USA Today Publishes RF’s Anti-Smart Gun Editorial

(courtesy usatoday.com)

When USA Today asks a writer for an editorial they want it USA Yesterday. That’s one reason they tap RF for pro-gun pieces; the boss can blog in his sleep. He cranked out ‘Smart’ guns, dumb idea for usatoday.com in twenty-minutes. The result isn’t really pro-gun as much it’s anti-smart gun. “New Jersey gun owners don’t want to lose access to, trade or face the confiscation of tried-and-true non-electronic firearms. They view electronic firearms as inherently unreliable. What if your finger’s covered with dirt or blood? What if the electronic ‘smart gun’ runs out of power? What if you need to use someone else’s ‘smart gun’ in an emergency? American gun owners’ basic attitude to smart gun technology is distinctly Missourian. Show me. In fact, we’ll consider using smart guns after the police use them to provide proof of concept. And maybe not even then.” If only the New York Times would open its editorial page to RF’s pro-gun polemics . . .

comments

  1. avatar racer88 says:

    Nice going, Robert!

  2. avatar Paelorian says:

    I read the New York Times almost daily, my home has a subscription. I grew up reading the paper. I have never read a pro-Right to Keep and Bear Arms article in the paper, ever. Not in the editorial pages nor in the regular articles. Not one. It is absolutely biased on this issue, with no effort towards neutrality. Their policy must forbid pro-gun articles. I speak of pro-gun not by NYT standards but by TTAG standards.

    Farago pumps out a nationally-distributed published editorial in twenty minutes? Now I have something to blame his occasional sloppy writing on. I don’t send out half of my correspondence until I reread it the next day!

    Good on USA Today that they take a neutral stance and publish editorials of various persuasions. Let arguments be made and the public decide.

    For the record, I think the New York Times sucks and has low journalistic standards. I have it because my family wants it. As bad as it is, the other NYC papers are far worse (Daily News headline: “AR-15 Kills Again!” when a Remington 870 pump-action shotgun was used). I’m going to for an interview out-of-state as soon as next week, I can’t wait to leave.

    1. avatar Citizen says:

      That sounds like MY life in CA, except I refuse to allow any paper in our house but the Wall Street Journal, which is refreshingly neutral, leaning pro-gun.

      1. avatar Mark N. says:

        My sister gave me a subscription to the Sunday NYT. I stopped reading it a few months ago, and I cancelled it–twice. But it still shows up like clockwork every Sunday morning. I’m still not reading it. At least I can be assured no one is paying for it…

        1. avatar Charles5 says:

          In a twist of irony you could always use the NYT to cover your work area when you clean your guns. The Wife and I only subscribe to the local paper for the coupons and so I can use the paper to catch all the cleaner and oil runoff when I clean my guns. I live in an apartment and don’t have room for a dedicated work space

  3. avatar launchpadmech says:

    Strong words. Do they give a rabbit’s butt?

    1. avatar Samuel Leoon Suggs says:

      By “Do they give a rabbit’s butt” I assume you mean “do they care”?

      1. avatar Jeff says:

        No, I don’t think they hare a whole lot.

  4. avatar Maineuh says:

    Wahoo! That’s awesome. Farago is a machine.

  5. avatar Tom in Oregon says:

    Well done RF.
    Short, salient. And in a national paper.

  6. avatar Frank Masotti says:

    “In fact, we’ll consider using smart guns after the police use them to provide proof of concept”
    That will never happen. So we really do not have to worry about it.

    1. avatar Hannibal says:

      That one sentence could be the salient point for the entire article. If this technology just makes guns safer, why WOULDN’T every police force be pushing to use it?

      1. avatar DJ says:

        When you think about the lengths police departments go to to ensure holsters facilitate weapon retention, it does beg the question.

        1. avatar Samuel Leoon Suggs says:

          I’ve have the opposite exspearence my cops are all about “da qick dwa”

        2. avatar ropingdown says:

          It is true that many LEOs that get shot are shot with their own handgun. This would be perfect for them.

          Yep, good piece, RF. WSJ next?

      2. avatar DJ9 says:

        “If this technology just makes guns safer, why WOULDN’T every police force be pushing to use it?”

        Hannibal, for the same reason that cop-purchased pistols are exempted from CA safety testing law.

        It’s not about safety at all.

      3. avatar Larry says:

        I’m still waiting for the grabbers to advocate “proof of concept” by disarming all police departments! I’ve got $100 says I am better trained and more capable than 90% of police officers, and some want to disarm me, show me how well that would work by disarming the police!

    2. avatar Cliff H says:

      Perhaps we could consider “smart” guns (the firearms equivalent of the Smart car?) as proven technology and suitable for purchase after law enforcement and/or the military does the beta testing, however, we should NEVER consider nor for even a moment allow that the government has any authority whatsoever to mandate smart guns as the only firearms available for purchase. There is that pesky little “…shall not be infringed.” thing to consider.

      If a manufacturer wants to spend/waste their R&D money and manufacturing capabilities producing these types of weapons, that’s on them and they may find some market for these guns, but the only law on the books should be that these firearms are to be exempt from any legal restrictions or taxes during probate, which will be frequently an issue.

      1. avatar Andy says:

        I’m not sure the Smart car is a good example… I drove one in Italy a couple years ago- slowest, tippiest and most dangerous vehicle I’ve EVER been in. The firearms equivalent is more DoubleTap than smartgun…

        The Fisker Karma is probably a better choice of example: fast when it works, but inclined to explode and delivers much lower performance than advertised for it’s core capability (35MPG hybrid sedan is not that impressive for $80K…)

  7. avatar Gw says:

    Excellent work Mr. Farago. “Proud To Stand With Ye”
    In addition, caused also to at least casually wonder — what if your finger is covered with say…a glove?

    1. avatar Mark N. says:

      The smart gun for sale in California relies on a RFID chip embedded in the gun and a watch that has to be worn on the same wrist as your shooting hand (the range is only 10″). So no worries about dirt. But don’t try shooting with your weak hand…

  8. avatar Randy Drescher says:

    Good going Robert. I hope smart gun nonsense is not the tipping point to violence.

  9. avatar Gw says:

    As noted from antiquity: ‘intelligence becomes measurable in part as, the ability to accurately predict the outcome of any given action or series of actions’.
    With the aforementioned in Mind, no significant extension of intellect is required to predict that — should the proposed dumb chip technology not initially incorporate some type or associated variation of say, radio frequency signaling for the purpose of tracking and disabling — it most assuredly will in later and more advanced versions.

    As duly noted from more recent history: ‘the electronic age signaled the ultimate end of any semblance of individual privacy’.
    In an not entirely dissimilar manner: ‘enactment of confiscatory taxation signaled the ultimate end of the Founder’s idea of Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness under their beloved American Constitutional Republic form of government’.

  10. avatar Accur81 says:

    Well and quickly said, sir. If the technology was truly desirable, police would want it. Think for a moment of the good tech you currently own. It has inherent value, and you will seek it out on your own. The government doesn’t need to force you to own a 64 GB phone, a 4G LTE IPad, a Samsung Galaxy IV, or a 430 BHP Ford Mustang, Brembro brakes, or a 50 MPG hybrid. If its good, people will purchase it on the open market, or upgrade what they currently own.

    If its garbage, and ultimately about control, the government statist will cram it down the throats of the people. This looks like the latter.

    1. avatar Mark N. says:

      Rumor has it that the German manufacturer can’t sell this junk in Germany either, and is losing money. Without consumer demand, that must mean we are on to the “cram” option.

    2. avatar Cliff H says:

      Actually, effective technology for this purpose has existed for many years. There are numerous effective retention holsters on the market. If you were to equip these with a steel cable lanyard permanently affixed to the holster and pistol you would have a secure weapon and no batteries required. (/sarc)

    3. avatar Jeff says:

      “[force you to own] a 50 MPG hybrid”

      Actually, with the amount of governmental decrees that “vehicle X must get 50MPG within ten years!” this is a very real possibility

  11. avatar Gw says:

    “If you like your current GUN, you can keep your GUN. Period.”
    Once you’ve conveniently registered yourself and your GUN at the GUNHEALTH.gov website; submitted fees, a recent passport-quality photo, fingerprints, DNA, urine and stool samples;
    completed a training course;
    been psychologically evaluated and approved by an approved .gov examiner;
    had your registered GUN retrofitted and activated at a .gov agency with the new GUN SAFETY / unAFFORDABLE GUNHEALTH / REDISTRIBUTION of GUNRIGHTS / CONFISCATORY TAXATION / INSURANCE chip; and
    made your first monthly installment payment;- you can keep your GUN. Period.
    Some additional restrictions may apply.
    See your local GUNHEALTH Navelgrater for further assistance.

  12. avatar JAS says:

    “In fact, we’ll consider using smart guns after the police use them to provide proof of concept”

    While they are at it, have the police also use “substandard capacity” magazines and let’s see how that all works out too.

    Great article RF, short and sweet.

  13. avatar Closet Gun Nut says:

    Here it is folks. A somewhat ‘smarter’ version of a smart gun:

    http://www.tarnhelm.com/magna-trigger/gun/safety/magna1.html

    If I HAD to, I’d feel better with this than something electronic.

  14. avatar ccdwguy says:

    Great editorial and agree the cops should use them first. As much as we read about them leaving guns in unlocked cars, bathrooms and other places it may not be the guns that need to be smarter.

  15. avatar TheBear says:

    This is a great article. I just hope some fence-sitters read it.

  16. avatar Gyufygy says:

    Judging by the previous post, I can think of one police officer who should be required to use a smart gun.

    1. avatar Larry says:

      With no bullets!

  17. avatar Mark says:

    If this “technology” is so perfect that it be mandated then to prove that, I think every NJ politician who voted for this law should be required to take one of these LOADED “Smart Weapons” that is NOT registered to them and hold it point blank at one of their loved ones and pull the trigger. If as little as ONE of them does not pull the trigger that means THEY THEMSELVES ARE NOT COMFORTABLE WITH THE TECHNOLOGY. If they’re not completely trusting of the technology, then neither should any of their citizens.

    I certainly could not pull the trigger. And I’m quite certain (and thankful) virtually none of them would either. If the technology can’t be trusted to not fire, then we should not be expect to think the technology will always work perfectly when we NEED it to fire in self defense.

  18. avatar RKflorida says:

    This uses RFID technology? How interesting. Police generate an EMP and all “Smart” guns in range no longer work. What a great way to disarm the citizens.
    Any bets on how long it would take to hack the electronics?

  19. avatar Kyle says:

    Not to mention the fact that bureaucrats have no right to be dictating to citizens that they use guns with some kind of special sophisticated technology.

  20. avatar Ronaldo_Ignacio says:

    Has anyone seen this other Armatix innovation?
    http://www.armatix.de/TRS.781.0.html?&L=1

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