Local News

National gun control debate personal for NC town

Posted December 19, 2012

— The national debate over assault rifles in light of the Newtown, Conn., massacre has become personal for the Rockingham County town of Madison, which is north of Greensboro.

The community of about 2,200 citizens is headquarters for Freedom Group International, which designs, manufactures and sells firearms under the Remington and Bushmaster names.

The AR-15 used in last Friday's shooting of 27 people, including 20 children, is made by the company.

That has residents talking.

"I feel so bad for those children and those families, but I don't blame the guns either," said Carol Rorrer, whose son works at Freedom Group. "The guns are just a tiny part of it."

Rorrer and her husband, Robert, believe more focus should be on reforming the mental health system rather than the gunmaker.

"I have mixed feelings about it," Robert Rorrer said. "It looks to me like they're blaming the gun instead of other things. Guns don't kill people. People kill people."

Freedom Group sold 1.1 million rifles and shotguns last year, along with 2 billion rounds of ammunition. Its customers include law enforcement and military agencies, as well as retailers that serve hunters and gun enthusiasts.

On Tuesday, Cerberus Capital Management, the company's majority investor, announced that it plans to the sell its stake to distance itself from the controversy.

The move has residents concerned.

"The company of Remington means a whole lot to this town," said Roderick Manuel. "There's probably 300 to 400 employees around here."

WRAL News contacted Freedom Group for an interview Tuesday, but the company declined.


This story is closed for comments.

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  • belovedsparrow Dec 21, 2012

    The high and mighty have spoken!!!
    The constitution always has and continues to support the right to bear arms.
    There is nothing immoral or lacking in common sense to own or manufacture (legally) a gun.
    So climb down off your high horses.
    You have the right not to own a gun. We still have the right to do so should we choose.
    Though I'm heartbroken about what happened to those beautiful children and teachers at Sandy Hook. EVERY gun owner (most of whom who have never used them for anything malicious) should not be put into the category of murderer because of every psychopath out there.

    If that's the case then we should all have our driver's licenses revoked with thought to how many drunk drivers there are out there who kill with their vehicles.

  • Bartmeister Dec 21, 2012

    Morality and common sense leaves the building when dollars are involved. welfarequeen


    Much like a court of law.

  • Crumps Br0ther Dec 21, 2012

    Of course these residents see nothing wrong with guns. THEY MAKE THEM. Morality and common sense leaves the building when dollars are involved.

    So put them out of work so they can get on assistance and live high on entitlements? Its the liberal way. Im starting to see how you got pregnant twice as a teen, you're not very bright and have poor decision making skills

  • goalflinger Dec 20, 2012

    Have you ever tried to convince a drunk that they didn't need another drink? Have you ever tried to convice a fuel that guns do not kill people, people kill people? Have you ever tried to stop a train going downhill when the brakes failed? Have you ever heard of a nation that got so caught up in what a charasmatic leader was saying that in its drunken stupor it failed to see where the leader was taking them? If you are a young liberal then you probably have no idea what i am talking about. I'm sure you will have some cute comeback that makes about as much sense as what is going on now with the fervor to stop the sale of guns. The mentally deranged, evil people with the will and mentality to kill innocent people were not hatched overnight. They were patiently cultivated by greed and other ills in our society. Now we are going to take more rights away from law abiding citizens? Why am I not surprised.

  • Damien Thorne Dec 20, 2012

    "The rest of the paragraph I agree 100% with, but calling out a single genre of music culture as the issue simply is inaccurate."----Lamborghini Mercy

    Such ignorance. Go listen to a rap song before you allow your fingers to type out your ignorance. Have you ever heard a rock and roll song other then this trash pop song that just came out talking about pulling his gat and bustin caps?

  • censorbait Dec 20, 2012

    50 years ago you never heard of mass killings and such. We left the keys in the car and the house unlocked. There were guns in the house. We kids played all over the neighborhood without fear. Those days are gone and it is no longer safe to even walk the streets anymore. The problem is not guns....it is us. Who or what we have become as a people. God out of the schools and everyday life. Family values, personal responsibility, parental guidance and patiotism scorned or just ignored. The quality of life has gotten much, much worse and it will not change unless we change. Goth, rap culture and violent video games and the like are contributory to producing young skulls full of nothing but mush. No respect for themselves or others. An public education system that seeks to indoctrinate rather than teach the basics needed to succeed. We have more gadgets and modern conveniences but we have to enjoy them behind double locked doors with a gun handy. Sad!!

  • undergroundsociety2 Dec 20, 2012

    so i vote we take all the unemployed war viets(young and old[old being between 45-55]) and place a couple of that at every school. that way schools are protected and the ones who protect this country dont have to go thru life wondering where the next check is coming from.

    im sure none of them would object to protecting schools and colleges.

  • Dynol Yn Cael Ei Dec 19, 2012

    welfarequeen - "Of course these residents see nothing wrong with guns. THEY MAKE THEM."

    What an absurd comment!!!

    I support RESPONSIBLE REGULATED gun ownership. I don't make guns, never did.

  • Dynol Yn Cael Ei Dec 19, 2012

    "'Gun free school zones actually attract violent predators,' said Paul Valone, with Grass Roots North Carolina."

    Makes total sense. Why didn't one of our brilliant legislators think of that?

    SROs like are in our middle and high schools need to be in ALL schools, including elementary schools.

    Had the principal in Sandy Hook been armed, there's at least a 50/50 chance she'd still be alive, and so would the others murdered that day.

  • undergroundsociety2 Dec 19, 2012


    its not about them seeing something wrong. its like blaming your childs teacher for them getting bad grades. blaming the drugs because people sell and die for them. the GUNS didnt kill those kids. the horrible person who shot the guns did.

    if your dog bit someone but its been trained to bit anyone but the owner, who would you blame? the owner or the dog? the owner of course because who trained the dog to bite anyone but the owner? guns are inanimate objects. they move when made to move. they wont shoot unless someone pulls the trigger.

    dont blame the gun. the gun is just the tool. blame the parents of the shooter. blame the shooter himself.