As bombs were dropping in Baghdad, the U.S. Supreme Court took up the question of whether it is legitimate to consider racial identity in setting university admission policies. Meanwhile, Congress debated the budget, including an unprecedented tax cut. Largely unnoticed was the passage by the House of Representatives of the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, which exempts the makers, distributors and sellers of guns from liability for gun violence.
This bill is a response to some 30 lawsuits that have been filed against the gun industry by municipalities, including Chicago, New York, Cleveland and Detroit. Given the absence of decisive legislation on the issue, such lawsuits offer an important way to try to curb the spread of guns.