Who’s Profiting From the Las Vegas Shooting? Gun Makers

Following the horror in Las Vegas earlier this week, many people are struggling to process the tremendous, swift loss of life. And, sadly, at the time of writing, these losses continue to climb, with 59 people currently dead and more than 500 others hospitalized.

Despite the tragedy, some individuals have profited in the massacre’s wake – namely firearm and ammunition manufacturers.

Sturm Ruger saw their stocks bumped by 4 percent, while Smith & Wesson’s parent company, American Outdoor Brands, experienced a 3 percent jump. Vista Outdoor witnessed their stocks hit a six-week peak with nearly a 2 percent growth. And the manufacturer of Winchester’s official ammunition, Olin, celebrated an all-time high stock price after a 6 percent gain. These changes all came immediately after news broke of the shooting.

Unfortunately, this is not an unusual phenomenon. After the mass shooting in San Bernardino, I wrote about how firearm companies found profit in the bloodshed.

On first pass, it might seem intuitive to expect the opposite to happen — but this is the land of the Second Amendment, after all. It is also the home of the “good guy with a gun” mentality — the curious argument that the only way to stop a “bad guy with a gun” is by arming other people.

Of course, some anecdotes describe situations in which an armed citizen successfully stops a violent criminal in his tracks, but this is not the usual outcome of such incidents.

Let’s examine what is now officially the worst mass shooting in modern U.S. history, the Las Vegas massacre.

What would have happened had more people been carrying firearms? Should those people have returned fire with their handguns, blindly shooting at a hotel that was likely to have other people in it?

Handguns are notoriously inaccurate, even at a relatively close range. Thinking otherwise seems to come from fantastical action movies. But James Bond and his peers are just that — fictional.

Should all people be carrying high-powered, long distance rifles then? Perhaps rocket launchers? Clearly, the “good guy with a gun” argument quickly enters the realm of the absurd and impractical. It holds little water outside of Hollywood flicks.

No, instead, the same people who promote this fantasy have supported the lax U.S. and state gun laws that allowed the Las Vegas shooter to purchase thousands of rounds of ammunition, as well as the 23 firearms found in his hotel room and the 19 more found at his home.

Were all of this illegal, the Las Vegas shooter absolutely would not have been able to shoot over 500 people in a matter of seconds. There is little room to debate against this reality, given what investigators have discovered about the shooter’s arsenal and methods.

How many more Americans must needlessly die before we understand that human life trumps a self-righteous fantasy and the value of corporate stocks?

Photo Credit: wongaboo/Flickr


Marie W
Marie W11 months ago

Thank you

Sarah Hill
Sarah Hillabout a year ago

In most cases of these mass shootings if someone had had a gun, they could have stopped the shooter and probably minimized the carnage. In this case other than preventing it beforehand, no one could have stopped him. There is a reason most of these mass shootings happen in "gun free zones"!

Susanne R
Susanne Rabout a year ago

Why aren't we voting against all the congressmen who value campaign contributions from the NRA over saving innocent lives by passing sensible gun legislation? They're not representing the majority of the country. They're kissing the collective asses of the NRA. In the meantime, we can harass them and make their lives a living hell. Why not? They helped to ruin so many lives...

Magdalen B
Magdalen Babout a year ago


Jennifer H
Jennifer Habout a year ago

Good analysis Marianne.

Annabel Bedini
Annabel Bediniabout a year ago

JT Smith
Well said!

Past Member about a year ago

All a drawn gun demonstrates is two things:

First, you're the prime target of anyone else with a loaded gun.

Second, whether it's drawn or holstered, empty or loaded, a gun simply demonstrates fear. The fear of the person carrying the gun. This includes the American police. Other nations (e.g. Great Britain) have police forces that are not constantly armed with a firearm and are trained to do something Americans find unthinkable: they talk down the criminal with the gun and disarm them without firing a shot. They're not completely defenseless as they do have collapsible batons and tasers, but those are not their first used option. Instead, they use a far more dangerous weapon: their BRAIN.

Past Member about a year ago

The sole purpose of a gun is to maim or kill at a distance. Any argument of what does the killing demonstrates a distinct mental disconnect (not to mention a severe case of cranial-rectal inversion).

Leo C
Leo Cabout a year ago

Thank you for sharing!

Janis K
Janis Kabout a year ago

Thanks for sharing.