Just hours after news reports surfaced yesterday that the Obama administration would have an announcement about “smart guns,” an 80-year-old Sultan-area woman used a plain old firearm with the “smarts” behind the trigger to fatally shoot a home invader last night who stabbed her husband.
Published reports say the unidentified 25-year-old attacker may have been trying to burglarize the home. He evidently made what some self-defense experts call “a fatal error in the victim selection process.”
UPDATE: Seattle Times reporter Christine Clarridge has an exclusive interview with the Sultan woman’s son. It appears the dead man had been planning to steal tools and even a truck belonging to the intended victims.
The silence from the gun control lobby is, as usual following a report like this, deafening. One doubts there will be a dramatic e-mail blast from the Seattle-based Alliance for Gun Responsibility asking for donations, because there is nothing here to exploit.
Had there not been a firearm in the home for the woman to use, the situation might have turned out even worse than it did. Her 75-year-old husband was airlifted to Seattle’s Harborview Medical Center with stab wounds to the abdomen, according to the Everett Herald. But the woman and her 45-year-old son, who was also in the home, were not injured.
It is fair to ask if this would have been possible had the firearm been a so-called “smart gun” that can only be operated by its owner. Some people have been trying to develop a 100-percent reliable “smart gun” for many years; one that doesn’t work except in the hands of the owner.
While there is nothing wrong with striving for safer gun technology, there are concerns that such technology will be mandated once it is available. Last night’s events in Snohomish County demonstrated that the real “smarts” of any firearm are always in the hands and between the ears.
This incident is the second reminder in the past couple of months that gun control does not prevent violent crime. Weeks ago, another armed citizen fatally shot an attacker armed with a large hatchet at a convenience store in the unincorporated Boulevard Park area near Burien, south of Seattle. In the Utopian world imagined by gun prohibitionists, none of the intended victims in either incident would have been able to defend themselves or others with the necessary force to stop the attack.
Law enforcement professionals are skeptical about “smart guns” and so are many other people who do not want their safety, or the safety of loved ones, family members or partners to depend on any device that may malfunction if a battery goes dead or there’s a short in the software. When lives are at stake, an emergency survival tool must work first, last and always.
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