On pie day, in a 4:3 vote, a court granted anti-gun advocates a Holy Grail item. They were handed the keys to the kingdom to sue every gun manufacturer and put them out of business.
In litigation stemming from the Sandy Hook shooting, a Superior Court reinstated the wrongful death suit against Remington. Dirtbag #11 chose to utilize a Bushmaster AR for his carnage.
A lower court previously dismissed the suit as being prohibited by the 2005 federal law (Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act) against such suits. The basis of that law is that a manufacturer is not responsible for the illegal end use of its products by a customer.
Here are a couple of non-gun-related examples of how the 2005 law would work. It would not protect a tobacco or alcoholic beverage company intentionally marketing its products to minors, as that would be an attempt to circumvent other existing laws. It would protect Ford and Dodge from DUI lawsuits or Duct tape from liability in kidnapping attempts. Remington would be no different from Ford or Duct tape in this case.
The appeals court invalidated that law, which was specifically passed to protect gun companies from such legislation. As I am sure most of you are aware, Dirtbag #11 murdered his mother to obtain the Bushmaster in question. Thus, he did not purchase the firearm from Remington or an authorized reseller of Remington products. He literally committed murder to procure the product and the court determined that as Remington’s fault because of “aggressive advertising practices.”
Justice Richard Palmer wrote for the majority, “The regulation of advertising that threatens the public’s health, safety, and morals has long been considered a core exercise of the states’ police powers.”
The court also referenced Dirtbag #11’s deteriorating mental health, his preoccupation with violence and death as a reason for not allowing him to have access to firearms. That Dirtbag #11 should not have had access to firearms is correct, but how is that a fault of Remington? Again, he murdered his mother when she denied him access to her legally owned firearms.
This must and will be overturned. However, that is not the true issue here. The continued financial drain of fighting these lawsuits, bad press, and necessity of Remington to focus so much corporate energy on fighting this are the true penalty. The process is the penalty.
When this wrings itself out, our shortsighted federal lawmakers need to include an enforcement clause for such “process as penalty” suits. When the claim eventually is dismissed, the plaintiff should pay the defendant’s legal fees in triplicate, possibly adding in lost sales, goodwill, and other associated costs. If the plaintiff is not deep-pocketed enough to shoulder that burden, it must fall on the shoulders of the lawyers bringing the banned suit.
I won’t even talk about the cost of the tar and feathers for the activist judges involved.