Son Of Couple Murdered In Pittsburgh Synagogue Sues NRA for Rhetoric

In this Oct. 27, 2018 photo, Rabbi Eli Wilansky lights a candle after a mass shooting at Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh's Squirrel Hill neighborhood. The three congregations sharing space at the Tree of Life synagogue relocated after an anti-Semitic gunman killed 11 worshippers. In March 2020, the congregations dispersed from their new locations due to the coronavirus pandemic and switched to virtual services. (Steph Chamber/Pittsburgh Post-Gazette via AP)

The son of a couple killed in a Pittsburgh synagogue attack that killed 11 worshippers is suing the National Rifle Association, arguing the group’s inflammatory rhetoric led to the violence.

Marc Simon, the son of Sylvan and Bernice Simon, filed the wrongful death lawsuit Thursday in Allegheny County Common Pleas Court against the NRA, the gunmaker Colt’s Manufacturing Co., and accused shooter, Robert Bowers, news outlets reported. Colt manufactured the AR-15 semi-automatic rifle allegedly used by Bowers.

A fourth defendant is the unknown business that sold Bowers the gun.

Bowers is charged with killing 11 congregants at the Tree of Life synagogue in the deadliest attack on Jews in U.S. history. Police said the former truck driver expressed hatred of Jews during and after the October 2018 rampage.

“Bowers was not born fearing and hating Jews,” the suit claims. “The gun lobby taught him to do that.”

Bowers has pleaded not guilty. No trial date has been set, and prosecutors are seeking the death penalty.

The plaintiff argues gun lobbyists like the NRA radicalized people with “mendacious white supremacist conspiracy theories.” The lawsuit also says Colt could have prevented the AR-15 from “bump firing,” or using a modification that allows the rifle to fire more rapidly.

An NRA spokesperson declined comment on the lawsuit. The group filed for bankruptcy last week, and the claims against them in Simon’s lawsuit will be stayed as a result of the group’s reorganizing.

Colt did not respond to request for comment. Besides a wrongful death claim, the complaint accuses Colt of product liability and says the gun is more akin to a military-style weapon than a civilian product.



  1. And, just like that, my sympathy for him has run out. By doing this he shows himself to be almost as bad a person as Bowers yimach shemo himself. He is just as hate-filled and irrational, and just as criminal. If there were any justice the first judge to look at this would throw both him and his lawyer in a cell for contempt.

    The NRA has NEVER IN ITS HISTORY EVER expressed any antisemitic or white supremacist idea. Everyone knows this. He is accusing them of one of the worst things one can accuse anyone of in today’s society. Very well, I accuse Marc Simon of having murdered five people himself. I have as much evidence for it as he does against the NRA.

    And the suit against Colt is explicitly barred by federal law. It is against the law to hold a gun manufacturer liable for crimes committed with its product. Federal law says that they are not liable, just as car or computer makers are not liable for crimes committed with their products. Manufacturers are only liable if harm resulted from their products being defective and malfunctioning.

    The same applies to the gun store. They did nothing wrong, just like the grocery that sold matches to someone who then set a fire. Suing them is wicked and evil and this Marc Simon should burn in gehenom for it.

  2. I have personally been to numerous gun shows and even the NRA convention (which had tens of thousands of attendees), and not ONCE have I had an anti-semitic experience. In fact, I have been to shuls that didn’t like yidden as much as the people I meet at gun shows.

  3. MRN, the suit against the manufacturer is EXPLICITLY BARRED by federal law. The treasonous anti-gun lobby developed a strategy of deliberately mounting frivolous lawsuits against gun manufacturers just to bankrupt them with the cost of defending them, so Congress had to act to protect them. Since all such suits are BY DEFINITION frivolous, Congress banned courts from even hearing them.

    Unfortunately some scofflaw judges ignore this and hear such cases anyway, and the manufacturers have to spend money they can ill afford to defend themselves anyway. Those judges should be hung from a lamppost by their heels.