Thursday, August 23, 2007

The Myth of Gun Control: Britain's Experience

While efforts are afoot in America to limit law abiding Americans' access to firearms, specifically handguns, England has already done just that. And they are reaping the whirlwind. From the Telegraph:

The number of young people prosecuted for firearms offences has soared by 20 per cent in the past five years, it was revealed earlier this month.

In 2001, 1,193 youngsters under age 21 went to magistrates courts on gun related charges.

By 2005, that had risen to 1,444. The statistics come after a recent wave of gun crime in Britain’s inner cities, with many victims not even out of their teens. Shadow home affairs minister James Brokenshire said: “The rise in gun crime demonstrated by these figures is alarming.”

England dis-armed its civilian population over a decade ago, yet gun violence is escalating. And it is rising in a population that should have difficulty in accessing such weapons - youth.

In April Bernard Hogan-Howe, the chief constable of Merseyside Police, insisted new laws to make reporting information on shootings and possession of guns a 'duty’’ were essential because people were too scared to come forward.

Mr Hogan-Howe, in the running to be the next Metropolitan Police commissioner, said the wall of silence protecting the increasing number of young people drawn into gun crime had to be broken.

In an interview with The Guardian, he said Britain should adopt laws similar to those in Australia "where people have a duty to report information about gun crime to the police".

But he called on the Government to push them further and apply them to firearm victims too frightened of reprisals to press charges.

Wait a minute. English citizens are not allowed to own firearms anymore so how can there be a gun crime problem? So the problem has been redefined.

It isn't just the possession or use of guns in the commission of a crime anymore. The problem is now the people who are terrified of thugs with guns.

Those dirty bastards! How dare they be afraid now that the nanny state has saved them from gun violence! Ingrates! The victims "wall of silence" must be broken, shattered! Teach these ingrates a lesson!

After reading this, I expected Monthy Python's comedy group to burst out of my computer. This is beyind bizarre.

"The challenge is people who survive do not want to complain and the best witness is quite often the victim who can provide a description and motive," he said.

"By refusing to help it can put the investigation on to the back foot."

Let's see if we can get this straight; "The challenge is people who survive..." So if they don't survive there's no problem? Outstanding! The solution is simple. Ban all gunshot victims from receiving medical care at the National Health Service hospitals. This will have gun crimes under control in no time.

His comments come as police chiefs voice growing frustration at the difficulty in tackling gun crime among youths. Mr Hogan-Howe told the newspaper his force was already evicting families that harboured children who possessed guns, and moving them to other areas.

Here in the U.S., several states have reintroduced predators (such as wolves) into parks and game preserves. It sounds like this idea has caught on with the Brits too. I'm sure the unarmed citizenry is overjoyed at this prospect of sharing their habitat with new predator species. Perhaps if the coppers distributed pamphlets on where to report such sightings the locals would be a bit more enthusiastic.

His officers are also instructed to stop and search suspects regularly. The chief constable, who attended a gun crime summit at Downing Street in February, said such initiatives were leading the way in stamping out the problem.

So the Brit's response is predator relocation and gun crime summits. If they are stamping out the problem, then why are more laws required? Then why are police taking action against...

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