Hello, readers. Following a wave of corporate pressure, another outdoors company is mulling changes to its firearms policy. Meanwhile, the chairman of one of the country’s most vocal gun groups pressures President Donald Trump to leave bump stocks alone. Those stories and more, below.
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Vista Outdoor may stop making guns. The company’s CEO said Tuesday that it is “potentially” offloading its gun-manufacturing business, but will continue to make and sell ammunition. The change comes as retailers like Dick’s Sporting Goods and L.L. Bean have limited their firearm offerings following the Parkland shooting. In March, national outdoor retailer REI suspended its relationship with Vista Outdoor due to its ownership of the gun manufacturer Savage Arms. Many financial institutions have also announced that they would impose conditions on clients that make or sell firearms.
Gun Owners of America to President Trump: reconsider bump stock regulations. In a letter, GOA chairman Tim Macy says the Justice Department’s proposed ban would be a “radical change” that infringes on the Second Amendment. “Gun owners were called paranoid for thinking President Obama was coming for their guns — yet you have now announced that you quite literally are coming for their guns,” he writes.
The Florida county home to Parkland is putting the state’s new red flag law to use. Since the law was enacted on March 9, law enforcement in Broward County have obtained more court orders to remove guns from private citizens – 34 in all — than any other county in the state.
Chicago records another monthly drop in gun violence. Shootings were down in April for the 14th consecutive month, according to newly released numbers from the Chicago Police Department. Since January, Chicago has seen a 22% drop in murders and a 27% decrease in shootings, compared to the same period last year.
Pediatricians are launching a program to keep kids safe from shootings. The American Academy of Pediatricians has formed the Gun Safety and Injury Prevention Research Initiative to study evidence-based solutions to the gun violence crisis. In a statement, the AAP says it was inspired by student activism after Parkland. Related: A group of nurses take a strong stand on gun reform. “The Constitution needs to be amended to protect the lives of our patients,” they write in an editorial for The Hill.
Governor Andrew Cuomo of New York signed legislation to keep guns away from domestic abusers. The new law requires that people convicted of domestic abuse surrender all firearms, not just handguns.
A New York state senator wants to make information about gun trafficking publicly available. The bill that would require quarterly reports detailing where guns used in crimes came from, whether they were bought by the perpetrator, and whether the perpetrator was licensed. New Jersey is starting a similar program this month. In both states, most crime guns are brought in from other states. By making data about which states are supplying the most guns, the programs could pressure net exporters of crime guns to make changes to their gun laws.
A poll finds concerns about gun violence gradually returning to their baseline. Still, the percentage of Americans who believe it’s politically possible to pass gun laws remains higher than it was after the Las Vegas and Sutherland Springs massacres, according to a HuffPost and YouGov survey.
Teen anti-violence activists in Chicago see legislative action on school security. A proposal in the Illinois legislature would require that police officers in Chicago Public Schools receive youth-specific training. A separate measure would provide state grants for schools to hire non-law enforcement staffers, like mental health counselors. Both of the proposals were among the demands made by Chicago teens during the school walkouts in March and April.
In Newark, cops and community members share stories of trauma. The Newark Police Department has been under federal monitoring since a 2014 investigation found widespread abuse. One change it’s made: the implementation of a 15-hour training program in which police officers and community residents come together to discuss psychological scars.
NEW FROM THE TRACE
Some students will be walking out of class again today — this time in defense of firearms. Will Riley, a New Mexico high school senior, is the leader of Stand for the Second, a nationwide walkout that is the inverse of the widespread student protests for gun reform on March 14 and April 20.
Beginning at 10 a.m. local time, students are encouraged to walk out of their classrooms and observe 16 minutes of silence. The goal is to honor those whose lives have been saved by defensive gun use, Riley told The Trace. “Even if it turns out that we have less people than we might want, I want to show that we need to have a conversation about this before we act,” he said.
Trace contributor Kerry Shaw talked to Riley about his plans and what he hopes to accomplish. Read her post here.