CHICAGO, IL As the debate over gun control heats up in Washington, Chicago State
University Associate Dean of Health Sciences Dr. Damon T. Arnold is taking his "outside-the-box"
approach to the nation's capital this week in hopes of advancing his idea to use cutting
edge technology that would truly make schools and other areas "gun free zones."
"While the conventional debates over gun control continues to produce little more
than political gridlock, I feel it's important to consider different, science-based
approaches that would have an immediate impact in terms of preventing tragedies such
as the one that happened at Sandy Hook Elementary," Dr. Arnold said. "By incorporating
technological elements such as radio frequency identification devices into any new
gun manufactured in the U.S., as well as retrofitting existing firearms, we could
realistically create a monitoring system that protects schools and other 'gun-free
zones' while not infringing on the rights of law-abiding gun owners."
Dr. Arnold, who is also a retired Colonel, met in Washington at the Institute of Medicine
staff this week to promote his idea to equip guns with radio frequency identification
devices (RFID) transforming a normal hand gun into a "smart gun". Among the many potential
benefits of RFID equipped guns would be the ability for law enforcement to be immediately
alerted if someone attempts to carry a gun into nurseries, movie theaters, work places,
schools, faith-based institutions or other designated areas. The technology would
also help create a safer environment for legal gun owners, who could be made immediately
aware if their safely stored gun has been removed by a thief, a child or anyone else
that should not have control of a firearm.
"From Aurora to Sandy Hook to the South Side of Chicago, it is clear that our current
efforts to prevent gun violence are not enough and we need to approach this vast problem
with creative solutions," Dr. Arnold added.