I've been hearing alot today on the radio about bills being pushed in the congress to protect firearms manufacturers from being sued when their products are used illegally.
Lately there has been much ballyhoo regarding the NRA and their support of this legislation. And it is really starting to rub me the wrong way.
Firstly I feel like the NRA, us and the congress are being USED to protect big business.
Secondly, where is the legislation to protect us the little people.
I understand that protection from lawsuits would be nice for these big companies, but don't the big awards go thru juries? Wouldn't the "average person" need to feel like there was guilt before making a huge award? I mean McDonalds gets sued because they Supersize, and we don't see the National Obesity Organization lobbying for fast food providers to free from the burden of being sued.
Maybe I'm wrong about all this, I just feel the need to vent a little, and wonder where our protection is.
Any one of us can be thrown in Jail for american parts count violation, or putting a folding stock on their sks, or attaching a second vertical grip to their pistol.
Aren't we the ones that need protection?
You're right, this doesn't offer any protection to individuals. It will prevent the anti-gun crowd from bankrupting the industry through frivolous lawsuits. The gun grabbers have been increasingly turning to the courts to push their agenda. A lot of lawsuits have targeted manufacturers and dealers as being responsible when a criminal uses a gun in a crime. That's like blaming GM, or a GM dealer when someone uses a car in a crime.
Look at the tobacco industry, and the large awards that juries have given to plantiffs in those cases. The firearms industry can't sustain those kinds of judgements. And without this type of law being passed, that industry-killing judgement will arrive sooner or later.
So while the bill doesn't offer individuals anything directly, it's indirect benefit is that there will still be manufacturers making guns for us to buy. IMHO, it's one of the best pro-gun bills of recent times. Now we just need to push for the removal of the "sporting purpose" clauses, the repeal of the import ban, the repeal of the post-86 machine gun ban, and, well, there's still a long tough road to travel. But this is a good start.
IS S. 397 A TROJAN HORSE?
You may have heard a lot of praise for S. 397, which last
week passed the U.S. Senate. This bill is supposedly
intended to protect firearms manufacturers against nuisance
There's been minor grumbling about the "safety lock"
provisions in the proposed legislation, but otherwise S.
397 has had overwhelming support.
Just about the time we were wondering why even some usually
gun-unfriendly senators like Herb Kohl (D-WI) were in favor
of this bill, an alert Congresswatcher contacted us with a
"The only thing I see that's good about the bill," this
sharp-eyed observer wrote, "is that it hasn't become law."
After taking a closer look, we agree.
As our correspondent pointed out, the real problem lies in
Sec. 6 "Armor Piercing Ammunition."
THIS SECTION COULD ALLOW ALL CENTERFIRE RIFLE AMMO TO BE
Part One of Sec. 6 makes it illegal to make, import, sell
or deliver any "armor-piercing" ammunition EXCEPT:
1) For the use of state and federal government departments
2) For export
3) For Attorney General-approved testing.
Part Two "enhances" criminal sentences for anyone who
possesses "armor-piercing" ammunition during the commission
of a crime.
Part Three is where the trap is really sprung. Because this
part instructs the U.S. Attorney General to "conduct a
study to determine whether a uniform standard for the
testing of projectiles against Body Armor is feasible."
NOTE WELL: The tests to determine whether or not ammo is
"armor piercing" are NOT to be conducted against armor
plate, such as that used on military combat vehicles. The
tests are to be conducted against body armor. And as anyone
knowledgeable about firearms knows, VIRTUALLY ALL RIFLE
AMMO WILL PENETRATE BODY ARMOR. So will some pistol ammo.
We asked firearms maker Len Savage if the warning we
received was well-taken or whether this was simply a
misinterpretation of the proposed law. Here's Len's reply:
"Yes. This gives the A.G. the power to say what is and is
not "armor piercing." There is no language for what type of
test is to be conducted (other than ballistic vests). If
the test were on 1 inch "rolled homogeneous armor plate"
then there would be no problem. If the test is a level I
"vest" material, then EVERYTHING including .22 longs, are
going to be illegal ammo.
"The bill would effectively give the power to decide to ONE
person. NO vote, NO appeal, NO rights. (Just like the
current mess with [the sloppy, no-standards testing
practices of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and
"I figured it was a matter of time before they got around
to figuring out: Control the ammo and you control the guns.
Of course there would be born a "black market" for ammo,
very close to the black market for marijuana, in size,
scope, and risks. Next will be the sentencing
recommendations for possession, and distributing (dealing).
Components will be viewed as constructive intent of illegal
manufacturing of "terrorist material."
"This is a dangerous path for America. I am forced to ask
myself: Why the continued attack and obvious methodical
disarming of American Citizens? There is only one answer:
control and power."
Just as "Saturday-Night specials," "military-style assault
weapons," "cop-killer bullets," and "sporting purposes"
have all been used as deceptive, emotionally loaded key
words to justify regulations and outright bans, it now
appears that the designation "armor-piercing ammunition" is
likely to be mis-applied in an attempt to deprive Americans
of their rights.
We should all be asking some serious questions about the
real impact S. 397 will have on our freedoms if it becomes
law. One important question is: Why are our "leaders" so
desperate that they would attempt to slip such a
potentially draconian provision into a supposedly pro-gun
The Liberty Crew
S. 397, Sec. 6
http://tinyurl.com/9u8mt (click on [S.397.ES])