A military solution could disable an argument used against the one firearm most upsetting to anti-gunners. The U.S. Army is moving forward with “smart gun” technology that would render military weapons useless in the wrong hands. The military wants an electronic chip installed that would disable military rifles and machine guns when not used by U.S. forces.
Development of the chip is moving forward, and likely will be completed successfully. If so, that would provide a military solution to improve civilian firearm safety. The Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre might not have happened with such technology in place. We would also know for sure if there was a second shooter as has been theorized in the Las Vegas shooting massacre. Anti-gunners, though, blame the rifle, rather than the perpetrators. In particular, they blame the AR-15.
Anti-gun politicians love to portray one of the most popular civilian firearms of all time as a “weapon of war.” The venerable AR-15 outsold all other models of civilian rifles since its introduction with a line of 300 Colt ArmaLite AR-15 rifles in 1959. The “AR” stands for “ArmaLite Rifle.”
Anti-gunners and those with no firearms experience mistakenly think the “AR” stands for “assault rifle.” They declare the AR-15 to be a “weapon of war” with no business in civilian hands. They even think it fires the same 5.56 mm round used by the military. It does not, although some are capable. Most fire the less potent civilian .223 round.
The AR-15’s resemblance to the M-16 military assault rifle, and the coincidental “AR” designation fools many. Anti-gunners would have us think the AR-15 is wielded by military forces and capable of mowing down innocent victims with a high rate of fire. It is not. Yet, a simple Google search shows what the venerable rifle and its owners are up against. An additional “People also ask” result pops up. It affirms the massive ignorance surrounding the AR-15 with three allegedly commonly asked questions:
- When did assault weapons become available to the public?
- Which came first: AR-15 or M-16?
- How many AR-15s have been used in mass shootings?
The AR-15, as well as the civilian AK-47, are wildly popular and based on actual assault rifles in military and police use around the globe. They are not, however, capable of continual fire. You have to pull the trigger every time a round is fired — just like most handguns. And it is illegal to convert them to automatic fire. Most civilian models do not fire the military 5.56 mm round, either.
With anti-gunners falsely portraying the AR-15 as a military “weapon of war,” many politicians opposed to firearms and the Second Amendment want the AR-15 removed from civilian hands. They blame it for mass shootings and mistakenly think such things would not happen if the AR-15 did not exist.
Weapons of war are designed to inflict mass casualties, they say. Ironically, a military solution could render that argument pointless. Smart technology developed for military applications might make it impossible to steal firearms later used in criminal acts.
That would not stop the owner of a firearm from using it in a mass shooting. But studies show the vast majority of legal gun owners do not use firearms for criminal acts. Mostly, it would render as moot the most popular argument anti-gunners have against the AR-15 and firearms in general.