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Will New York Drive Local Gun Makers Out of Business?

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Image: Creative Commons.

The lyric may be about New York City, but some firearms manufacturers located in other parts of the state may find it difficult to “make it” in New York, at least after Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed the first-of-its-kind liability bills into law earlier this month. It allows the public to hold gun manufacturers liable for their products creating a public nuisance and the harm the products may cause.

The law is likely to be challenged in federal court, as it would be in direct conflict with the federal Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act that was signed into law in 2005. The legislation provided firearms manufacturers as well as licensed dealers with a high level of immunity from being held liable when crimes are committed with their products.

“The only industry in the United States of America immune from lawsuits are the gun manufacturers, thanks to George Bush and the NRA,” Gov. Cuomo said in a statement, essentially echoing a similar sentiment made by President Joe Biden earlier this year.

“This legislation will allow for a lawsuit to be brought in cases where reasonable controls and procedures are not in place, ensuring that responsible manufacturers and dealers will not be held accountable for the actions of criminal actors,” the governor’s office added.

“Plain and simple, this was federal overreach to protect the gun industry in every way possible,” New York State Attorney General Letitia James noted. “But, today, New York state took an important step to right that wrong and protect its citizens from gun violence.”

The newly signed law could be a death blow to smaller firearms manufacturers in the Empire State.

“For a small manufacturer like us, you know, we carry insurance but, you know, certainly could bankrupt a small business easily,” Mike Centola, owner of Allstar Tactical in Greece, New York, told WHEC TV.

Centola, whose business is both retail and a small manufacturer of AR-15s, said he felt that the new legislation misses the mark when it comes to holding the right people accountable for violent gun crimes. He said that it could force out-of-state firearms manufacturers to stop selling their products in New York, while driving up the costs for any local gun maker.

“I think it’s quite ridiculous because the majority of firearms used in crimes are most likely stolen,” Centola said. “It seems like instead of holding the actual criminal liable for what they did, they’re now grasping at straws to hold the manufacturer more liable.

“If I have to go and spend more money to carry a higher liability insurance, it’s gonna trickle down and end up in our prices, and prices may go up,” Centola added and questioned why firearms were singled out as a public nuisance.

“A public nuisance is ridiculous,” Centola said. “Why do we choose firearms to be a public nuisance? You know, a vehicle could be used in vehicle manslaughter, a hammer could be used, knives, you know… a fork.”

New York’s approach could be seen as a less direct way to drive manufacturers out of business, but earlier this year, some lawmakers in Massachusetts called for a complete push to ban “assault weapon manufacturing.” Such a move would impact large companies including Smith & Wesson, but also dozens of smaller gun manufacturers in the Bay State.

Peter Suciu is a Michigan-based writer who has contributed to more than four dozen magazines, newspapers and websites. He regularly writes about military small arms, and is the author of several books on military headgear including A Gallery of Military Headdress, which is available on Amazon.com.

Written By

Peter Suciu is a Michigan-based writer who has contributed to more than four dozen magazines, newspapers and websites. He is the author of several books on military headgear including A Gallery of Military Headdress, which is available on Amazon.com.

9 Comments

9 Comments

  1. Jim

    July 15, 2021 at 11:21 am

    This should be a good thing for the coming civil war. Eventually, all the guns and ammo will be made in Red states, and the Blue states will be left with sarcasm as their only weapon.

  2. Ironwing

    July 15, 2021 at 3:19 pm

    It’s not about stopping crime and never has been. It is all about disarming and controlling ALL OF US!

  3. Conradca

    July 15, 2021 at 3:40 pm

    The progressive fascists want to violate people’s civil rights by banning firearms. The real reason for this is that they are the tool that citizens need to fight the fascist utopia progressive fascists want to impose on the USA.

  4. Clifford Y Williams

    July 15, 2021 at 4:33 pm

    As usual Democrats just Lie!

    What other companies are immune from lawsuits! Vaccine manufacturers. You cannot sue them for any claim regarding thier vaccines!

  5. Domestic

    July 15, 2021 at 11:57 pm

    Bring those businesses to Idaho. We already have the ammo businesses.

  6. Jack Kennedy

    July 16, 2021 at 12:13 am

    Can’t wait to sue gm for the car that st hussiens dreamer hit me with …..

    and tell me again why any company would locate in new yawk…..

  7. Johnny

    July 16, 2021 at 6:18 am

    There should be a class-action lawsuit against all the local/state governments who defunded their police presence and made it harder for the law-abiding to defend themselves with firearms.

    Free states should actively recruit these businesses away from leftist hellholes like NY, NJ, MA, and CA.

  8. Pete Orsi

    July 20, 2021 at 8:56 am

    Come to New Hampshire

  9. Mario DeLosa

    July 26, 2021 at 9:00 am

    Ah, the most entitled discourse in American politics. “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” I notice that the “gun rights” advocates routinely ignore the “well regulated” part, the “militia” part (hint, the militia is the National Guard), or that “people” is plural. Sorry boys and girls, it is not an individual right and Scalia blew it when he overturned 200 plus years of precedent, although even he admitted that the 2nd did not imply a free for all. Did this piss you off? Dial 1-800-cry-baby, extension wah!

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