GREELEY, Pa. — An AR-15 semiautomatic rifle sits perched on a rack, higher than all the other things that decorate Justin Moon’s office in the Poconos.
He built the rifle himself, and it rests above his diplomas from Harvard and the University of Miami and shelves jammed with thick economics textbooks and business guides. Last week he sat at a desk beneath it, discussing a dead-serious plan to make that black gun even more ubiquitous in America.
“I mean, every American should really have an AR,” Moon said. “It’s America’s rifle.”
Moon, 47, is a son of the late Rev. Sun Myung Moon, founder of the controversial Unification Church in South Korea, but makes a living as a firearms manufacturer. Kahr Arms, which he founded in 1995, makes tens of thousands of pistols and rifles each year from facilities in Minnesota and Massachusetts, including a semiautomatic version of the Thompson submachine gun, the “Tommy Gun” that mowed down Chicago gangsters in the 1920s.
Moon canceled plans to build a plant in New York state, where his headquarters were located, after more restrictive gun-control measures were passed there in 2013 that expanded bans on military-style weapons and limited magazine sizes. He looked to Pennsylvania, which he described as “very gun-friendly.” In 2015, local and state elected officials helped him cut the ribbon on his new headquarters and retail store in a 620-acre industrial park he purchased off a winding road in Pike County.
“I think I share the values of many Pennsylvanians,” Moon said. “I fish, hunt, camp, you name it. Pennsylvania has a strong rural population with strong values. They love America. They love freedom.”
by Jason Nark