Sad to say, but every time a mass shooting occurs, the debate over gun control gains new steam. Typically, the two sides are at each other’s throats within hours of the shootings: activists clamoring for common sense gun control measures, and gun proponents claiming their Second Amendment rights prohibit such restrictions from legislation.
But now there’s another facet to this bloody gem of a debate.
A New Insurance Policy
An insurance policy sponsored by the National Rifle Association (NRA) is about to make its way onto the market. “Carry Guard” is being billed as the “most complete self-defense insurance program and training for those who carry a gun.” It is purported to provide “clean-up costs for any covered claim resulting from the use of a legally possessed firearm, including an act of self-defense.”
Horrified opponents are calling it “murder insurance.”
This insurance will be sold by Lockton Affinity and underwritten by Chubb, the insurance magnate. According to the policy’s website, this insurance will cover upfront lawyer fees for both civilian and criminal charges of the policyholder. It will also pay for “bail, bonds, legal retainer fees, and legal referrals.” There is also an offering of “payment for the lawful replacement of your seized firearm, property restoration for your primary residence, loss of earning while in court and psychological support.”
Murder Insurance Breakdown
There are four plans available currently for murder insurance. For civil defense, there are coverage amounts ranging from $250,000 to $1 million. For criminal charges, there are offers ranging from $50,000 to $250,000. The plan’s website also includes a video of NRA spokesperson Dana Loesch. She is quoted as saying, “The truth is, right behind your firearm, your second most important self-defense protection is a rock-solid carry policy.”
Opponents say that this infuriating legal dodge will only make it easier for “stand your ground” shooters to settle and even win the lawsuits they may face, but this could also potentially embolden gun owners to shoot first and file a claim later.
The mother of Trayvon Martin has called this type of insurance the “real problem” in communities like hers. Sybrina Fulton lost her son to a self-proclaimed vigilante, who was not sentenced to any time in prison for killing Trayvon, because of Florida’s stand your ground laws.
Fulton says, “Armed intimidators roam our communities. They wave guns like children playing dress up, barking threats and upsetting the peace. They insist they should be allowed to bring their guns everywhere, into our schools, our parks, and even our churches. But their guns are not toys.”
She points out that the NRA spends millions of dollars lobbying for laws that allow its members to stand their ground. “That just makes it easier to get away with murder. Now they’re selling insurance that covers the cost.”
Words From Guns Down America
The director of Guns Down America, an activist group which calls for “dramatically fewer guns in America,” issued a statement about the NRA’s newest move. Igor Volsky said, “The reason I call it murder insurance is because if you look at the way this is marketed, it’s really sold in the context of ‘There’s a threat around every corner, dear mostly-white NRA member,’ and that threat is either a black man or a brown man or some other kind of person of color.”
No matter your stance on the Second Amendment, it seems clear that the NRA insurance offered to gun owners is more than likely a little too far off the beaten path. This seems too close to being literal insurance for a policy-holder to commit murder, and have money on hand to pay their bills and maybe get away with it. It seems fundamentally wrong.
What do you think? Let us know in the comments.