Dems to FTC: ‘Investigate Gun Industry’ for ‘Deceptive Ad Practices’

Dems to FTC: ‘Investigate Gun Industry’ for ‘Deceptive Ad Practices’

Canik iStock 1182677191
Senators Richard Blumenthal and Ed Markey led a group of Democrat senators in a letter to the Federal Trade Commission, demanding an investigation of firearm industry advertising practices. IMG iStock-1182677191

U.S.A. –-( In a four-page letter to the Federal Trade Commission this week, a dozen anti-gun Democrat senators are demanding an investigation of “unfair and deceptive advertising practices used by the firearms industry,” alleging gun makers have been misleading consumers about safety as they “target children and teenagers.”

Led by Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) and Edward J. Markey (D-MA), the group contends, “For decades, the firearms industry has marketed firearms to consumers as a safe and proven product to protect themselves and their homes. Consumers should be informed of all the substantial and unavoidable risks that come with firearm ownership, possession, and use, and the FTC is in the best position to make
sure that the firearms industry tells them—and tells them accurately.”

However, a check of the websites of several different firearms manufacturers suggests quite the opposite. For example, the Smith & Wesson website notes, “Safe and secure storage of your firearm is one of your most important responsibilities. It is a full-time responsibility. You must always secure your firearm and ammunition separately so that they are not accessible to children or other unauthorized persons.”

Rival Colt Firearms notes on its website, “Colt is proud to be a supporter of Project ChildSafe® and the “Own It? Respect It. Secure It.” initiative. Remember to store your firearms responsibly when not in use! For more information, visit” There is a link to a brochure on Firearms Responsibility in the Home. 

And Sig Sauer’s owner’s manuals carry this notification: “The warnings in this operators manual are extremely important. By understanding the dangers inherent in the use of any firearm, and by taking the precautions described in this manual, you can experience a high level of safety in the use of your firearm. Failure to heed any of these warnings may result in serious injury or death to you or others, as well as severe damage to the firearm or other property.”

Alan Gottlieb, founder and executive vice president of the Second Amendment Foundation, commented via email, “Who the FTC should be going after is Democrat Senators and other politicians who make and run false statements and ads about gun owners and the Second Amendment. Talking about unfair and deceptive acts and practices these gun prohibition politicians are the real danger to freedom in our country.”

Blumenthal and Markey were joined by perennial Senate anti-gunners Christopher Murphy, Dick Durbin, Amy Klobuchar, Sheldon Whitehouse, Cory Booker, Dianne Feinstein, Kirsten Gillibrand, Alex Padilla, Elizabeth Warren and Jack Reed.

In their letter, the senators assert, “The rare instances in which a gun owner successfully uses a firearm for self-defense are far outweighed by the vastly higher number of injuries and deaths for the owners, family members, and other cohabitants. In fact, research indicates that for each instance in which a firearm in the home is used successfully in self-defense, there are 11 attempted or completed firearm suicides, seven criminal assaults or homicides involving a firearm, and four unintentional shootings.

However, writing at Reason Sept. 9, Senior Editor Jacob Sullum reported, “The largest and most comprehensive survey of American gun owners ever conducted suggests that they use firearms in self-defense about 1.7 million times a year. It also confirms that AR-15-style rifles and magazines that hold more than 10 rounds, frequent targets of gun control legislation, are in common use for lawful purposes, which the Supreme Court has said is the test for arms covered by the Second Amendment.”

The reference to AR-15-style rifles is significant because Blumenthal and his colleagues specifically criticize Daniel Defense advertising, claiming the company does this “in order to market weapons of war to the general public, and specifically targets and tailors its advertisements to children and teenagers with invocations of and references to popular first-person shooter video games like Call of Duty—a game reportedly played by the 18-year-old shooter in Uvalde.”

As other gun prohibitionists have been doing in recent times, the Blumenthal group’s letter subliminally attempts to perpetuate the argument that modern semiautomatic sporting rifles are “weapons of war.”

The letter might, itself, be misleading where the senators claim, “in February 2022, the families of nine victims murdered at Sandy Hook Elementary School secured a settlement against Remington Arms—the manufacturer of the firearm used to kill 20 children and six educators in Newtown, Connecticut almost 10 years ago—for its own marketing tactics.”

But Ammoland News effectively put the lie to this portrayal in a Feb. 17, 2022 report in which it was noted at the time of the settlement, “Remington Outdoor Company (ROC) no longer exists as a business entity.”

That settlement, the report explained, “was reached with the insurance companies that held policies with the now-defunct company, which essentially dissolved when various components of ROC were sold at auction in September 2020.

It should be noted this letter comes as the midterm election campaign season is ramping up, providing a possible “distraction issue” for Democrats, who have been reluctant to run on the economy, international affairs, the burgeoning deficit or even the price of gasoline.


About Dave Workman

Dave Workman is a senior editor at and Liberty Park Press, author of multiple books on the Right to Keep & Bear Arms, and formerly an NRA-certified firearms instructor.

Dave Workman