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Court says gun maker can be sued over Newtown shooting

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When a true genius appears, you can know him by this sign: that all the dunces are in a confederacy against him. Jonathan Swift

Vladimir Lenin -  “the goal of socialism is communism.” 

 

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The decision to allow law suits is based on how Remington advertised.  Does this set a precedence to allow the suing of manufacturers because of their advertisements?   Examples:

What about the car manufacturer that shows a car drive fast and maneuvering through city streets?  So some unlawful driver drives a car through New York City resulting in killing and injuring people, BUT the car manufacturer is liable for deaths and injuries because of an advertisement?

What about the fast food vender that advertises delicious, but unhealthy food?  So some consumer eats themselves into a massive heart attack, BUT the fast food vender is liable for the heart attack because of an advertisement?

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Isn't there already a Federal law in effect that bars lawsuits against firearm manufacturers for selling arms legally?  Wouldn't that also cover advertising the sale of arms legally?

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Would love to know what advertisement has their knickers in a twist

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When a true genius appears, you can know him by this sign: that all the dunces are in a confederacy against him. Jonathan Swift

Vladimir Lenin -  “the goal of socialism is communism.” 

 

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sets a very dangerous precedent for media like video games, movies, comics, toys etc. Is NERF next? What about COD? 

If they want to take it to this level, and I do understand why, they need to take a look at society and our love affair with "cool guns". And it doesn't come from the manufacturers. Heck, look at the army recruitment videos. 

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If I read the story correctly, the suit is in state court. I believe when it gets appealed to the federal level is when the laws are about firearm manufacturers being sued for liability....

Sent from my SM-G960U using Tapatalk

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'life is hard, its harder when your stupid' John Wayne

'The wisdom of hindsight, so useful to historians and indeed authors of memoirs, is sadly denied to practicing politicians' Margaret Thatcher

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A crack may have been created in the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA), the 2005 federal law designed to shield firearms manufacturers from direct legal liability for crimes committed by third-party individuals using their weapons. In a 4-3 ruling Thursday, the Connecticut Supreme Court overturned a lower court's dismissal of a liability lawsuit against Remington Outdoor Co. brought by nine family members of victims of the 2012 massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

In its narrow ruling, the court actually upheld the lower court's dismissal of all aspects of the lawsuit except a key one regarding the state's authority in regulation of marketing. The court stated, "The regulation of advertising that threatens the public's health, safety, and morals has long been considered a core exercise of the states' police powers." The decision further states:

We conclude that the trial court properly determined that, although most of the plaintiffs' claims should have been dismissed, PLCAA does not bar the plaintiffs' wrongful marketing claims... Specifically, if the defendants did indeed seek to expand the market for their assault weapons through advertising campaigns that encouraged consumers to use the weapons not for legal purposes such as self-defense, hunting, collecting, or target practice, but to launch offensive assaults against their perceived enemies, then we are aware of nothing in the text or legislative history of PLCAA to indicate that Congress intended to shield the defendants from liability for the tragedy that resulted.

To put it simply, the court ruled that Remington, maker of the Bushmaster AR-15 rifle stolen and then used by the Sandy Hook assailant, could potentially be held legally liable for how its firearm was used based upon how it marketed its product. The court is stretching in its attempt to find a hole in PLCAA. How do we know? One clear indication is that the judges used the misnomer "assault weapons" when describing Remington's marketing. We may be wrong, but we can't think of a single gun manufacturer that uses this bogus term to describe its semiautomatic rifles. Thus, the judges say, the lawsuit can proceed based on malicious mischaracterization by the Left, not marketing by Remington.

Gun-control activists were quick to celebrate the ruling, seeing in it a roadmap for getting around PLCAA protections to go after firearm manufacturers. Adam Winkler of UCLA School of Law observed, "This is a landmark and potentially historic ruling. It opens up an avenue to hold gunmakers responsible despite federal immunity. It will encourage a lot more litigation."

The lawsuit will now proceed in the lower court, where the plaintiffs will attempt to make the case that Remington marketed its firearms in such a fashion as to have encouraged their illegal use. This clearly sets up a collision course with constitutional rights protected by the First and Second Amendments. If influencing the illegal use of firearms via marketing makes an organization liable for criminal activity, then Hollywood and video-game creators top the list of the worst offenders.

The Patriot Post

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3 hours ago, Rattler said:

A crack may have been created in the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA), the 2005 federal law designed to shield firearms manufacturers from direct legal liability for crimes committed by third-party individuals using their weapons. In a 4-3 ruling Thursday, the Connecticut Supreme Court overturned a lower court's dismissal of a liability lawsuit against Remington Outdoor Co. brought by nine family members of victims of the 2012 massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

In its narrow ruling, the court actually upheld the lower court's dismissal of all aspects of the lawsuit except a key one regarding the state's authority in regulation of marketing. The court stated, "The regulation of advertising that threatens the public's health, safety, and morals has long been considered a core exercise of the states' police powers." The decision further states:

We conclude that the trial court properly determined that, although most of the plaintiffs' claims should have been dismissed, PLCAA does not bar the plaintiffs' wrongful marketing claims... Specifically, if the defendants did indeed seek to expand the market for their assault weapons through advertising campaigns that encouraged consumers to use the weapons not for legal purposes such as self-defense, hunting, collecting, or target practice, but to launch offensive assaults against their perceived enemies, then we are aware of nothing in the text or legislative history of PLCAA to indicate that Congress intended to shield the defendants from liability for the tragedy that resulted.

To put it simply, the court ruled that Remington, maker of the Bushmaster AR-15 rifle stolen and then used by the Sandy Hook assailant, could potentially be held legally liable for how its firearm was used based upon how it marketed its product. The court is stretching in its attempt to find a hole in PLCAA. How do we know? One clear indication is that the judges used the misnomer "assault weapons" when describing Remington's marketing. We may be wrong, but we can't think of a single gun manufacturer that uses this bogus term to describe its semiautomatic rifles. Thus, the judges say, the lawsuit can proceed based on malicious mischaracterization by the Left, not marketing by Remington.

Gun-control activists were quick to celebrate the ruling, seeing in it a roadmap for getting around PLCAA protections to go after firearm manufacturers. Adam Winkler of UCLA School of Law observed, "This is a landmark and potentially historic ruling. It opens up an avenue to hold gunmakers responsible despite federal immunity. It will encourage a lot more litigation."

The lawsuit will now proceed in the lower court, where the plaintiffs will attempt to make the case that Remington marketed its firearms in such a fashion as to have encouraged their illegal use. This clearly sets up a collision course with constitutional rights protected by the First and Second Amendments. If influencing the illegal use of firearms via marketing makes an organization liable for criminal activity, then Hollywood and video-game creators top the list of the worst offenders.

The Patriot 

then Hollywood and video-game creators top the list of the worst offenders.

I don't  see how they can make a case against Remington for that .

But definitely could make the case  that the sandy hook kid was influenced by Hollywood and video game companies who show lots of violence in many of there movies and games. They should be worried. 

 

Edited by Storm914

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This activist ruling comes from the Connecticut Supreme Court.  It will be appealed to a US District Court and overturned.  

The intention of PLCAA was to prevent anti-gun activists from financially crippling firearm manufacturers with continuous litigation.  This is exactly what the Connecticut Supreme Court is hoping to do by allowing this lawsuit to proceed.

It also hopes to gain political traction against firearm manufacturers by convincing low IQ anti-gun zealots that these manufacturers have legal protections not afforded any other consumer goods manufacturer, which is entirely false, as knife makers, car makers, baseball bat makers, etc., are protected from lawsuits when their legal products are used for criminal purposes by miscreants.

They have no chance of proving any Remington rifle was ever advertised as an offensive weapon, or sold as a tool of aggression.  What they hope to accomplish is a flood of lawsuits that would cost Remington billions, thereby putting them out of business.

If they can't take the guns we already have, they will make damn sure any new ones are no longer made, or cost at least 10 times more to buy then they do now.

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The law the plaintiffs invoked was the Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act (CUTPA), which prohibits any person from “engag[ing] in unfair methods of competition and unfair or deceptive acts or practices in the conduct of any trade or commerce.”

The plaintiffs advanced two theories as to how this applied to the defendants’ behavior.

First, they asserted that any sale of an AR-15 to the civilian population was necessarily a fraudulent commercial practice, because (so they claimed) such firearms have no legitimate civilian use.

Never mind the fact that the AR-15 is, by all accounts, the most popular centerfire rifle in America, that it is owned by millions of law-abiding people who use it for every legitimate purpose for which a gun can be used.

It is also notable with respect to this claim that Congress enacted the PLCAA the year after it allowed the Clinton Gun Ban to expire in 2004. Congress was well aware that gun control advocates hate AR-15s and similar guns and want them permanently banned, but it did not exempt them from the PLCAA’s protection. Indeed, an important principle underlying the PLCAA is that the legislatures get to determine how to regulate firearms, not the courts.

The Connecticut Supreme Court, however, did not decide whether the sales and marketing of AR-15s to the general public is inherently fraudulent, finding only that the statute of limitations had expired on that particular claim. But the court at least left the door open for future such claims in other cases.

The second CUTPA theory the plaintiffs advanced was the outrageous accusation that Bushmaster intentionally marketed its version of the AR-15 to school shooters and other violent criminals and that the perpetrator of the Newtown crimes choose to use that gun at least in part because of this. 

The supposed evidence the plaintiffs used for this claim was Remington ad copy that used militaristic images and language, appeals to patriotism, references to the gun’s use and proofing in combat.

These are, of course, the same advertising techniques used to sell any number of other lawful products to law-abiding people, from pants, to sunglasses, to boots, to vehicles.  The fact that a customer might appreciate knowing that an item – especially one for use in protecting his or her home and loved ones – performed well under demanding circumstances is hardly proof that it is purposely being marketed to deranged killers.

But that premise was enough for the Connecticut Supreme Court to require the defendants in the case to spend millions of dollars defending themselves from what is certain to be prolonged and costly litigation that publicly portrays the companies and their products in the most negative ways possible.

This was so, even though the majority acknowledged CUTPA had never been used to bring a firearm-related case in Connecticut and indeed had never even been applied to a personal injury case.

And if there was any remaining doubt about where the majority stood on the issue of AR-15s, they also included a totally unnecessary commentary suggesting the limits of the Second Amendment, which wasn’t even raised as an issue in the case. In particular, the court opined, “It is not at all clear … the second amendment’s protections even extend to the types of … rifles at issue in the present case.”

To their credit, three judges dissented from the majority opinion as it applied to the ability to use CUTPA to circumvent the PLCAA, even as they indicated their own disagreement with the choices Congress made with the Act.  “It is not the province of this court, under the guise of statutory interpretation, to legislate a particular policy, even if it were to agree that it is a better policy than the one endorsed by the legislature as reflected in its statutory language,” the Chief Judge wrote in his dissent.

With the viability of the PLCAA now in jeopardy, it is likely the defendants will appeal the case to the U.S. Supreme Court. Whether any intervention comes quickly enough to save the gun industry from a renewed campaign of frivolous litigation remains to be seen.

NRA-ILA

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