Mark Smith, CEO of gun maker Smith & Wesson, released a spirited statement this week, blaming "politicians and their lobbying partners in the media" for the "surge in violence and lawlessness."
The statement came in response to the U.S. House Oversight Committee subpoenaing Smith's company for information related to AR-15-style firearms.
Smith ripped the effort to "shift the blame to Smith & Wesson" and other firearm manufacturers amid an uptick in violence. He asserted that the "cities suffering most from violent crime" were the same cities that "promoted irresponsible, soft-on-crime policies that often treat criminals as victims and victims as criminals."
"A number of politicians and their lobbying partners in the media have recently sought to disparage Smith & Wesson," Smith said in a release on Monday. "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. 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, "It is no surprise that the cities suffering most from violent crime are the very same cities that have promoted irresponsible, soft-on-crime policies that often treat criminals as victims and victims as criminals. Many of these same cities also maintain the strictest gun laws in the nation. But rather than confront the failure of their policies, certain politicians have sought more laws restricting the 2nd Amendment rights of law-abiding citizens, while simultaneously continuing to undermine our institutions of law and order. And to suppress the truth, some now seek to prohibit firearm manufacturers and supporters of the 2nd Amendment from advertising products in a manner designed to remind law-abiding citizens that they have a Constitutional right to bear arms in defense of themselves and their families."
The CEO also noted that instead of posing a threat, Smith & Wesson provided citizens "with the means to protect themselves and their families."
"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," Smith explained. "Instead, Smith & Wesson provides these citizens with the means to protect themselves and their families."
Find the full statement here.
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