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Joining Cabela’s and other modern sporting rifle sellers, Smith & Wesson has notified Reed Exhibitions that they shan’t be attending the Eastern Sports and Outdoor Show after the promoter instituted a no scary black rifle policy. Think of Smith’s pullout as exhibitus interruptus brought on by an acute case of Second Amendment support. Not to mention some hard-earned experience. S&W’s press release after the jump . . .

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (January 22, 2013) — Smith & Wesson, a U.S. based leader in firearm manufacturing and design, today announced that the Company will not attend nor will it support or participate in the 2013 Eastern Sports and Outdoor Show in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.  The announcement comes after the decision of show management company, Reed Exhibitions, to prohibit the display of modern sporting rifles in this year’s event.

James Debney, President and CEO of Smith & Wesson, said, “As a market leader in the firearm industry and an iconic brand that spans 160 years of American history, we believe it is important to make our position perfectly clear:  We support the Second Amendment and the rights of our law-abiding customers to purchase these and all legal firearms.  Therefore, we are unable to support any organization or event that prohibits legal firearms, or otherwise restricts a citizen’s lawful and constitutional rights.”

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    • Most pople don’t understand what S&W did in 2000 when they sold out to clinton. S&W is/was a small publicly traded company, Small compared to large Ameican companies. A british company had purchased them. S&W amounted to less than 3% of the british company total assets and when the clinton admin started putting firearms companies under pressure the controling company made S&W kiss up to clinton, to protect their new purchase. Then shortly after that they sold S&W. The good people of S&W had no say in any of these. The fact is All of the sporting firearms companies in the U.S if combined would not be large enough to be in te fortune 500.

  1. The guys running the Eastern Sports & Outdoor show must be flipping out.

    Way to shoot themselves in the foot.

    It will be interesting if they are around next year and what their policy will be for the next exhibition.

  2. Smith and Wesson and Ruger are unequivocally pro-2A! You would think they were always that way, being gun manufacturers and all, but that wasn’t always the case. Regardless, welcome to the fold. It would be such a *shame* if manufacturers banded together to disarm New York LEOs in protest of their ridiculous AWB.

    • Don’t hold your breath. They would rather lose money than ever admit they were wrong. Good luck finding any sportsman among the anti’s.

  3. Good. I was a pup when the last AWB made a go, so I didn’t have quite the same feeling of betrayal you older guys did. I’m glad they and Ruger are on the right side of the fight this time, and I’ll continue to support them as long as they support us.

  4. Now they need to get rid of the biggest legacy of their big mistake, the internal lock on their revolvers, so I could start buying them again.

    • @Steve, S&W announced last year that they were eliminating the internal locks on all their firearms. The only reason they were there in the first place is because the lockmaker (Saf-T Hammer) bought S&W.

      • FYI, Apex Tactical did some awesome trigger work for me on two S&W revolvers. I asked them to disable the locks which they did. No plug needed since that part stays put. Just one internal part removed so I can putit back if I’m ever inclined.

  5. You have to remember that the last time, a British company owned and controlled Smith and Wesson, when they sold out to Clinton and the gun grabbers. It cost the British Holding Company about a billion plus dollars, if I remember correctly, they sold Smith and Wesson for about 10 cents on the dollar for what they had invested to modernize the equipment, etc. I remember they sold the company for about 10 million. It was so cheap that I even thought about buying it.

      • Right Ralph, buuuuut… Bill Ruger was old-school and at that time, Ruger didn’t make any rifles with > 10 round magazines, nor any AR-like rifle. The brew-haha back then was dealers selling high-cap mags for Mini-14’s, 10/22’s and the like. Bill thought he could get the Clinton administration off his back by saying “OK, dealers, quit selling high-cap mags for my guns…” and it blew up in his face.

        Most all gun makers back then were in New England, and I need not ‘splain the prevailing attitude of the majority to you, being that you live in the area.

        Where S&W and Ruger went very far wrong was that they forgot there’s quite a bunch of people west of the Hudson River… and we don’t have the sort of attitude and worldview that the people of New England do.

  6. You might consider writing NSSF to suggest that they find a new manager for the SHOT show. I emailed them a few days ago. No response, but I don’t expect one.

    Cabela, on the other hand, got back to me within 24 hours thanking me for contacting them when they pulled out. They also thanked me for my business and said they’d pass my comments on to corporate.


  7. Reed Exhibitions is a very large and aggressive company and are always hungry for $ as trade shows began to suffer post 911 when global attendances in general went to hell.
    Many of us are in positions where we may handle the marketing of our employers stuff, and I personally will be sure to tell Reed to bite me when they come begging me to re-book for the following years booth at the the next trade show I exhibit, so on the last day, when they skulk around trying to sell me space, I can say because I am a gun owner and they f’d me off I will not give them my business. Their shows mostly suck anyways, and marketing $ are better spent elsewhere.

    • THIS.

      This is where gun owners and RKBA people will go the furthest – by reminding people in other spheres of interaction that we don’t forget and don’t forgive those who tried to, or did, sell our rights down the river.

  8. Speaking of New York, have any manufacturers announced that they will no longer be supplying LEOs in the state?

  9. It would be wonderful if about 1000 to 2000 citizens protested outside the show with AR-15s and AK-47s strapped to their backs — assuming open carry of rifles is lawful outside the venue. If open carry is not optional, then 1000 to 2000 citizens carrying signs with pictures of the AR-15 or AK-47 that they own would be almost as good at getting the point across.

    Come to think of it, the same protest at all Dicks Sporting Goods stores across the U.S. on a predetermined date would also be exciting.

  10. S&W is a class act & make some superb firearms. I just bought an old 4516 & they are sending me free grips & when I send in the mag they will exchange it for free with an updated one. Even they have a slight way to go from Alessi Holsters though, I ordered a $240.00 holster & they sent it right out without payment & just said when I get a chance send a check & this was my first purchase from them, Randy

  11. Makes me even more glad I bought my M&P15 MOE mid a couple months back. Great rifle, and this announcement makes me more likely to pick up an M&P pistol in the future.

    • The M&P is a great handgun so you wont be disappointed there. This makes me glad I supported them with my business as well, and will continue to support them in the future.

  12. They still have Uncle Ted’s Spirit of the Wild listed as an exhibitor. He probably will ACTUALLY tell them to FOAD. In his public statement.

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