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VinBucFan

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: February 15, 2013, 12:37:35 AM

http://articles.latimes.com/2013/feb/05/opinion/la-oe-schiff-nra-liability-shield-20130205

Liability, guns and the law

No industry deserves the right to act with reckless disregard for the public safety.
February 05, 2013|By Adam Schiff

Last summer, David Garcia was sentenced to life in prison for the 2003 murder of rookie Burbank Police Officer Matthew Pavelka.

Pavelka and another officer, Gregory Campbell, had approached two men sitting in a car without a license plate in an area known for gang activity. Garcia immediately opened fire on the officers, killing Pavelka and severely injuring Campbell. Pavelka was only 26.

Garcia, a known gang member with an extensive criminal history, would not have passed a background check to buy a gun. He acquired the weapon he used to kill Pavelka from a "straw purchaser" someone with no criminal record who could pass the background check and later illegally convey the weapon to someone who couldn't.

The background check system is meant to keep guns out of the hands of killers like Garcia, but it is all too often circumvented by straw purchasers who buy large quantities of guns and resell them.

In many cases, it is not difficult for a gun dealer to tell when someone is a straw purchaser and intends to traffic in guns. The purchaser might seek to buy dozens of the same weapon; in such large quantity, these are not intended for personal use. Most dealers will turn away these purchasers. But a small proportion of unscrupulous gun dealers turn a blind eye to such fraudulent transactions, with tragic consequences. Pavelka's murder may have been one of those consequences.

The Pavelka family filed a lawsuit against the gun dealer who sold the guns used to shoot Matthew, arguing that the dealer did not take reasonable steps to prevent the sale of the firearms to the straw purchaser who likely intended to resell the weapon on the black market. In an ordinary case involving any product other than guns, the family could have gathered evidence and subpoenaed witnesses to build their case and learn more about the sale. Yet the family's suit was dismissed almost immediately thanks to a special legal immunity that Congress gave gun manufacturers, distributors and dealers, and their trade associations, in 2005. Unlike any other industry, the gun industry can commit negligence with impunity.

In 2005, when Congress passed the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, granting the gun industry immunity in state and federal court from civil liability in most negligence and products liability actions, the National Rifle Assn. called passage "vitally important" and fought hard for it. Although there are exceptions in the law, it has been broadly interpreted to preclude most negligence lawsuits. The result is that unlike the makers of chain saws, knives, automobiles, drugs, alcohol or even cigarettes gun manufacturers and sellers have a lesser obligation to act with reasonable care for public safety.

When Congress passed the legislation, Sen. Larry Craig (R-Idaho), the chief sponsor of the bill and, at the time, an NRA board member, stated that "this bill will not prevent a single victim from obtaining relief for wrongs done to them by anyone in the gun industry." In reality, several cases have been dismissed on the basis of the law, even when the gun dealers and manufacturers acted in a fashion that would qualify as negligent if it involved other products. Victims in these cases were denied the right to introduce evidence of negligence and seek justice.

Most gun dealers are responsible businesspeople, and according to a 2000 report from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms that studied gun trace data from 1998, 85% of dealers sold no guns used in a crime. It's a small minority just 1% of dealers that sell 57% of the guns that end up being used to commit criminal acts. Good gun companies don't need special protection from the law, and bad gun companies don't deserve it.

We need to pierce the liability shield that the NRA and gun manufacturers have helped build for bad actors through this law. That's why I have introduced legislation the Equal Access to Justice for Victims of Gun Violence Act to ensure that the victims of gun violence are allowed to have their day in court.

The criminal law system provided one measure of justice for the Pavelka family, and the civil courts should be available to do the same. We may never know whether the gun dealer who sold the weapon used to kill Matthew knew the purchaser was a phony who would pass it on to a violent criminal, because the Pavelka family was denied the chance to find out.

No industry deserves the right to act with reckless disregard for the public safety.

Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Burbank) is a former federal prosecutor and a member of the House Congressional Gun Violence Prevention Task Force.



That is why 30,000 people per year die from guns. That is why there are 310 millions guns in the US.  Immunity for manufacturers has nothing to do with the 2nd Amendment, it has to do with MONEY


olafberserker

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#1 : February 15, 2013, 08:22:04 AM

Glad you started another thread.  We needed more of these for you to get owned in .....

VinBucFan

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#2 : February 15, 2013, 09:36:33 AM

"On October 26, 2005, President Bush signed into law S. 397, the "Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act," a bill that prohibits victims of the gun industry's negligent practices from filing lawsuits in America's courts. No other industry in the country benefits from such special legal protection."


gr8ful87

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#3 : February 15, 2013, 02:35:10 PM

My god you really need to educate yourself.
You really have no clue. If you think that this article says it all you are very mistaken.
It was signed in to laws for a very valid reason.
Do a little research and self education. You may then see the reasons for the protections.

VinBucFan

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#4 : February 15, 2013, 03:59:22 PM

My god you really need to educate yourself.
You really have no clue. If you think that this article says it all you are very mistaken.
It was signed in to laws for a very valid reason.
Do a little research and self education. You may then see the reasons for the protections.

Haha, I said its everything you need to know because it illustrates the incredible power of the gun lobby, not that it was literally an all-encompassing treatise.

I am guessing you're pro-gun :-). I am guessing that because you just apparently registered and the first thing you did was tell anyone not pro-gun how dumb they are. :-). You'll fit right in. Welcome. 


dbucfan

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#5 : February 15, 2013, 08:38:29 PM

local police
local sheriff
state police
state bureau of investigation
federal bureau of investigation
homeland security
border patrol
national guard
ins
NOAA
and more that I am missing - just thought of a couple more - army reserve and coast guard...

you going to tell them to get rid of their weapons? you going indirect on them as well?  next time a cop shoots the wrong guy - more work for attorneys? 

and in case it is forgotten - I am not a gun owner - let alone an advocate.  but dumb is dumb for all

\"A Great Coach has to have a Patient Wife, A Loyal Dog, and a Great Quarterback. . . . but not necessarily in that order\" ~ Coach Bud Grant

VinBucFan

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#6 : February 15, 2013, 11:23:18 PM

Why would law enforcement be impacted? I must be missing something. 


dbucfan

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#7 : February 15, 2013, 11:27:08 PM

If you want to get rid of assault weapons - well that is where most of them are... and at the rate they are using up ammo to be prepared they need to be reined in before they feel they have the ability to be responsible with those weapons.

Sorry, had a sarcasm attack upon reading the reason for buying so much ammo so fast was to get a better price... odd to hear the Federal Government is buying so much anti-personnel ammo for our 'security' on one hand, and then on the other and the folks of this country are not to have such weapons. 
: February 15, 2013, 11:39:51 PM dbucfan

\"A Great Coach has to have a Patient Wife, A Loyal Dog, and a Great Quarterback. . . . but not necessarily in that order\" ~ Coach Bud Grant

VinBucFan

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#8 : February 16, 2013, 01:19:23 PM

If you want to get rid of assault weapons - well that is where most of them are...

I proposed removing assault weapons from the hands of private citizens (or confining the guns to controlled ranges) not from law enforcement . . . and that's not actually where most of the assault weapons are. I think estimate are near 2 million sold to private citizens.  Anyway, we'll get a ban that doesn't ban:

http://news.yahoo.com/gun-ban-protect-more-2-200-firearms-132222943.html


dbucfan

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#9 : February 16, 2013, 03:39:20 PM

The folks I listed are private citizens.  You've lost me.  As for the Congress and the Executive Branch - they will screw it up one way or the other. 

\"A Great Coach has to have a Patient Wife, A Loyal Dog, and a Great Quarterback. . . . but not necessarily in that order\" ~ Coach Bud Grant

VinBucFan

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#10 : February 16, 2013, 03:45:54 PM

The folks I listed are private citizens.  You've lost me.  As for the Congress and the Executive Branch - they will screw it up one way or the other.

If these entities require assault weapons to do their job then of course

local police
local sheriff
state police
state bureau of investigation
federal bureau of investigation
homeland security
border patrol
national guard

Earlier we were talking about the failed prior assault weapons band and you noted the lack of definition, the link I posted backs up your point. Two guns equally deadly, one is banned, the other is not?  Potomac Two-Step


dbucfan

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#11 : February 16, 2013, 04:49:07 PM

Yea, the definition the last time the assault weapon was created was described and indecipherable - and therefore useless.  All those lawyers and they can't figure it out - only possible explanation is the lack of want-to. 

And go through that list to come up with rationale for the need for hollow point bullets or automatic weapons.  If you aren't wondering prior to reaching NOAA - yea, the weather guys will surely raise your interest.  I see where you left them off the list - lol.  The Homeland Security folks make me shake my head - having observed their work at airports...
: February 16, 2013, 04:53:58 PM dbucfan

\"A Great Coach has to have a Patient Wife, A Loyal Dog, and a Great Quarterback. . . . but not necessarily in that order\" ~ Coach Bud Grant

VinBucFan

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#12 : February 16, 2013, 04:53:40 PM

agree, Congress working the current system in which the people are (for the most part) not paying attention to anything but headlines. Query whether the people should have to do more in a representative democracy, but oh well


dbucfan

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#13 : February 16, 2013, 04:56:28 PM

It is that 'working in the current system' that has folks on edge regarding the government.  They aren't as representative as we would like.  And the people they represent aren't as educated as one would hope. 

\"A Great Coach has to have a Patient Wife, A Loyal Dog, and a Great Quarterback. . . . but not necessarily in that order\" ~ Coach Bud Grant

VinBucFan

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#14 : February 17, 2013, 08:30:00 PM

now let's all sit back and watch it all play out :-)

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