Will a $110million Award Destroy Gun Industry?

No matter what the anti-gun lobbyists say, or the NRA says, on this day, in this courtroom, the final word was given by the jury. There have been other lawsuits filed against gun manufacturers in the past and juries have traditionally sided with the gun industry, until today. The $110 million award, which the jury handed the plaintiff today, could cripple the gun industry”

Assault rifle

Exhibit A

The debate that has been raging for decades, in the wake of numbers of mass shootings, has finally been settled; guns are produced with the express purpose of either maiming or killing, they serve no other purpose, and the manufacturers have finally been held accountable. Although there has been significant protest against stricter gun controls in recent years, as the right to keep and bear arms is written into the Constitution, it’s obvious that this jury felt that military style assault weapons are not necessary for the protection of individuals or for the hunting of game and that their sale on the open market has resulted in the untimely deaths of many innocent people, including children.

The defense claimed that the gun manufacturer could no more be held accountable for the deaths than a car manufacturer for road deaths. However, the jury felt differently; cars were invented as a means of transportation and, although their mishandling whether by accident or design can result in death or injury, that is not their intrinsic nature. When guns are used i.e. fired, a bullet is discharged and, should it find the intended target, the result can be nothing other than death or injury. Although arguments were made that knives have been used to commit many murders and the manufacturers have never been held to account, they don’t have the same intrinsic purpose and can be used, for example, to cut food or open packages.

Mass shootingThe claim was also made that if someone intends to kill or to maim they will find the means to do so and therefore it is the mental state of the individual that should be at the heart of the argument and not their weapon of choice. The prosecution argued that, although mental health was an issue, gun manufacturers were doing nothing to prevent the sale or distribution of guns, which can fire up to 100 rounds without reloading, to individuals who, in a moment of extreme emotional instability, then had the means to kill dozens of men, women and children in a matter of minutes. Had that weapon not been available to them then the chances of mass destruction were, unquestionably, much lower.

bullyied boyThe tragic events that saw this case brought to trial resulted in the deaths of 20 young people. A young man who had been brought up around guns and regularly hunted had seen the deaths of many animals at the hands of his father from a young age and at his own from the age of 11 took took his Dad’s semi automatic assault rifle and gunned down 19 of his peers before taking his own life. He was, allegedly, obsessed with violent ‘shoot em up’ video games, considered to be a bit of a loner and was emotionally immature. It is believed that he carried out the attack after a girl he obviously admired publicly rejected his advances which subsequently resulted in much ridicule. Although we will never know for certain, witnesses said that they saw that the young man had tears streaming down his face just before he ended his own life and ‘seemed to have woken up to the reality of what he had just done’. )

As in so many cases, the perpetrator of this terrible attack could not be held accountable for his actions but, after viewing so many heartbreaking photographs of his victims and the harrowing stories of the survivors, this jury decided that the company who provided the means for this wanton destruction of human life could and should be.

I wrote this piece after watching the film The Runaway Jury (and it’s based on that story) but it’s also as a result of reading the arguments used against gun control in the aftermath of mass shootings. I have taken each of the arguments that I have seen on social media and tried to address them dispassionately as one would have to in a trial against a gun manufacturer.

Personally, I cannot see that rightsย of the masses can ever take precedence over the lives of individuals but then again I have no right to bear arms and therefore have nothing to lose.

I would really love to hear your opinions on this subject

Lisa x

 

 

 

 

  9 comments for “Will a $110million Award Destroy Gun Industry?

  1. Tito Jay
    May 19, 2018 at 10:17 am

    Hi Lisa,

    The 2nd Amendment to the US Constitution insures the right to bear arms. I think it was put in because basically all US citizens at the time owned a firearm that they used to hunt game and that the Founding Fathers knew that the USA at the time could only defend itself from European powers like England with armed citizens who were marksman due to the fact that they hunted game. I am not much of a hunter myself, but my father was when he was younger. If you ask anyone who knows anything about firearms they will tell you only one or two bullets can be fired per second with accuracy. Some guns fire a lot more than this. Also if you have any skill as a hunter you should be able to hit what you shooting with one or two shots. I guess I can understand being able to fire a few more rounds if you need the gun for self defense, but the number of rounds some of these weapons can fire is only for a battlefield. I don’t think citizens should own these guns which are for military use. I do support the 1st Ammendment for hunting and reasonable self defense.

    Enjoyed the article!

    Peace

    Jay

    Liked by 1 person

    • Tito Jay
      May 19, 2018 at 10:24 am

      Hi Lisa,

      Kind of messed up my last sentence in the big paragraph. I meant to say I support the 2nd Amendment, but the 1st Amendment is great, too!

      Peace

      Jay

      Liked by 1 person

    • May 19, 2018 at 10:30 am

      Thanks so much for your comment Jay, it’s really nice so hear from someone who has an experience of gun culture and yet still feels that these assault weapons should not be owned by citizens. Thanks once again and have a great day ;O) x

      Liked by 1 person

  2. May 19, 2018 at 12:51 pm

    I agree that the gun proponents who say we should ban cars and knives when those are used to do harm are overlooking the fact that those objects are created for other purposes. Guns are created only for the purpose of doing harm. Thanks for the thoughtful post!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. May 22, 2018 at 1:30 pm

    Well constructed, Lisa! One of my favorite tweets on the subject came out just after Parkland: “We can’t do anything about the gun laws in this country because some guys in a room 240 years ago said we can’t.”

    Poppycock.

    I don’t know if a massive lawsuit would cripple the gun industry, and their powerful lobby, but it might. Regardless, we need to listen to the will of the American people on this (97% want universal background checks, 2/3 want some form of tougher gun laws) and look at the success other countries have had in stemming the tide of bloodshed. As I said in my own article, we have problems in America that go beyond the guns so I believe our rate of terrible incidents like this one would still be higher than the rest of the world, even with better gun laws. But better gun laws might cut the rate of gun death in half, or more, without seriously limiting the rights of Americans to own guns. How about we save the 15-20,000 lives we know we can? Like, now.

    And then let’s also start working on the causes of the rage. I have some ideas on that subject, too. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Again, great job. I’m all for limiting the power of the gun lobby but just in case we can’t, let’s start voting in folks in America that aren’t beholden to them. It’s time we changed the culture, and that starts right here with Tom (and, you know, everyone else). ๐Ÿ˜Ž

    Like

    • May 22, 2018 at 2:35 pm

      Thanks for the kind words Tom and I agree with everything youโ€™ve said here. Iโ€™m English but live in the south of France so not directly affected but I find myself sickened by the attitude of those that our rights above lives in the wake of all these terrible tragedies. As you say something must be done- youโ€™re the man for the job Tom ๐Ÿ˜‰

      Liked by 1 person

      • May 22, 2018 at 4:25 pm

        Haha! Thanks. And I figured you were too wise to be American. ๐Ÿ˜‰

        Like

      • May 22, 2018 at 4:39 pm

        ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚ I donโ€™t know about that x

        Liked by 1 person

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