Recently, the New York Times touted a report claiming that “gun safety advocates” were forcing Ruger to adopt their policies and measures. Ruger’s CEO, Chris Killoy, fired back with a statement that all gun owners should hear… and repeat. Ruger’s quote, per the New York Times, flatly stated that Ruger has no intention to “adopt misguided principles by groups that do not own guns and does not understand guns.”
According to the Times, the group behind this latest push was “a coalition of religious women and health care networks” trying to force the company to “detail its plans to monitor violence associated with their guns and develop safer products.” The Times was not alone in its coverage.
Have you ever noticed how gun control activists are continually pushing for “common sense gun control” or “safer guns,” but never actually have a specific definition of what those entail? At best, they have defined misguided future technologies such as smart guns, but little more.
The Times article cites the advocacy groups Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary of Marylhurst, Ore. and Catholic Health Initiatives. Both groups invested in shares of Ruger stock, with the intention of having a voice as stockholders to “hold gun manufacturers accountable for the safety of their products.”
Initially, at least, the groups had some early success by convincing other shareholders at the meeting of the need to “produce a report by February that addresses how it tracks violence associated with its firearms, what kind of research it is conducting related to so-called smart gun technology (such as using thumbprint readers, like those used on smartphones) and its assessment of the risks that gun-related crimes pose to the company’s reputation and finances,” the Times reported.
In an email exchange with Ruger, CFL received a copy of the company’s statement about this and it is direct:
“Please understand that Ruger was obligated by applicable law to include a shareholder’s activist resolution with its proxy materials for a shareholder vote. With its passage, the proposal requires Ruger to prepare a report. That’s it. A report. What the proposal does not do … and cannot do … is force us to change our business, which is lawful and constitutionally protected. What it does not do … and cannot do … is force us to adopt misguided principles created by groups who do not own guns, know nothing about our business, and frankly would rather see us out of business.
“As our CEO explained, ‘we are Americans who work together to produce rugged, reliable, innovative, and affordable firearms for responsible citizens. We are staunch supporters of the Second Amendment not because we make firearms, but because we cherish the rights conferred by it. We understand the importance of those rights and, as importantly, recognize that allowing our constitutionally protected freedoms to be eroded for the sake of political expediency is the wrong approach for our Company, for our industry, for our customers, and for our country. We are arms makers for responsible citizens, and I want to assure our long-term shareholders and loyal customers that we have no intention of changing that.’”
Rightfully, Ruger wants to set the record straight. While the spin from some media, much of which has been proven to have an anti-gun agenda, makes it sound as if this is a win for gun control advocates, that could not be further from the truth. Ruger must create reports or surveys as required by law, but it does not have to change its course or commitment to the Second Amendment—and Chris Killoy’s is a good first step.