Because nothing says “this will curb violent acts” like making people who were not involved pay more of the price. Commerce protections were passed in 2005 with the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act. This prevented frivolous suits against firearms industry companies just because their product was involved in an incident.
You don’t get to file a lawsuit against Ford if you get hit by an F-150 unless something failed in the F-150 that caused the incident. You don’t get to sue Ford if you’re deliberately hit with an F-150. Someone straight murdering a bunch of people with a vehicle is not grounds for a lawsuit of the vehicle manufacturer on the grounds they “knew” their car could be used to kill.
Lawsuits are about negligence, if the company did something wrong and you got hurt. They do not cover the deliberate acts of people outside of that company’s control. Drunk driving and vehicular homicide are not the fault of Ford, Toyota, Budweiser, or the friggin’ Easter Bunny.
House and Senate Democrats introduced legislation Tuesday they say will allow victims of gun violence to have their day in court.
With the shooter right? The direct perpetrator of the violence and accomplices. No?
Nope, the company who happened to make the gun, whether it was purchased legally, stolen, or what have you…
The Equal Access to Justice for Victims of Gun Violence Act aims to repeal federal protections blocking firearm and ammunition manufacturers, dealers and trade groups from most civil lawsuits when a firearm is used unlawfully or in a crime.
Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., one of the bill’s co-sponsors, said since PLCAA became law, state and federal courts have “dismissed numerous cases against the gun industry,” adding that other cases were likely not brought at all.
Schiff, surrounded by members of gun violence prevention groups including Moms Demand Action, Brady and March For Our Lives, said the purpose of the legislation was to “correct the error Congress made” nearly a decade and a half ago.
“Responsible actors in the gun industry don’t need this limitation on liability. And the irresponsible ones don’t deserve it,” Schiff told reporters at the announcement of the bill.
Because no one would ever bring a frivolous lawsuit against anyone else, right? Why don’t “responsible actors” need this limitation? All it will take is an activist judge or sympathetic jury. Some idiot like the prosecutor in Chicago who let Smollett walk from leading the Chicago PD on an entirely fabricated hate crime hoax, an imbecile of that caliber will absolutely let a suit stand just because Smith & Wesson or Glock built a gun.
Lawrence Keane of the NSSF echoed my earlier point.
“You would no more charge or blame Ford or General Motors for drunk driving accidents,” Keane said, adding that the current law is “working exactly how Congress intended it.”
But… that isn’t a good reason for everyone.
“All we’re doing through this proposal is giving victims of gun violence their day in court,” said Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., a co-sponsor of the Senate version of the bill. “Every other industry has to pay punitive damages if it intentionally and purposefully violates [a] standard of care” toward the community.
What standard of care are you alleging the firearm industry is violating? *cough* guns existing *cough cough*
“That will provide a powerful incentive as it has done in tobacco, in automobiles, in pharmaceutical drugs, for safer products,” Blumenthal added.
“Safer Product” is the deceptive misnomer they want to grind as Democrats remove commerce protections for the firearm industry. The tactic is obvious, they will argue that guns themselves are not safe at all. They will then, as done in California, impose impossible standards and idiotic technology additives to firearms that objectively do nothing but cannot be met by gun makers. Defacto the product becomes illegal because it is ‘unsafe.’
This won’t be a case where a firearm injured someone by malfunction or a dealer illegally transferred a gun they should not have. Those scenarios are already fully criminally and civilly liable. There is no protection for a faulty product or breaking the law.
What Democrats are alleging here is that somehow there is some extra magical protection. ‘Something’ exists for firearms makers that the manufacturers of other potentially dangerous products like farm equipment, vehicles, or power tools don’t have. They do not have any such ‘get out of liability free’ card.
If I pickup a drill and use it per directions and the gears bind, injuring me, I can sue the manufacturer. Same thing with a firearm. If the gun grenades in my hand I can go after them if that was their fault. If I get my knee drilled by a mafia thug looking to collect money I don’t get to sue Makita. If I get my knee drilled by a 9mm from a Smith & Wesson from the same mafia thug it isn’t Smith & Wesson’s fault. Mafia thug and the Mafia who employs him, yes they’re at fault. If Smith & Wesson had run a series of ads saying that using their product line to solve road rage incidents or collect money was the intended use, that could absolutely make them at liable.
I’ve seen some damn goofy advertising in this space…
But illegal violence has not been on that list of marketing topics.
The Equal Access to Justice for Victims of Gun Violence Act is a shameless bloody shirt waving attack on 2nd Amendment rights disguised with a pretty title. SAFE Act 2.0? This isn’t about justice. Justice is perpetrators convicted and imprisoned. Justice would be empowering people with the means for their own protection.
A political capital grab for Democrats? Yep, this that certainly is.