A Labor (Day) of Love: Guns, American Workers and the Second Amendment

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posted on September 6, 2020
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Labor Day 2020 is a celebration of America’s workers and their critical contributions to making this nation such a great place to live. Some of these workers are in the American shooting sports industry, which is built on the solid foundation of our Second Amendment rights.

From America’s first gunsmiths to the state-of-the-art gun- and ammunition-making facilities across the nation today, American-made firearms, ammunition and related products have provided jobs for millions of our citizens.   

America’s oldest gun maker, Remington Arms, was founded in 1816 by Eliphalet Remington, originally to build barrels. Soon afterwards, Remington opened what would become a large, sprawling factory at Ilion, New York, which quickly became an economic engine for the entire region.

Today, the Ilion facility is still operational—despite a very anti-Second Amendment political climate in that state—and as a whole the Remington Outdoor Company employs approximately 2,000 people.

Overall, according to the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) and its 2020 publication, Firearm and Ammunition Industry Economic Impact Report, “Companies in the United States that manufacture, distribute and sell firearms, ammunition and hunting equipment employ as many as 150,707 people in the country and generate an additional 181,501 jobs in supplier and ancillary industries. These include jobs in supplying goods and services to manufacturers, distributors and retailers, and those that depend on sales to workers in the firearms and ammunition industry.”

Those who work directly in the shooting sports industry can count on good pay. As NSSF noted, these workers average $55,200 a year in wages and benefits.

Those wages and benefits create a much larger economic ripple effect, too. In 2019, the shooting sports industry was responsible for as much as $60.02 billion in total economic activity across the country.

“The broader economic impact flows throughout the economy, generating business for firms seemingly unrelated to firearms,” the NSSF report found. “Real people, with real jobs, working in industries as varied as banking, retail, accounting, metal working, even in printing, all depend on the firearm and ammunition industry for their livelihood.”

The shooting sports industry also generates over $6.74 billion in taxes annually, including property, income and sales-based levies.

The top five states for shooting sport industry jobs are Texas, California, Florida, Pennsylvania and Ohio.

Unfortunately, there are threats to this vital and dynamic industry. As he has made very, very clear, Democratic Presidential candidate Joe Biden will specifically go after the American shooting sports industry and its 150,000 employees in a variety of ways. At the top of Biden’s list is doing away with the federal law known as the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act (PLCAA).

The PLCAA simply blocks lawsuits that attempt to hold firearms industry companies liable for the criminal actions of third parties who later intentionally misuse the industry’s lawfully sold products. Yet, on his election website, Biden specifically cites the PLCAA as a priority for him to get repealed, should he become President.

Imagine the impact to the automobile industry if auto makers could be held liable for the actions of drunk drivers? Or how about holding Apple and Dell responsible for the criminal acts of identity scammers using their laptops?

That’s right, bankruptcy. Which is what Biden wants for the shooting sports industry. 

Thankfully, the Second Amendment, the National Rifle Association and the millions of Americans who benefit from the work done in the shooting sports industry will continue to support and protect the Second Amendment.

It’s a labor of love that free people purchase so that they can utilize our constitutional rights.

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