Superior Court Judge Kenneth Medel said Wednesday that victims and families in the Poway, California, synagogue shooting have adequately alleged that Smith & Wesson, the nation's largest gunmaker, knew its AR-15-style rifle could be easily modified into a machine-gun-like or an assault weapon in violation of state law.
A 2005 federal law shields gunmakers from damages in most cases for crimes committed with their weapons. But it allows lawsuits if the manufacturer was negligent or knowingly violated a state or federal law, the San Francisco Chronicle reported Thursday.
Medel said the plaintiffs in the synagogue shooting case may also be able to sue on their claims that Smith & Wesson negligently marketed the rifle to youths on social media and video game-style ads, the newspaper said.
The judge also said the shop, San Diego Guns, could be sued for selling the weapon to John Earnest, who was 19 and lacked a hunting license that would have exempted him from California's 21-year minimum age for owning long guns.
There is something inherently wrong with a society in which the headline isn't about the civil and legal recourse awarded to victims of a mass shooting AFFORDED BY LAW but about the ABILITY OF THE VICTIMS TO SEEK IT.
WHAT IS WRONG WITH US?
When will we call out those who willfully seek to allow the status quo to continue for the profit of an industry dedicated to death and misery?
Is there really anything I can add other than What is wrong with us?
In 2014 General Motors produced cars that had a defective ignition switch. That resulted in 124 deaths. It also resulted in the recall of 30 million cars worldwide, $900 million in fines plus civil settlements to those harmed by death or injury.
Every year about 150 people are killed or injured by negligent or accidental discharges of firearms*. That's when a gun 'goes off' without intent by the person holding that gun. Every year. As a result there have been no recalls of firearms, no fines and no settlements due to legal actions against firearms companies.
Every time some definable issue with an automobile, or any other consumer product, is discovered be it a defect or just current manufacturing practices immediate governmental recalls are made and the problem corrected. Not with guns. Guns are still manufactured to the same standards they were in the mid 1800s. Only a gun manufacturer can voluntarily initiate a recall of it's product. In addition, gun manufacturers, distributors, importers and sellers are protected by the Protection of Legal Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA) that restricts civil recourse against any of these entities to very narrow and specific conditions.
Just about every one of these 150 deaths or injuries could be prevented with current proven technology. Referred to as Smart Gun technology it can prevent a firearm from being operated by any other than the one authorized to use it. It isn't expensive, adding perhaps $25 to the cost of the firearm and it is absolutely reliable in every conceivable situation. Yet the gun industry vehemently resists adoption and marketing of such technology to the point of death threats to any dealer who offers it to customers. In fact there is not even a requirement for a mechanical safety device on guns**.
What is wrong with us?
*I say 'about' because there aren't any compiled statistics by any agency, governmental or NGO. It's a secret because, well, guns. The numbers I postulate are gleaned from a pro-gun online magazine article based on two years of online searching news paper articles.
**Except for guns designed for a Military Request for Quote. The military, whose most basic job description is to 'tear things up and kill people' has more stringent safety requirements than the civilian market.
It's not over after that trigger is pulled and it hits someone. It's the beginning of a new life, and some people just don't know how to live.
Charles Horton, 50, who's been a wheelchair user since sustaining a spinal cord injury in a 1988 shooting.
There are more than 100,000 people affected by gunshot wounds every year.
What is wrong with us?
Through May of this year, the hospital has treated 35 children for gunshot wounds, in many cases accidental, according to a news release. Accidental or not, gunshot wounds are among the most likely injuries from which children can die.
Two of the 35 children admitted to Cook Childrens died from their wounds, according to the release. In the entirety of 2019, 41 children were admitted for gunshot wounds and five died. In 2020, that number rose to 47 shot and four who died.
Dr. Dan Guzman, an emergency room doctor at Cook Childrens, said in the release he fears that number will continue to rise sharply throughout the summer months. With children out of school and oftentimes at home alone while their parents work, an improperly secured gun can cost a life.
https://www.star-telegram.com/news/local/article252470463.html? (sorry, paywall)
Guns make everything better.
Dallas has seen a string of road rage assaults. From Friday night to Monday morning, police responded to three shootings related to road rage. On Friday, a driver shot a pregnant woman in the head, Fox 4 News reported, after the driver cut her and her boyfriend off in southeast Dallas. The womans baby was delivered safely, but she remained in critical condition. On Sunday, police say a driver opened fire along a road in Dallas and hit two cars. One person was shot in the hand.
An armed society is a polite society. At least that's what I've been told by the gun industry. Guns make everything better.
14 the number of school shootings since March, when many districts returned to in-person classes. Thats the most in that period since at least 1999, though the three killed and eight injured was fewer than the 33 people who died in the same timeframe in 2018. https://www.washingtonpost.com/education/2021/06/24/school-shootings-2021-increase/
More escalation. Kids going back to school . . . with guns.
Guns make everything better! Domestic violence, road rage, job disputes and schools.
This is a chart of gun deaths from 1968 to 2017:
Note the sharp spike in murders that begins in 2014. That trend continues today with the CDC reporting a murder rate of 5.8/100k in 2019 and increases over that in 2020* and 2021* (numbers not finalized as of this post).
What happened in 2014? No pandemic, no major influx of drugs or gangs, economy booming and inflation down while employment up. What changed?
Below is a graph of guns manufactured from 1986 through 2018:
Here is a chart of imports of guns from 1986 to 2018:
Notice the spike in manufacturing and imports that began after 2010 and spiked in 2014? The supply of guns is directly correlated to the increase in gun violence. There is no way to ignore this.
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