In one of the worst, most dangerous court rulings seen for some time, the Connecticut Supreme Court has ruled that the families of victims of the Sandy Hook school shooting can sue gunmaker Remington because the company’s product was used in the 2012 school shooting.
On Thursday the state’s high court reversed a lower court’s ruling that the families could not sue Remington because its product was used in the shooting. In a close 4-3 ruling, the court allowed the families to carry on with a lawsuit against the gunmaker.
“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,” Justice Richard Palmer wrote for the majority according to the Washington times.
The ruling goes against a 2005 ruling that generally prevents gun makers from being sued in wrongful death lawsuits.
Indeed, the 2005 ruling has been cited before. According to the Times:
In 2016, a state superior court judge had cited the 2005 law, known as the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, in dismissing the Sandy Hook case.
The court did maintain that some of the victims suing Remington could not go through with every aspect of their suit.
On Thursday, the justices ruled that while the lower court was correct in dismissing many of the plaintiffs’ claims in the wrongful death lawsuit, the plaintiffs should be allowed to proceed with arguments on whether Remington’s marketing of the weapon violated state trade practices.
“It falls to a jury to decide whether the promotional schemes alleged in the present case rise to the level of illegal trade practices and whether fault for the tragedy can be laid at their feet,” Justice Palmer said
But everything about this is dangerous.
It would open the door for every single manufacturer of every product under the sun to be sued when a product is misused or when someone causes death or harm.
This is very dangerous. How long could society last if everyone could be sued at every turn for every perceived wrong that someone else perpetrated?
A ruling like this would not just destroy the Second Amendment, it would destroy our entire society by making every business uncertain that they won’t be sued at the drop of a hat.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.