Katie Porter Shames Gun Execs For Making Guns Less Secure Than An Iphone With Mic Drop Demonstration
Gun safety and regulation have been strong in the minds of many Americans since the multiple mass shootings this year, and California Democratic Representative Katie Porter has some pretty strong feelings on the subject—and a striking example of how to fix the problem.
During a hearing where she was questioning Daniel Defense CEO Marty Daniel and Ruger Firearms' president and CEO Christopher Killoy on their companys' plans for improving firearm safety, she offered fingerprint scanners as an option for improving the security of their products and asked Daniel if his company would implement them.
Porter shared video from the hearing on Twitter.
\u201cThe CEO of a major gun manufacturer said he's unwilling to add safety features to his company's guns because "customers are not interested." That puts us all at risk. That's like saying Americans should get to buy faulty appliances even if they'll burn down the house next door.\u201d— Rep. Katie Porter (@Rep. Katie Porter) 1658955909
"The question is: will you commit to adding fingerprint scanners as a safety technology to every Daniel Defense firearm? Yes or no."
"No ma'am, our customers are not interested in that.
In a second video, Porter used her iPhone to demonstrate safety technology available to gun manufacturers today.
\u201cWeapons shouldn't have fewer safety features than cell phones. Today, I asked firearm manufacturers why they won't put fingerprint scanners on all their guns, which could prevent up to 40% of accidental deaths.\u201d— Rep. Katie Porter (@Rep. Katie Porter) 1658950485
This time she spoke to Killoy:
“This is a cell phone, Mr. Killoy. It scans my fingerprint each time I go to unlock it. Is this a weapon?"
"Can this fire bullets that shred people's vital organs...this phone?"
"No, Congresswoman, it can't."
Representative Porter countered:
"Then why should this device require more steps to operate than your company's firearms—which have been used in accidental shootings, mass shootings, and homicides?"
Killoy attempted a retort:
"Congresswoman, respectfully, your cell phone doesn't generate internal pressures of up to 60,000 PSI. The operating system of a firearm is extremely dynamic, extreme high pressures, lots of moving peices."
"And first and foremost, a firearm—especially one used for self defense—needs to function reliably."
But Porter wasn't going to listen to excuses.
"Okay, respectfully, reclaiming my time. These [...] fingerprint scanners are offered in some firearms. Some manufacturers sell this and they work."
"Your company, and Mr. Daniel's company, chooses not to."
To further prove her point, she again showed how fast it is to unlock her phone.
"Let me demonstrate again how long this takes. It's instant. It's instant when I pick up my phone."
Many people pointed out most industries had to be legislated into adding safety measures.
\u201c@YeahMyBad @RepKatiePorter Restaurants, airlines, bars &many other businesses had no interest in banning smoking. When that was proposed people insisted that was the end of freedom, it wouldn't work & all the same excuses you're hearing here.\nTobacco companies fought it for the same reason - profits first.\u201d— Rep. Katie Porter (@Rep. Katie Porter) 1658955909
\u201c@RepKatiePorter Not many wanted seat-belts installed in cars let alone being mandated having to wear them but sometimes things have to done for the peoples safety.\n\nDo the victims & loved ones of victims of gun trauma have the right to join up for one helluva class action suit?\u201d— Rep. Katie Porter (@Rep. Katie Porter) 1658955909
Some questioned why Daniel and Killoy didn't just take the Congresswoman's suggestion
\u201c@RepKatiePorter He should have just said, "Point taken. I will talk with my engineers and get back to you next week." \n\nKatie Porter with or without a whiteboard has some serious bite.\u201d— Rep. Katie Porter (@Rep. Katie Porter) 1658950485
A few pointed out other cell phone features that would be great for improving firearm safety.
\u201c@RepKatiePorter @SchwRoark A cell phone can also be disabled when stolen.\u201d— Rep. Katie Porter (@Rep. Katie Porter) 1658950485
There was a lot of support for Representative Porter online for her no-nonsense approach to issues.
\u201c@RepKatiePorter I really need to move into her district\u2026no nonsense, asks the question we want asked and takes no bs. Need more of this!\u201d— Rep. Katie Porter (@Rep. Katie Porter) 1658950485
\u201c@RepKatiePorter THANK YOU Katie Porter for being one of the best in congress! \n\ud83d\udc4f\ud83d\udc4f\ud83d\udc4f\ud83d\udd25\ud83d\udd25\ud83d\udd25\ud83d\udc4d\u2665\ufe0f\u201d— Rep. Katie Porter (@Rep. Katie Porter) 1658950485
\u201c@RepKatiePorter Drawing analogies and highlighting inconsistencies. @RepKatiePorter is always one step ahead.\u201d— Rep. Katie Porter (@Rep. Katie Porter) 1658950485
\u201c@RepKatiePorter I adore you for standing up, speaking up and being the voice of reason. \ud83d\udc4f\ud83d\udc4f\ud83d\udc4f\u201d— Rep. Katie Porter (@Rep. Katie Porter) 1658950485
The technology exists to make firearms safer, but many companies refuse to implement any.
Maybe it's time for legislation to motivate them toward safety, just like with other safety features like seat belts and air bags in cars.