McClaughry: The Remington Arms case

By John McClaughry

Last Tuesday, the U.S. Supreme Court cleared the way for a lawsuit against Remington Arms Co. brought by survivors of victims of the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting who want the gunmaker held responsible for the deadly attack. The Supreme Court declined to interfere at this point in the proceedings.

Public domain

The Bushmaster XM15-E2S used in the Sandy Hook massacre

The plaintiff’s argument is that the murderer chose the firearm “for its military and assaultive qualities, in particular, its efficiency in inflicting mass casualties,” arguing it was “marketed in association with the military.”

The suit actually challenges the blanket immunity against buyer illegal misuse that Congress granted to firearms manufacturers under the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act of 2005. Remington asked the Supreme Court to halt the lawsuit, citing that protective statute.

Now recall what happened in at Sandy Hook. Two years earlier the shooter’s mother had legally purchased a Remington Bushmaster XM-15 rifle. Her seriously disturbed son went looking for the rifle, found it, murdered his mother with it, and then murdered 20 children and six adults at the school.

The survivor plaintiffs now want Remington to pay them millions in damages.

By the plaintiff’s reasoning, the maker of the car that Steven Bourgoin used to kill five teenagers on Interstate 89 in Williston ought to be held liable for damages.

It’s now up to the Connecticut federal court to decide, and it needs to see this argument as utterly ridiculous.

John McClaughry is vice president of the Ethan Allen Institute. Reprinted with permission from the Ethan Allen Institute Blog.

Image courtesy of Public domain
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10 thoughts on “McClaughry: The Remington Arms case

  1. VT Gun Control. It started when a deranged idiot (one person), mental case sought to shoot up Fair Haven, ref: https://www.sevendaysvt.com/OffMessage/archives/2018/02/16/walters-scott-shifts-gun-stance-following-fair-haven-threat. Political thinking, one stupid action is used to control the law abiding multitudes / residents. Political mentality run amuck.

    That was the trigger to have Gun Control in VT, Scott reversed himself. I wonder why? Followed by the Flatlander Legislature. It seems outside sources like Soros paid someone (or many) off, hence tight Gun Control in safe VT. It’s a pattern. Politicians desire to protect yourself from yourself. Cradle to grave.

    The new Liberal / Socialist VT.

  2. John, by following this line of thinking anyone injured or killed in an auto accident should be able to sue the auto maker because the driver was negligent. I’m truly amazed at the Supreme Court. This ruling is nuts!!!!

  3. Again, the perpetrators of these horrendous crimes always seem to avoid any form
    of accountability, and it appears that it’s always the guns fault, even though all of these
    criminals have a background with a mental illness that was known by some or all that
    knew these perpetrators, including ” Mental Health Professionals ” sounds like they
    should be sued first & foremost !!

    So if you use the SCOTUS logic, then every manufacturer of any product that gets any
    sort of embellishment from advertisement and some ” wackjob ” uses there product and
    kills someone, be it an automobile, alcohol, smartphone, hammer, knife and video games
    the list goes on, could be held liable………………. a pretty slippery slope.

    The PLCAA was put in place to defend this non-sense, so follow the money, perpetrators
    have little to none, manufacturers have plenty ????

  4. This is total BS on steroids.. The whole deal is part of the gun grabbers agenda.. The fault of this know mental midget lanza’s killing spree should fall squarely on the Dr’s that were treating him not a inanimate object that was LOCKED in a gun safe per stupid Conn. law. The gun was lawful the Dr’s were incompetent and until the fault is placed on the REAL problem it will never be solved… The FBI has failed us, The medical profession has failed us, the schools have failed us but it’s the inanimate objects makers fault… ya right.

  5. There is ample data regarding George Soros (Move on dot org) that he has funded such proceedings in his desire to manipulate and destroy the US way of life and the US. Several countries would arrest him if he showed his face there. The US should do the same. He’s for gun control.

    • Soros also funnels tons of cash to local DA races to get more lawless
      leftist lawyers calling the shots on who/what gets charged. The scumbag should have a target on his back and a reward for offs him and his spawn..I’m will to chip in as I’m sure all patriots would be.

  6. Maybe Ginsberg will remove herself, and Trump can appoint another Constitutional Judge to fill her seat giving all of us Americans a better chance of justice in the near future.

  7. Something has changed at the Supreme Court and it is not for the better. We watched with disgust a few years ago as Justice Roberts turned himself into a pretzel attempting to justify his support for Obamacare. We saw the same thing this week during discussions on DACA when one of the left wing female justices announced that “this isn’t about the law, it is about ruining lives”. Now we witness further degradation at SCOTUS with this idiotic attempt at back door gun control. With this precedent how are the courts going to prevent similar actions against companies that manufacture cars, trucks, motorcycles, knives, axes, rope, baseball bats, or any item that can be misused to cause harm to another? It is the job of the Supreme Court to determine the constitutionality of laws, not to make policy in open defiance of laws and common sense. I have lost all respect for this court.

  8. The PLCAA was passed to prevent unscrupulous attempts at bankrupting firearms companies — preemptive gun control, cutting off the lawful supply at the source — by blaming them for the criminal use of their products by other people; frivolous lawsuits.

    It does not get much more frivolous than suing suing Remington for “negligently marketing” the rifle to a middle-aged woman who compounded the so-called crime by “negligently” getting murdered in her bed by her son who went on to kill 26 more children and adults.

    One would think the justices my have at the least familiarized themselves with the applicable law,PLCAA and found no grounds for the case to be in front of ,heard by any court,themselves or Ct.court .

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