10/22/99 Smith & Wesson: Fleeing The Lawsuit Mania

Smith & Wesson: Fleeing the Lawsuit Mania
Gun Owners of America
8001 Forbes Pl., Ste. 102,
Springfield, VA 22151
Phone: (703) 321-8585   Fax: (703) 321-8408

For Further Information Contact: Kathleen Gennaro 703-321-8585
October 22, 1999

“Smith & Wesson’s newly-announced code of ethics will do nothing to reduce crime,” said GOA Executive Director Larry Pratt.

“The only benefit that may be gained will be some protection from the malicious lawsuits being filed by states and cities who are seeking to take responsibility from criminals and place it in the deeper pockets of gun manufacturers.

“There are only two ways to reduce crime. One is to make punishment more swift, particularly violent criminals. For the death penalty to deter, it would have to be administered much more quickly than at present.

“The second way to reduce crime is the time-tested policy of encouraging civilians to carry concealed firearms. In those jurisdictions which have done so, violent crime has droped. In the other jurisdictions which have refused to do so, violent crime remains high.

“The civilian disarmament jurisdictions of our country prevent their citizens from adding to the estimated 3,000,000 people a year who use a gun in self defense, according to the pro-disarmament Los Angeles Times.

“If government officials could be sued, then mayors of cities such as Chicago which have banned handguns should be held liable for the death and injury resulting from their civilian disarmament policies.

“S&W’s policy of asking dealers to keep existing laws will only benefit their stockholders if the policy keeps them from being successfully sued. That is an understandable objective, but it should not be confused with crime control.”