Hillary Touts Her Gun Control Stance . . . Again

(C) 2016 by Alexandria Kincaid

During her “conversation on gun violence” in New York on April 11th, Hillary touted her stance to fight against the law that has, according to her, made it impossible for people to sue gun manufacturers.

Since the beginning of her campaign, Hillary Clinton has shown her complete ignorance of, or deliberate disregard for, the potential liability of firearms manufacturers.  Of course, who cares about the facts?  Her gun control agenda is focused on emotion, regardless of the truth.  I work with firearms dealers and manufacturers everyday.  Their businesses are fraught with potential liability, both civil and criminal.  The law does protect them from the misplaced emotion of over-reaching plaintiffs and the lawyers who would represent them, but otherwise, their business is a tricky one that requires constant and careful diligence.  Congress passed a law giving the manufacturers some protection for good reason: if they did not, manufacturers would soon be put out of business for the actions of criminals.  This situation would allow back-door gun control, as Americans would no longer be able to exercise their right to keep and bear arms if they cannot find a gun to buy.

The following is an excerpt from my book, Infringed, explaining the law that currently provides some protection for firearms manufacturers:

“Chapter 21:  Won’t People Sue Me for Selling Implements of Death if I’m a Dealer or Manufacturer?

There is no doubt that firearms manufacturers come under fire after mass shootings. Victims’ families and the general population look for someone to blame, other than the criminal, who is actually to blame. Although this phenomenon is in and of itself mildly conversation-worthy, it is more interesting that Congress passed a law in 2005 to protect firearms dealers and manufacturers from this type of “negligence” lawsuit.

The Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act of 2005 (PLCAA) is a law that requires that a lawsuit must be thrown out if the person filing the lawsuit claims the manufacturer or dealer was “negligent” in manufacturing a firearm because firearms can kill other people. Manufacturers and dealers can still be held liable for defective products, breach of contract, criminal misconduct, or other violations of the law.

You may be thinking that many other products pose a similar risk of injury to other people. Similar laws protect manufacturers of automobiles, power tools, and other “dangerous” products from overzealous plaintiffs looking for someone to blame for the actions of an individual. Unfortunately, prior to the PLCAA’s enactment, some firearms dealers and manufacturers had been successfully sued for “negligence” for the mere act of producing and distributing firearms to the public.

Of course, the PLCAA does not always stop gun control advocates from trying to punish firearms manufacturers. After the 2012 Sandy Hook school shooting, the victims’ families attempted to sue Bushmaster Firearms International LLC.  These plaintiffs alleged that Bushmaster was negligent in producing and distributing the AR-15 rifle to a populace who is not trained to use it and would not understand its power. They claimed that Bushmaster should have foreseen that someone would misuse such a rifle, because it poses an unreasonable and egregious risk of injury to other people. In a similar suit after the Aurora Theater shootings in Colorado, plaintiffs sued the online ammunition manufacturer. The federal judge deciding the Aurora Theater case not only threw it out, but also ordered that the plaintiffs pay the legal fees of the company they sued. While these lawsuits were rightfully tossed to the curb, the Sandy Hook plaintiffs re-filed their lawsuit in state court, and it is still pending.  Gun control advocates also continue to advocate for the repeal of the PLCAA.”