Inevitability Is Inevitable


Some things are inevitable. For those unpleasant inevitabilities, we have a choice: We can stick our head in the sand because it’s gonna be lousy, or we can take on the challenge of figuring out how we intend to deal with it.

My inevitability ponderance these days is … smart guns.

James Bond had one, and it was cool in the movies because, if I remember correctly, a bad guy got ahold of it and wasn’t able to perforate our double-oh-hero because he was born with not-James-Bond’s fingerprints. Nifty fiction.

In the real world, our industry seems to be terrified of the prospect, both on the manufacturer and customer side. I can count the number of my shooting acquaintances who are enthused about smart guns on precisely null fingers and toes. That’s not many.

The near-universal fear in our community is real — and completely understandable.

From the knowledgeable gun owner side of the discussion, many don’t trust the technology, even knowing it will steadily advance like all other new techie things. Will it work when it’s raining, when your hands are sweaty, when you’re surprised by breaking glass while in the shower, or when you’re bleeding from fighting off an attacker? Add infinity more scenarios to this list — you get the idea. Oh, and while I won’t speak for you, I’ll always desire the flexibility for someone else to use my gun in an emergency. My wife, friend or a nearby good Samaritan may need to put my signature gun to use in a bad situation.

If you pretend to be an anti-gunner for a minute, you’re likely salivating over the idea of smart guns. What more “common sense” gun control argument is there than guns that can only work for one (or a designated few) people? It’s gonna be a tough one to fight in the court of public opinion, so the road to mandates is icy indeed.

And I’ll bet you 50 bazillion dollars there will be a massive push for two things: universal adoption (a mandate) and, shortly after that, all manner of pressure on smart gun manufacturers from big gubmint to get their greedy paws on smart gun customer lists. Will those efforts be successful? That’s up to us.

Here’s the thing. Smart guns are inevitable. Being cranky about them isn’t going to cause them to be un-invented or unreleased to the marketplace. There are plenty of companies out there developing the technology, and big and powerful forces are all for it. Sure, an individual can choose whether or not to own one (assuming there’s no successful future mandate initiative), but none of us can wish them away.

What’s the winning strategy? I don’t yet know, but I will embrace the inevitability by learning a lot more about them, the companies involved and the motivations of the people running those companies. I figure it’s a good start.

So, what inevitable inevitabilities are bumper car-ing around in your brain? And more importantly, what are you going to do about it?

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