New York Mayor Eric Adams (D) has taken aim at gun manufacturers following his own inability to get a handle on his city’s rampant crime, which has caused a “ripple effect” across the nation.
This week, Adams’ issued remarks to the National Press Club on the media’s role in holding the gun industry “accountable” for violent crime. In his remarks, Adams claimed that the rise of crime stemmed from “greed” from gun manufacturers, who launched an “aggressive marketing” technique to reach consumers “who have no business owning a gun,” such as minors, criminals and abusers. He claimed that the country has “paid the price in blood” as a result of this.
Their plan succeeded beyond our wildest nightmares. The gun industry rakes in nine billion dollars a year. But America has paid the price in blood. The cost is more gun violence on our streets and in our homes. Increased hate crimes, deadlier domestic violence, higher rates of suicide. More fallen officers. More fearful elders. And more school shootings.
Adams continued, blaming the gun manufacturers – not violent criminals – for the rise of bloodshed in New York and beyond. He claimed that guns are sold “without any concern” over where they will end up and that “the men behind the market” are to blame for the deaths of those who are killed by gun violence.
When a gun crime is committed, we need the name of the gun and how that gun was obtained by the shooter. Who looked the other way. Where it was bought and who profited from that sale. Following the money is how you get to the heart of the story.
Gun violence is no exception.
Guns don’t magically appear in the hands of shooters. They don’t fall from the sky or grow on trees. Guns are made and marketed with the express purpose of generating profit. Guns are sold without any concern for where they may end up. Guns cause over 40 thousand deaths a year in America. And gun violence is the leading cause of death among American children. And at every turn, the gun companies spread misinformation and deflect blame. I have often spoken about the river of violence and the sources that feed it. We must go upstream in this river of violence. We must find the sources and dam each and every one up. That means investigating the supply chain, the players, the men behind the market. The gun manufacturers and distributors and their enablers must named and shamed. Every CEO, every board member, every significant investor should have their name associated with the story of gun violence in America.
It is a travesty that we know the places where our citizens were murdered, but not the names of the CEOs who approved the marketing of the weapons that were used to kill them.
Adams’ remarks this week are the latest in his series of attacks demonizing gun manufacturers for the rise of crime in his city, which he vowed on the campaign trail to get a handle on.
In June, the mayor’s attacks against gun manufacturers escalated after the United States Supreme Court held that “proper-cause requirement” outlined in New York’s gun carrying laws “[violated] the Fourteenth Amendment by preventing law-abiding citizens with ordinary self-defense needs from exercising their Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms in public for self-defense,” which Townhall covered.
In the weeks following the ruling, New York Gov. Kathy Hochul (D) strengthened the state’s gun laws. And, Adams met with leaders from other high-crime cities and “hinted” that legal action against certain gun manufacturers could be “forthcoming.” Reportedly, Glock, Taurus, Smith & Wesson, Ruger and Polymer8o produced more than half of the guns used in crimes in New York and 11 other major U.S. cities, the New York Daily News reported.
In response, Smith & Wesson put out a lengthy statement responding to these attacks on gun manufacturers and the Second Amendment. In the statement, President and CEO Mark Smith pointed out that prosecutors and lawmakers who refuse to hold criminals accountable for their actions are to blame.
“A number of politicians and their lobbying partners in the media have recently sought to disparage Smith & Wesson. Some have had the audacity to suggest that after they have vilified, undermined and defunded law enforcement for years, supported prosecutors who refuse to hold criminals accountable for their actions, overseen the decay of our country’s mental health infrastructure, and generally promoted a culture of lawlessness, Smith & Wesson and other firearm manufacturers are somehow responsible for the crime wave that has predictably resulted from these destructive policies,” President and CEO Mark Smith said.
“But they are the ones to blame for the surge in violence and lawlessness, and they seek to avoid any responsibility for the crisis of violence they have created by attempting to shift the blame to Smith & Wesson, other firearm manufacturers and law abiding gun owners,” he continued.
“To be clear, a Smith & Wesson firearm has never broken into a home; a Smith & Wesson firearm has never assaulted a woman out for a late-night run in the city; a Smith & Wesson firearm has never carjacked an unsuspecting driver stopped at a traffic light. Instead, Smith & Wesson provides these citizens with the means to protect themselves and their families…We will continue to work alongside law enforcement, community leaders and lawmakers who are genuinely interested in creating safe neighborhoods. We will engage those who genuinely seek productive discussions, not a means of scoring political points. We will continue informing law-abiding citizens that they have a Constitutionally-protected right to defend themselves and their families. We will never back down in our defense of the 2nd Amendment.”
This month, New York Post reported that Adams vowed to begin going door-to-door as part of background check requirements on potential gun permit holders. Reportedly, NYPD Commissioner Keechant Sewell said the department tracked a 54 percent increase in carrying license applications since June 1.
“It is really about using the good, old-fashioned methods of doing investigation,” Adams said In an interview on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”
The Post added that permit applicants will require individuals to sit down for an in-person interview, submit four character references and list their former and current social media accounts spanning the last three years, as well as disclosing the names of their spouse and other adults living in their home before obtaining a permit. Going forward, permit renewals will be required every three years rather than five.
A poll published by the Siena College Research Institute in June found that 70 percent of New Yorkers feel less safe than they did before the pandemic. Only 3 percent said they feel safer than before the pandemic. Seventy-six percent said they were concerned that they would be a victim of a violent crime.
In addition, only 29 percent of respondents in the survey said they think Democratic Mayor Eric Adams is doing an "excellent or good job" in office. Sixty-four percent said that Adams is doing "only a fair or poor job."
"On three specific issues – fighting crime, addressing homelessness, and safety at Rikers Island – New Yorkers give the mayor even worse grades," the poll write-up said. At least 59 percent of respondents gave Adams a negative rating on these issues, though he put safety at the forefront of his campaign promises.