Democrat Rep. Pushes Bill Requiring Traditional Guns to be Retrofitted as ‘Smart Guns’

kids playing with fire AP

Representative Carolyn B. Maloney (D-NY-12) has introduced a bill requiring all traditional handguns to be retrofitted with “smart gun” technology before they can be sold.

The bill grants 10 years until the retrofitting requirement goes into effect.

According to a press release from Maloney’s office, the “smart gun” legislation is called the Handgun Trigger Safety Act. It would be implemented in stages–requiring manufacturers to make only “smart guns” within the next five years and then require the retrofitting of traditional handguns five years later.

The Act would also use taxpayer money “to develop and improve “personalized” handgun technology to increase efficacy and decrease costs” and would “provide reimbursement to manufacturers for the costs of retrofitting handguns.” The reimbursement would come out of “the Department of Justice Assets Forfeiture Fund.”

Maloney said:

How many more kids have to die? How many more police officers have to be killed with their own weapon before we come to our senses? We wouldn’t drive in cars or use baby cribs that didn’t adopt the latest safety technology, and we shouldn’t use guns that don’t take advantage of this technology either. I’m proud to reintroduce the Handgun Trigger Safety Act to support the development and adoption of innovative safety technology for handguns. We should be taking advantage of new technology, not shunning it.

Two very important points need to be made. First, “smart guns” are not smart. Anyone who has a phone with an fingerprint reader can see for themselves by dipping their thumb into a glass of tea then swiping that wet thumb across the reader. The phone does not unlock. In fact, wetting a thumb or finger with almost any liquid makes the fingerprint unreadable. And for those of you who live in cold or cool climates, trying swiping your phone’s fingerprint reader while you are wearing gloves. Some may recoil at the ignorance of that suggestion, but if you were carrying a “smart gun” and came under attack on a day on which you wore gloves, you would have to swipe that reader with a gloved finger in hopes of defending yourself.

And these are simply the problems with “smart guns” that have biometric readers. “Smart guns” that activate from being in close proximity to a radio-paired bracelet or watch present an entirely new set of problems.

The second important point that needs to be made is that guns are by no means the greatest danger for accidental death that children face. In truth, children are many times more likely to die from fire or water than from firearms.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention figures from 2010 showed that children under ten were seven times more likely to accidentally burn to death and 16 times more likely to accidentally drown than to be killed in an accidental firearm-related death. Crime Prevention Research Center’s John Lott highlighted the far greater danger of fire and water by showing that 36 children under the age of ten were killed in firearm-related accidents in 2010 versus 262 who died in “unintentional fire/burn deaths” and 609 who died in “unintentional drowning” incidents.

Yet Maloney is pushing “smart guns” instead of “smart matches” and “smart pools.”

AWR Hawkins is the Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and host of Bullets with AWR Hawkins, a Breitbart News podcast. He is also the political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at


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