The U.S. Supreme Court has been reluctant in recent years to hear any cases that deal with Second Amendment issues. However, for the first time in almost a decade, the court has agreed to hear one such case when the justices return in October. The case involves how much control a city can have over gun owners’ rights to transport their weapons.
There are two other gun-related cases that those on both sides hope the justices will also decide to hear. One of those is the Remington Arms Co. v. Soto case. The case stems from the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary school in 2012 in which 21 first-graders along with six adults were killed by the shooter who then took his own life.
The Connecticut Supreme Court ruled that the Sandy Hook families could sue Remington despite the immunity generally afforded gun manufacturers under the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act. That law protects them against lawsuits over criminal acts perpetrated with their products.
There’s an exception in the act that allows civil legal action if a gun-maker or seller knowingly violates a law regarding the marketing or sale of their weapons. The families cited Remington’s ads that showed its gun being used to kill multiple people. This, they argued, was a violation of the Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act.
Remington, in taking the case to the U.S. Supreme Court, argues that if the Connecticut Supreme Court decision is allowed to stand, it “threatens to unleash a flood of lawsuits nationwide.”
The gun control debate in this country shows no signs of abating any time soon. It remains to be seen if the U.S. Supreme Court will take up this case and whether there will be similar cases in the future that challenge the protections that gun manufacturers have had from liability for the actions of those who use their products to injure or kill others.