Archive for Ed Markey

Fingerprint Recognition For Guns Saves Lives

gun safety

gun safety personalization system overview

For a while, about ten years ago, there was a rash of car break-ins where the only thing stolen was the car radio. It was a very easy item for the crooks to fence. The huge numbers of incidents of these thefts rose so high that the car manufacturers and the car radio makers got together to address this problem. And you know what? They did and so successfully that the number of radio thefts dropped precipitously.

Now almost all cars are equipped with radios that have an anti-theft mechanism. If you steal a radio, you need a special code to activate it. Even if your power goes out in your car -- the battery dies -- you need the code to activate it. So a stolen radio won't work and hence you won't be buying too many "hot" music making devices.

Necessity is the mother of all invention, or so the saying goes. And Senator Ed Markey (D-Massachusetts) has a new proposal to cut down on accidental and even intentional gun violence.  He plans on introducing new federal gun legislation that would require all firearms manufactured in the U.S. to be equipped with “personalization technology,” so that if a weapon lands in the wrong hands, it can’t be fired.

For the uninitiated, that means all guns must come with fingerprint recognition -- similar to ID codes for radios -- so that they can not be fired except by the licensed, registered owner. It doesn't stop gun sales. It only stops unauthorized use of these weapons.

If the same outcome is true for firearms as for car radios why not do it? Illegally sold firearms won't do a buyer any good if they can't be fired. Hence, less unreported or fenced gun sales.

Markey gave an interview to Boston Magazine:

The Handgun Trigger Safety Act will help ensure that only authorized users can operate handguns. This is the type of gun safety legislation that everyone—regardless of political party or affiliation—should be able to support,” he said.

Now this technology is already available. It's just plain common sense. It's not taking any rights away from legal gun registrants, those with a license -- it actually could prevent them from having their weapons stolen. Safety-safety, win-win.

The technology could include fingerprint recognition, or safety systems like the Armatix iP1, referenced in Markey’s proposal, which relies on a radio-controlled watch that is responsible for gun access and use.

If passed, the law would also require anyone selling a handgun to retrofit their weapon with personalization technology three years after the date of enactment of the bill. 

The technology already exists:

A company called Safe Gun Technology, or SGTi, has been working on a product that could do just that. Relying on biometric technology, people would be unable to fire a weapon unless they were the owner.

If someone is against such a personalization then I suggest they have something to hide. There's not a sane reason that this can't be done. And cost isn't the issue. People always seem to find the money to buy a gun. If this technology is added to that cost, they'll find a way to come up with that extra few bucks just like they do with security locked radios in their cars. It's just part of the cost. If you really need a gun, you'll find the money. Just like when gasoline spikes to nearly $5/gal. We grumble and grouse, maybe cut back on our driving habits, but we don't give up our cars. Well gun owners can do the same. And they'll get over it just like we gas users do.

We make automobile smog testing and attaining a certificate mandatory every two years here in California. It's a cost burden (around $75 including certificate) and inconvenience, but it's for public safety and clean air. How about asking gun owners to be responsible for public safety with their own weapons by not letting unauthorized people pick up their gun and shoot it? Think of all those young kids who discover their parents' weapons and end up shooting a sibling or neighbor kid while they're playing with it? If equipped with fingerprint recognition, those accidents won't become fatalities. They just won't happen at all.


Massachusetts Has Spoken For All of Us


Ed Markey

Lost in the jubilant elation of today's historic SCOTUS rulings, upholding of natural rights of all Americans, gay or straight, was another very important decision.  The people of Massachusetts yesterday chose a newly elected Senator.  He's a long-time US representative who's giving up his seniority in the dysfunctional House of Representative to assume the seat that until recently was  held by John Kerry.  He's Ed Markey and he is more than just a new senator.  His election is seen as a message.  The GOP be damned.

America doesn't want GOP rule. The Republican party did everything they could to derail Markey's election.  The national party held fundraisers and filtered Koch Brothers cash into this campaign.  Millions.  They made it their mandate to win this one for the party.  And by a ten percent margin, their puppet candidate lost.

This is a bitter pill to swallow for the Repubs.  They made Massachusetts their test election, to gauge what will be happening in the 2014 midterms.  Within the party headquarters, Reince Priebus and his cronies are biting their nails and shaking in their boots.  There's actually a chance they could face such backlash because of their war on women, war on immigration and the war on education and public sector jobs, they may lose the House.  For 2016 their chances of presidential success with radical and insane candidates like Ron Paul and Marco Rubio prove they are not mainstream enough to defeat solid, human dignity.

One potential national candidate took the biggest hit.  It was Marco Rubio.  In the Bay State, the republicans put up a young, Hispanic, former navy SEAL.  Gabriel Gomez, the son of Colombian immigrants and a graduate of Harvard Business School ran on being Hispanic and being a true Republican.  Just like Marco Rubio, there's nothing more behind that young, attractive facade.  Voters are too smart to vote for paper  tigers any longer.  They want substance and the Republicans, despite their strongest efforts, couldn't touch Markey with a vapid, non-directional candidate who's strongest claim to fame is that he disagrees with gun control and favors the dissemination of automatic weapons, no background checks  and no limits on the size of bullet clips.  He's a junior Marco and now Rubio can see his future melting away like the polar icecaps Rubio voted against saving with his "no" votes on climate control bills. He and Gomez share a common future -- none.

Markey on the other hand,  ran on combating climate change, breaking our dependence on imported oil, human rights equality, women's equal pay and protections under the law and creation of jobs.

Thank you Massachusetts for showing us the way.  Your election sends a loud and clear message -- America wants better  and they want it now -- not status quo or regression.  That's what the GOP offered and that's what was soundly rejected.


Poll-itics: Ed Markey expands his lead in Massachusetts Senate race


gabriel gomez thumbs up, down

Democratic Rep. Ed Markey leads Gabriel Gomez by 11 points, 54%-43%, among likely voters, per a new Boston Globe survey. The special election will be held on June 25th.

Let's hope this particular gap keeps on expanding:

(CNN) – When voters were asked who would get their vote for if the election were held today, the gap expanded, with Markey still at 54% but Gomez at 41%. [...]

[A]ccording to the Globe, poll respondents find Gomez more likable. He also has the edge over Markey among unenrolled or independent voters, a crucial voting bloc in the race.

Maybe they need to read this report: IRS calls claim by GOP MA Senate nominee Gabriel Gomez a “tax scam.”


Poll-itics: Rep. Ed Markey (D) still leading Gabriel Gomez (R) in Massachusetts


please proceed

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Rachel Maddow:

...A political unknown... and this guy's a young, fresh face. That's one way to see this race. The second coming of Scott Brown....

Those same campaign people that lost Mitt Romney the presidency, who lost Mitt Romney his supposed home state by 23 points, and lost Scott Brown an incumbent U.S. Senate seat in Massachusetts, they are the same people in Massachusetts doing the Gabriel Gomez campaign for the Senate seat against Ed Markey.

So, it's the second coming of Scott Brown either way, right?

Which may explain this survey by Public Policy Polling that shows Rep. Ed Markey (D) continuing to lead Gabriel Gomez (R) by eight points, 47% to 39%.

And a University of Massachusetts at Amherst poll shows Markey leading by 11, 51% to 40%. (H/t: Taegan)

Please proceed, Team Romney.