Let me be the first to say that I’m sold on smart guns, firearms that utilize technology to disable a firearm for unauthorized users. That’s right, I fully support the development of smart guns! I didn’t always feel this way but now, now I feel like why not? Why not encourage young gun nerds and tech wizards to develop smart guns?
Yes, yes, I get the obvious objection to smart guns. They’re unreliable — at least for now. Both of the systems commonly used in smart guns are flawed. For the unfamiliar, most smart guns use either radio or biometric technology. A radio system uses a signal contained in a separate key (RFID chip) worn by the user, typically in the form of a bracelet, ring, or watch, to unlock the firearm. A biometric system uses sensors in the grip of the gun to scan for unique body patterns, such as fingerprints.
As we all know, radio signals can be jammed or hacked by an outside party and the key to unlock the firearm can be lost or stolen. With biometric systems, they obviously won’t work with gloves on, so that’s a non-starter for many as well as the fact that sensors can run out of battery life, become damaged or break down over time. But these very real technological hurdles shouldn’t stand in the way of those venturing to bring workable smart guns to market.
In the video posted above, you’ll see a precocious 19-year-old by the name of Kai Kloepfer who has created a biometric smart gun that has potential. But more than the gun itself, I see a lot of potential in Kloepfer, who impressed me with his passion and love for firearms. One of his financial sponsors called him the “Mark Zuckerberg of guns.” In my opinion, that’s what the gun industry needs. More young and dynamic gun guys and gals who want to challenge the status quo, solve problems and create products for future generations.
For me, the best current success story of young visionaries jumping into the gun industry and radically changing the way we shoot are the founders of Silencerco. Who would’ve thought a decade ago that suppressors would be a mainstream accessory? Well, the guys at Sliencerco saw the challenge, took it head on and we now see the results. Cans are becoming a must-have, not just for serious gun owners but for all hobbyists, collectors, and hunters.
So, I don’t see why someone like Kloepfer can’t bring us into the age of smart guns. Now, due to the controversial history of smart guns, I recognize there are still a bunch of naysayers reading this; let me be very, very clear. The real problem you’re having isn’t with smart guns, it’s with smart gun politics. And I totally agree. Anti-gun lawmakers in places like New Jersey are chomping at the bit to force us into giving up our tried and true firearms for smart guns. This is unconstitutional and should be stopped. To paraphrase my friend Alan Korwin, “Making legal arms illegal is infringement.” Infringement is unconstitutional, hence the phrase “Shall not be infringed.”
Lawmakers can’t force us into adopting smart guns. Quite ironically, there very effort to do so has retarded smart gun development. For many major gun companies, it’s been a forbidden fruit because of these idiot politicians foisting their gun-banning agenda. Meanwhile, the marketplace suffers, consumers suffer. Because there is a market for smart guns. For example, while my kids are growing up (I don’t have any right now, this is a hypothetical) and are too young to learn the basics of firearm safety, I think I would want to keep a smart gun by my bedside instead of my traditional pump gun, a Stevens Model 320. The smart gun provides an extra level of security. That seems logical, right?
I know I’m not the only one who feels that way. Plenty more people do (I also wonder how many non-gun owners who may not consider owning a traditional gun, might be interested in owning a smart gun. Smart guns could be a gateway for those on the fence about gun ownership). The point is we should have options. We should be able to own whatever firearms (including full autos) we think are necessary and best for our defense posture, both at home and in the public square. That’s what the 2A protects. And if you’re being honest with yourself, I’m sure a smart gun would make its way into your rotation at some point in your life (maybe it’s your bedside gun or your truck gun or your backup gun, it’ll all depends on what you think is best). So, I say if we can get these anti-gunners off our backs we ought to welcome youngsters like Kloepfer and their new smart gun developments with open arms.