Guns and Gear

Smith & Wesson Rejects Push By Anti-Second Amendment Shareholders

REUTERS/Jim Young/File Photo

Derek Hunter Contributor
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The latest strategy of gun control activists is to force gun manufacturers “to consider their social impact” by buying stock in those companies and mobilizing shareholders to demand they study the concept.

The group called Adrian Dominican Sisters, led by a nun named Sister Judy Byron, is part of the Northwest Coalition for Responsible Investments, an anti-Second Amendment activist group. Their latest target was American Outdoor Brands Corporation (AOBC), which owns Smith & Wesson. The company was forced to do a study, which was released late Friday, but the results likely won’t make the nuns happy.

In their report, AOBC defended itself against critics of the Second Amendment, writing, “Specific terms sometimes are used to craft a narrative in support of those agendas. For example, phrases such as ‘gun violence’ are used to create a perception that the presence of a gun, in itself, somehow creates the conditions for violence.”

Moreover, the report takes swipes at liberal groups trying to tarnish the company’s reputation and bottom line. (RELATED: U.S. Supreme Court Takes Second Amendment Challenge To A Gun Control Law)

“The Company’s reputation as a strong defender of the Second Amendment is not worth risking for a vague goal of improving the Company’s reputation among non-customers or special interest groups with an anti-Second Amendment agenda,” the report reads.

AOBC is one of two firearm manufacturers the activists bought stock in for the expressed purpose of forcing a “dialogue with the companies about what they are doing to ensure the safety of children and communities whose lives may be at risk because of their products.”

One of the areas the activist nuns wanted addressed was the idea of “smart guns,” weapons that can only be fired by one user. AOBC called this “flawed technology” in the report, saying they would continue to monitor its development.

“AOBC does not believe that current authorized user or ‘smart gun’ technology is reliable, commercially viable, or has any significant consumer demand,” the report read. (RELATED: House To Move Forward With Gun Control Proposals)

AOBC made a point of dismissing the activist shareholders as “a small percentage of our shareholders,” in the report, adding, “Despite the fact that the Resolution was put forward by parties whose interests were not aligned with those of our customers, or those of our shareholders seeking true risk mitigation and value creation, the report represents our good faith effort and investment of company resources.”

In their conclusion, AOBC was unequivocal that it would not try to win over anti-Second Amendment activists, saying, “efforts to improve the Company’s reputation among its critics would not only be futile but would hurt the Company’s business.”

For their part, the Northwest Coalition for Responsible Investments remains undeterred. Their website actively calls for ending “the sale, production, design or conversion of military style semi-automatic assault weapons and associated accessories and components, including high capacity magazines, for use by civilians” while calling on banks to “prohibit lending or the use of credit cards/payment systems to gun manufacturers that sell, produce or design the aforementioned weapons or ammunition.”

For its part, AOBC has no plans to deviate from their support for Second Amendment rights. In a statement, the company said the strength of their “business and its reputation are rooted in Smith & Wesson being a strong defender of the Second Amendment. Actions which seek the approval of non-customers or anti-gun groups would not only be futile, they would damage AOBC’s business and reputation.”