could open the door to more lawsuits seeking to hold gun companies liable for mass shootings. The settlement is the largest of its kind and first since a federal law was enacted in 2005 providing gun makers with broad protection from liability in the unlawful use of their weapons, said Timothy Lytton, Georgia State University College of Law professor. Gun manufacturers have paid settlements in the past 17 years to gun owners over alleged product defects, but not to victims of gun violence. The federal immunity law has an exception, under which manufacturers may be liable for injuries resulting from violations of state laws dealing with the marketing of their products. The families sued Remington under Connecticut’s Unfair Trade Practices Act, a broad consumer protection law that prohibits unfair or deceptive acts in commerce. They said Remington violated that law because its promotional materials for the Bushmaster rifle encouraged violent behavior. There are five primary strategies of the gun control movement whose objective is the elimination of all guns in America. The objective used to be to repeal of the 2nd amendment to the Constitution, but they have learned that is fundamentally impossible. However, eliminating guns through other means is a more attainable objective. To do this, they are using five strategies: 1. Limitations on purchase and ownership. Limit gun magazines and purchases, expand background checks and register all gun owners, and ban assault weapons. 2. Sue gun owners when they use their guns. 3. Confiscation like that in Australia. 4. Sue gun manufacturers for the actions of gun owners. 5. Stopping banks and insurance companies from backing gun manufacturers. Net, net of this strategy. If guns are difficult to purchase, users are sued if they use them, and guns are too costly to make because of lawsuits, without touching the Second Amendment, you have successfully smothered guns makers and gun rights in America. That is why today's settlement is a major success for the gun control crowd. That fact is clearly admitted in the discussions around this settlement.  For example: 1. This has nothing to do with the kids who were slaughtered or stopping such events in the future. “Today is not about honoring our son Benjamin." ... said Francine Wheeler, mother to 6-year-old Ben. Today marks an inflection point when our duty of care to our children as a society finally supersedes the bottom line of the industry that made such an atrocity as Sandy Hook possible to begin with,” said Veronique De La Rosa, the mother of six-year-old Noah Pozner, who died at Sandy Hook. This is only about gun control. Josh Koskoff, a lawyer for victims, said Tuesday that the suit was just as much about greed as it was guns. The lawyer said the settlement “should serve as a wake-up call not only to the gun industry, but also the insurance and banking companies that prop it up.”“For the gun industry, it’s time to stop recklessly marketing all guns to all people for all uses and instead ask how marketing can lower risk rather than court it,” Koskoff said. 2. Adam Lanza, the shooter, is hardly mentioned in the case, other than as the person with the gun manufactured by the murders at Remington. Yet he is responsible, not Remington. The fact that this country does nothing to stop mentally disturbed people from walking our streets is the problem here. Not the gun manufacturer. Without the rifle, Adam Lanza would have done something else, bomb, knife, car. whatever. 3. The settlement will be evenly divided among nine families who lost loved ones in the 2012 shooting in Newtown, Conn., that left 20 children and six staff members dead. 26 dead, nine families get millions. Hmmm? Sandy Hook was a terrible tragedy. We must focus on finding the real cause of such demented actions. I had an opportunity to speak to the mother of a child killed that day. Her life has been shattered in every way possible. She is not involved in this or any other lawsuit. 4. Making people rich off of tragedy is disgusting. Same thing happens in cities when police shoot someone. This has to stop. They go after corporations like Remington because they have money and insurance companies with money. If they really wanted to help they could have gone after the Lanza family for not protecting society from their troubled son. But, there is no money in that and the political narrative and objective is gun control, not stopping mass shootings like this. Mass shootings are teh vehicle for gun control.  Gin control is not the vehicle to stop mass shootings. 6. This was an insurance company settlement. If there is good news in this settlement, this is it. Remington declared bankruptcy in 2020. Industry representatives argued that the settlement won’t affect other gun makers because it was agreed to by Remington’s insurers after the company went bankrupt. Functioning firearms manufacturers would more vigorously defend themselves, they said. The federal law, the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, “will continue to block baseless lawsuits that attempt to blame lawful industry companies for the criminal acts of third parties,” said Lawrence Keane, senior vice president and general counsel for the National Shooting Sports Foundation, which represents gun makers. 7. Granted, commercials like these are unnecessary and need to be changed:
  • One of the advertisements often cited by the families featured an image of a Bushmaster AR-15 model along with the phrase “Consider your man card reissued.”
  • Another advertisement showed a rifle along with the phrase, “Forces of opposition, bow down. You are single-handedly outnumbered.”
If marketing of firearms was the real issue, then why don't these victims also sue Hollywood? They market firearms for the killing power and have a much greater impact on people than commercials. So, why limit the attention to gun manufacturers? See strategy #4  & 5 above. More From Wall Street Journal: More From New York Post:

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