After months of silence, the Connecticut Supreme Court on Thursday reinstated a wrongful death lawsuit filed by the families of nine victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting against Remington Arms, the manufacturer of the rifle used in the shooting. The suit is a high-stakes challenge to gun companies, which have rarely been held liable for crimes committed with their products, and could mark a new front in the battle over gun regulations and corporate accountability.
The Democratic-controlled House on Wednesday approved a measure requiring federal background checks for all firearms sales and transfers, the first major gun control legislation considered by Congress in nearly 25 years. Democrats called the 240-190 vote a major step to end the gun lobby’s grip on Washington and begin to address an epidemic of gun violence, including 17 people who were killed at a Florida high school last year.
The Trump administration has fulfilled its promise to ban bump stocks which let rifles fire like machine guns. White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders announced the final date to destroy or turn in the devices is March 21, 2019. The push to ban bump stocks came following mass shootings in October 2017 and February 2018.
US District Court Judge Robert Lasnik granted a temporary restraining order on Tuesday night blocking the public availability of blueprints providing instructions for making plastic guns using 3D printers. Gun-rights activist Cody Wilson, who planned the Wednesday release, is fighting to post the blueprints, citing First Amendment rights.
Following the Parkland, Florida school shooting, YouTube announced tightened restrictions on firearm videos and the ban on videos promoting construction or sale of firearms and accessories. The new policy should go into effect next month. Citigroup is the first Wall Street bank to take a stance with restrictions on firearms sales by its business customers.
Following President Trump’s promise to work for improved gun control measures after the Florida High School shooting, he retreated, Monday, instead embracing the agenda of the National Rifle Association. Trump now supports the NRA’s plan for small improvements to the background check system and arming ‘highly trained expert teachers’ with concealed weapons.
President Trump announced, Tuesday, he has signed an order directing Attorney General Jeff Sessions to propose regulations to ban bump stocks and other devices that turn semi-automatic guns into ‘machine guns.’ The proposal comes in the aftermath of the Florida school shooting and last year’s Las Vegas concert attack, where a bump-stock device was used.
Following last week’s Florida school shooting, President Trump is ‘supportive of efforts to improve the federal background check system,’ according to White House press secretary Sarah Sanders. Surviving students called for a march on Washington to demand gun control reform. Named ‘March for Our Lives,’ the event will happen across the US on March 24th.
The Florida school shooting may be a stronger catalyst for change than previous tragedies, as students continue pushing for gun reform in the shooting’s aftermath. As President Trump suggested teachers be armed with firearms to prevent shootings, students demanded restrictions of rifle sales, while defending their collective expression against right-wing media who called them actors.
Officials from New York, Philadelphia, and San Francisco filed a lawsuit against the Defense Department for failure to report criminal convictions in the military justice system to the Federal Bureau of Investigation and its national gun background check database. The suit requires the Pentagon to adhere to federal court monitoring of compliance with reporting laws.