What the Kelly Report is NOT is a manifesto against guns or gun owners. Let me be clear: I am not anti-gun. I am pro common sense. I believe America is capable of striking the right balance between protecting our Second Amendment rights and promoting public safety by keeping guns out of the wrong hands. This report strikes that balance. I trust that people on both sides of the gun reform debate will find in the Kelly Report legislative and policy proposals that their communities can get behind.
Reauthorize the Federal Assault Weapons Ban (H.R. 437—Rep. Carolyn McCarthy). The Assault Weapons Ban of 2013 would extend and reauthorize the Federal Assault Weapons Ban, an expired federal law that prohibited the manufacturing, transportation or distribution of semi-automatic weapons and ammunition feeders.
If every gun had an irremovable tracking number, it would be significantly easier for law enforcement to minimize gun trafficking and track illegal gun transfers. Similarly, inclusion of RFID (radio frequency identification) tags on guns that allow them only to fire if read by a corresponding chip worn by the owner would prevent gun violence that results from gun theft or wrongful use. The technology for smart guns currently exists.
Robin L. Kelly
Member of U.S. Congress
Kelly Report 2014: Gun Violence in America
[Don’t ever let anyone get away telling you that no one wants to take your guns. This is another member of Congress that specifically supports a ban on the most popular rifle in America. She says she wants to protect Second Amendment rights but does not give us any clue that she knows what right to keep and bear arms means. I don’t believe this is an accident. I believe she included those words only to defuse some of the criticism.
The stupidity, and/or ignorance, and/or arrogance, and/or deliberate deception is astounding in this “balanced report”. The report gives credit to over a dozen contributors but not a single one is identified as supporting gun owners or the specific enumerated right to keep and bear arms. They are all anti-gun. Yet she says, “I trust that people on both sides of the gun reform debate will find in the Kelly Report legislative and policy proposals that their communities can get behind.” Strictly speaking she is probably correct. I can find proposals in her report that I don’t oppose. I don’t see anything wrong with the following non-legislative proposals:
Promote the Understanding of and Attention to the Mental Health Needs of Students. Too often mental health issues are either misunderstood or ignored, often resulting in tragic consequences. School teachers should receive mental health training to help them better identify potential warning signs so they’re able to intervene earlier. Similarly, community groups, medical and mental health professionals should be better supported in public education and mental health destigmatization efforts that encourage people to seek mental health treatment.
Change the Social Dynamic in Urban Communities and Increase Proactive Prevention Programs in Schools. Nothing stops a bullet like a job, or a quality education. After school programs, job training programs, mentoring programs with local business leaders and community recreational programs, such as Chicago’s “Windy City Hoops,” keep kids off the streets and working towards productive futures. Additionally, alternatives to violence and conflict resolution can be promoted through mentoring programs with former gang members that inform young people of the perils of gang association and gang violence. Similarly, programs connecting urban youth with police officers will help bridge the gap and provide sensitivity and awareness training that will improve community trust of law enforcement, and assist in decreasing gang violence and police brutality.
Support Smart Policing. Proactive initiatives by police departments to prevent criminal activity, paired with an increased visible police presence in some of the most dangerous neighborhoods, are an effective means of preventing crime and gun violence. Similarly, police departments can work with local schools to target high-risk individuals—both victims and criminals—to prevent them from being placed in dangerous situations. For example, the Chicago Police Department has joined with Chicago Public Schools to promote early intervention by determining which students are most at-risk and encouraging them to enter mentoring programs and other positive activities.
But that is a minuscule part of her “balanced report”. Where is the gun safety training? Or training on the legal and moral aspect of self-defense? It doesn’t exist in her world. She can only see benefit in restricting the rights of people rather than in enabling people to protect themselves.
But what really got my attention is the last paragraph quoted above about “smart guns”.
“Irremovable tracking number”? I think we call those serial numbers and have been required for decades. But “irremovable” is an impossible (or at least extremely impractical) requirement.
RFID tags cannot stop a gun from firing. The sentence, “…inclusion of RFID (radio frequency identification) tags on guns that allow them only to fire if read by a corresponding chip worn by the owner…” is nonsensical. A RFID tag is little more than a fancy bar code. RFID tags cannot inhibit the firing of a gun. RFIDs can be made more secure than bar codes and hence less likely to be copied but at best she has thing backwards. If she had said a chip in the gun read the RFID tag worn by the owner then it would have least made sense. But that does not get around the issue brought up by NSSF (see below). The gun then clearly has to have a power supply which is subject to failure.
I am convinced these people believe in magic. Engineering is limited by the physical laws of the universe. They believe we can just cast some spell and make something happen. I understand the (especially supersonic) flight of airplanes, internal combustion engines, electric motors, GPS, the near instantaneous communication of email, television, and cellphones are all beyond the comprehension of most people. And I can understand guns could easily be dumped into the same mental magic box. Most people seek out experts and many of them actually respect the opinions of the expects. These people don’t. They did seek out the opinions of some gun manufactures and the NSSF. They even quoted them:
Beretta issued the following statement regarding smart guns:
As the leading designer and manufacturer of high-quality firearms in the world, Beretta has recently been asked by several news organizations about the feasibility and advisability of making handguns that include so-called “smart gun” technology or “personalized” internal locks. Beretta has considered this issue for several years and has concluded that existing design concepts of this type are neither advisable nor feasible.
Although the concept of a “smart gun” or “personalized gun” has received public attention recently, we believe that careful consideration has not been given to potentially dangerous risks associated with these concepts. In our opinion, such technology is undeveloped and unproven. In addition, Beretta strongly believes that “smart gun” technology or “personalized” guns… could actually increase the number of fatal accidents involving handguns.
The National Shooting Sports Foundation in the United States, which is the trade association for the gun industry, still claims on its website that personalized guns are ill advised, citing the 1996 Sandia report that focused on police weapons:
“Personalized” or “smart gun” technology, while in development stages, is neither reliable nor available. A U.S. Department of Justice-funded project, researched by Sandia National Laboratories, concluded, “There is not currently a perfect smart gun technology.” Owner recognition technology, such as fingerprint recognition or a radio transmitter, requires a power source to work. Any technology that relies on a power source will fail, possibly at the worst time imaginable.
They then go on to dismiss these experts without addressing the fundamental issues of concern. That is demonstration of either crap for brains or deliberate deception. Hence this report and Congresswoman Kelly should be treated accordingly.—Joe]