British Gun Crime

Discussion in 'Gun-Control Issues' started by Jeff82, Apr 26, 2004.

  1. But don't you see? You're saying exactly what I've been saying all through this discussion! You have your way, we have ours. Neither is better or worse than the other. Our respective countries have developed in the ways which work best for them.

    The frustrating thing for me is to read on here (not from you Ektarr) that people who have no idea about life in the UK, our laws or the way we operate, have the audacity to say that our liberty will in someway be erroded because we do not have the right to have guns. That is what I was referring to as rubbish. I'm sorry but it is.

    The UK and the US have always been the strongest of Allies. When it comes to support and fighting together, the US has no closer friend than the UK. We have a long and happy history together, and long may it continue. As I have stated before, I love the US. I have family in Texas and I enjoy visiting them.
    I just wish some on this forum would stop having such a blinkered view on why the UK is like it is.

    Wanna kill these ads? We can help!
  2. *in best House of Commons voice* HEAR HEAR! ;f

  3. It may interest you to know that even pepper spray / CS is illegal to own here. Under English law it is a class 5 firearm.
    The police in the UK (including myself) routinely carry it and it is used to good effect when required.
  4. Guest

    Agreed. And while it may seem vaquely disloyal, I must share a humorous memory with you...

    I spent 3 years in Berlin, Germany (back in the mid-60's, when it really counted!) and served alongside many Allied forces, including members of the British Security Group. One evening in a favorite International watering hole's men's room, I happened to witness an American G.I. . . . regrettably of the lower order, and deep into the bottle by this time . . . make fun of a somewhat smallish soldier, one of Her Majesty's Royal Highlanders, in his kilts. I believe there was some comment about a man not wearing a skirt. Well, by the time the smoke cleared it was evident that Men do, indeed, occasionally wear such garments and had what it took to demonstrate the fact as well. I believe that particular soldier has, to this day, a remarkably different view of kilts and the men who wear them proudly.

    Just thought you'd enjoy that.
  5. Indeed! Marvellous! ;f

    Jocks are as mad as a box of frogs, but my god, do they make awesome soldiers. Hard as 'kin nails.

    It's a well known fact that a large proportion of the SAS is made up of Scotsmen. It must be something in the mountain water up there!
  6. I have been wondering how the UK could become so messed up. But reading these posts from Englishmen enlightens me.

    How can you guys endorse these politics by saying it's your way?

    Some facts:

    Since guns were banned, gun violence has risen sharply (Shouldn't it be zero now?)

    OC spray is illegal (although it does no permantent damage). Even carrying a large flashlight or a heavy bunch of keys can be be construed as an "offensive weapon". Carrying a pocket knife will get you in jail for 5 years or more.

    Women are therefore advised not to resist a rapist.

    Self defence is illegal, only running away is allowed. There are numerous documented cases including:

    - A woman being convicted because she put barb wire on her property and a burglar hurt himself.
    - An elderly woman being convicted because she scared off a burglar with a replica gun.

    So basically it's like Christmas for the perps, who can do as they please. They can break into a home and don't have to worry if the homeowner is there. For the unlikely event of being caught, they can be sure to only get a slap on the wrist from a court which thinks uncorrigible felons can be rehabilitated.

    As violence is rocketing upwards, the sheep are living in fear and therefore readily accept that their rights are being revoked by the government. I don't only mean the right to keep arms. I refer to obscenities like searches of houses without a warrant, video surveillance everythere (which does no good), general eavesdropping and wiretapping of ALL phone lines and Internet communication, curfews etc. Sounds like sci-fi, but the majority of these measures is already in place or at least discussed.

    You don't have to be a rocket scientist to realize where this is leading. But one has to be a moron not to. Maybe you should read 1984 from George Orwell, who's real name was George BLAIR. Subtle irony here, just like your prime minister Tony Blair.

    But perhaps I shouldn't expect a monarchy's subjects to value things like independence and responsibilty for oneself .

    Feel free to bash me, I just believe that law abiding men and women should have the right to own and carry firearms and to defend themselves against assaults.
  7. Dear Jack Burnham,

    You are, quite simply, wrong. Horribly, horribly wrong.

    Yes gun crime has risen. And yes, keys can be seen as an offensive weapon. As can a rubber chicken, a lemon, or indeed a well seasoned pork joint if it is being carried with the INTENT of being used as a weapon.

    Carrying a knife will not get you in jail for 5 years, I carry a knife on me almost every day, and I am quite within the bounds of the law when doing so. In England, we are not allowed to carry a locking knife, or a fixed blade without good reason to do so (self defence not being such a reason). We can, however, carry a sub-3 inch, folding slipjoint as and when we wish. So, I'd be grateful if you could point me in the direction of this seemingly mandatory term of 5 years, or if one should be so misfortunate, even more? At least take the effort to gather knowledge on the subject before attempting to be condescending.

    And thankyou, sir, for taking the time to truly appreciate our judicial system, law, and law enforcement. Truly, the posting of an idiot. We do have a right to self defence, using reasonable force. Shooting someone who stole your hat does not constitute reasonable force. But, of course, you have your mighty "documented cases", so clearly I am wasting my time and should merely lay down now on my pitiful English soil and await my slow, liberty lacking death.

    Not advised to resist a rapist? I am assuming the person from whom you heard this advice was not in a state known as "sober". I refer you back to "reasonable force", which in the case of rape, goes a long way.
    To paint a picture of my country being a rampant haven for criminals is rich.

    As for your reference to 1984, that is not ironic.

    But hold on. I think that (perhaps) after trawling through such a deformed, sickly post as yours, I feel that I have seen the light. Yes, I must own a gun. That will solve all these make-believe problems, and they shall vanish into thin, free, richeous American air. Right. How does not owning firearms in any way indicate we have any less respect for our independence and individual responsibility?

    But please. Come to England. Break into our houses. No really, go on. I'm sure the police won't mind, nor will the owner of the property. You'd look nice in a jail cell.

    I can only hope that this post has been as arrogant, uninformed and depressing as yours was.

    Kindest regards,
  8. Dear Tempest UK,

    You're right, it's only 4 years, but I'm sure that'll change.
    And I do mean a fixed blade or folder - that's a knife. For opening letters, I have a letter opener. I need to cut wood for example. But thanks for informing me that you may actually carry a 2.5" toothpick or similar.

    Indicating that I might break into a house only reflects the rhetorical state of emergency you're in.

    Instead of fabricating
    posts you might consider trying to explain with reasonable arguments, why law abiding citizens shouldn't be allowed to possess guns for sport shooting, self defence, collecting or whatever lawful purpose that comes to mind.

    Are you so terribly afraid of an inanimate object or of your fellow citizens, who obey laws by the letter?

    Please take a look at nearby Switzerland, that should be possible even in case you're a shortsighted person (which I don't believe).
    In Switzerland, citizens may buy as many firearms as they please, including (with a special permit) fully automatic weapons. And the militiamen (ordinary men who once were in the army) have to keep their state-issued assault rifle along with .223 ammunition at home. We're talking here about half a million FA rifles that easily penetrate most body armour. And guess what: There are WAY less violent crimes, gun crimes and murders in Switzerland than on your disarmed island. There are only two possible explanations:
    a) Guns are not bad and should therefore be allowed for law abiding citizens
    b) the Swiss are a whole lot more peacable, reasonable and responsible than Englishmen.
    Feel free to choose an answer.
    And kindly explain to a slow-witted fellow like me why you don't think your government can trust you with guns, or an evil OC spray.

    Best regards,
  9. First off, I'm anything but "afraid" of guns. I have a keen interest in firearms and always have, and am in the process of applying for a shotgun certificate.

    As for knives, for cutting, may I suggest an axe? And why exactly would you feel the urge to cut some wood walking down the street? If it's for your job, then we can carry a locking knife, fixed blade etc for that purpose just the same as you could, and know we are well within our rights to do so. Whenever I believe I have a need to do so, I will carry a locking knife on me, but in all other cases a SAK or my Spyderco UKPK is more than enough for everyday tasks.
    Being stopped by a PC and being found to have a locking knife on you will not result in said PC throwing you in jail fo 4/5/100 years. Having been in this situation myself, I am fairly sure of this, as this is how I came to be familiar withthe specific knife law regarding the carrying of locking blades. However, if you go about stabbing people with a knife, (a la the linked BBC article) then a hefty jail term is wholly appropriate.

    Rhetorical state of emergency? That is of course what I indicated by poking at your unfounded and uninformed claims.
    Why shouldn't we be allowed to posses firearms for sport shooting? Ahem...we are. Why shouldn't we be allowed to collect them? Because I'd say that 90% of our population has no desire whatsoever to do so. Again I raise the issue of culture, interests will vary from country to country - you in America may find collecting firearms attractive, yet most people here would not. It isn't a problem.

    The Swiss. I'd say they are just naturally more "peaceful" than the Englih. Yet far, far more so than you Americans. Your point is somewhat hypocritical. Find another. In addition, where, exactly, did I state, or otherwise imply that guns were "bad"? They are not, and whenever a gun related crime arises for discussion here, I will be the first person to challenge the view that guns are to blame. The gun is the method of murder, the man is the maker.

    Maybe our government doesn't "allow" us guns because they are just pure damn evil. Maybe. Maybe they put too muh faith in our law enforcement. Perhaps. But you and I both know that is a question better directed to our members of parliament than I.

    More to the point: do we, the lowly Englishmen, need guns or pepper spray?

    Kindest regards,
  10. Not you put your foot in it. We may argue whether you need guns. Your women would surely need some OC spray, or are they supposed to fight off a 200 pounds felon with their bare hands?

    But that's not the question. One may argue you that you don't need:
    - golden watches
    - cars which go more than 70 mph (or whatever is allowed in your country)
    - a property larger than xxx acres
    or even
    - private ownership of means of production

    But in a free country like ours, WE decide what we need. And not the government. Actually, I don't need a lot of the things that I own. But should I be forbidden to buy them because some politician who thinks he's on the moral high grounds says I have no need? Hell, NO.

    Thanks again for informing me that you may use (hand)guns for sports shooting. That's a new one for me.

    And as one member's sig reads: "It's not the bill of needs, it's the Bill of Rights"

    Best regards,
  11. JackBurnham,

    It's a good point you raise, and to be honest I'm not sure where I stand on the issue of OC spray.

    However, we both live in a free country. And you'll find your politicians do indeed take the moral high ground and dictate what you can and cannot own.

    I'm sorry to inform you that, to the best of my knowledge, handguns are not allowed for sport shooting. This is one area in which I will outright say that I do not support our government's stance. Whilst I don't think the answer should be to totally legalise all firearms to anyone displaying a passing interest in owning one in order to greater facilitate sport shooting, I think current legislation should be adapted to allow a wider range of shooting sports, as it is a healthy and rewarding activity that an be enjoyed in total safety. In that respect, we a pretty much limited to shotguns and rifles after the proper documentation is received.

    Kindest regards,
  12. Alright, your words now seem halfway reasonable to me.
    Our views are not as far away as I have previously thought. If you added some tiny things to your last post we could even agree. Armed self defence when reasonable and neccessary as well as guns for anyone with a lawful interest in them come to my mind. But for starters, it's more than fair enough.

    I'm glad you don't completely approve with your governments position on this issue. Having an interest in firearms and GlockTalk, you are about the only one left in the UK who might support gun rights.

    With all the best wishes for your liberty,
  13. Good to see we can see eye to eye ;f

    It's not the concept of using firearms for self defence (or anything else) that I don't agree with, only when it is applied to my country in that state that it is currently in. At the moment, drastic changes to our firearms policies aren't the answer. A few years down the line, maybe, who knows. A slow, controlled introduction to the use of firearms for self defence could work, but to do so public opinion would need to change a great deal, as many people simply couldn't justify carrying a firearm for self defence. And, at times, this includes myself.

    If fate had had me born in the USA, you could quite surely find me owning a good few firearms (Glock 21 being the object of my affection here :) )and a CCW. In England though, at this time we're not ready for such changes. Changes to allow shooting sports, however, we are every bit ready for, and I wish we could be afforded that, but thanks to Blair we are not.

    Kindest regards,
  14. Tempest, according to the history of England and Great Britian as I learned it, the freedoms evolved as a result of the yeomen and their long bows being able to take out obnoxious noblemen, noblemen and their power being able to tell the king off (Magna Carta), and the king being able to use the yeomen and nobles as necessary to keep his power (YES, HUGELY SIMPLIFIED.) The point being that British freedoms were developed because people had weapons, and that was how British development was different than that in Europe.

    When the gun came in, and the longbowmen went out, the commoners (yeomen) started losing their rights. And that was something our founding fathers saw, and was a major reason for the second amendment. To keep government in line as well as self protection.

    As for the loss of freedom issue, where you don't see it, we see something else. FOR EXAMPLE: Your law allows the use of REASONABLE force in self defense. We see that as a loss of freedom, because reasonable is decided by someone after the fact who wasn't there. So a woman who protected herself against a rapist by spraying him with oven cleaner instead of the window cleaner five steps further can be prosecuted. That to us is a HUGE, HUGE loss of freedom.

    Another example: Something bought with the INTENT to use it for self-protection. To us, that is the government telling us what to think, and that we can't think about self protection of what to do if something happens. Again a HUGE loss of freedom, as someone is deciding not only what you did, but what you thought, and making it a crime.

    Now these examples may be overboard to you, but follow me for a minute. We start out with guns are bad, then restrict the guns, then register the guns, the outlaw the guns, then make self-protection iffy, then make other weapons (knives)bad, then etc. We see a trend, and it's one that scares us, because we see the start of it here. And it is a historical trend that has been repeated over and over.

    Maybe you don't see it that way, but we do. So it's not really not "bashing" the British, (at least not too much:) ), it's trying to point out a frightening trend, and the British are the ones following that trend right now. So they're the current example available.

    A couple more points. You said that most people agreed with the bans. But did they? And if they did, did they have full information? In other words, when the automatic weapons slaughter happened, was it just that that was broadcast, like our media here? Or was there some people asking what would have happened if some law abiding people with guns had been there? Have you even asked yourself that question?

    I think that there are two quotes that fit the situation. The first is Lincoln, "You can fool most of the people some of the time."

    The second quote is "Tell a big enough lie, often enough, and it will be believed." Goebbels. (Sorry to bring up that ++++, but even a ++++ gets it right once in a while.)

    And that's the other point. We think that you've been pounded on so long that you're conditioned in that point of view. And that scares us even worse. You didn't used to be a disarmed society, as we read history (and all your murder mysteries;f ). And now you say that you haven't been. That is true, in that it was never as pervasive, but it was there, and people could protect themselves.

    As far as feeling that the English are "wimps", we don't. Any people who can produce four men who are willing to jump on and smother a bomb with their own bodies, as those four did on that subway, may produce some wimps, but it also produces MEN. So here's to TommyT and all the others (here and there) who are willing to put it on the line. ;Y And may the MMQB (Monday Morning QuarterBacks) rot in you know where.

  15. Brown Hawk,

    Whilst you make a good point of our origins, the use of longbows then is not nearly as recent as the emergence of the United States - just because we used weapons then does not mean we have to latch on to that and preserve it many hundreds of years down the line.

    Also, a point about "securing our freedoms" through the use of weapons that I, and a great many others I know of think the Americans have taken "wrongly" (for lack of a better word)is that freedoms may be won with weapons, but the weapons were only there as a requirement of the conflict of that time. After a war or a battle has been won, and the rights of whatever body of people have been secured, those people are in peace; they can put down their arms and enjoy the same rights. So we developed our freedoms with weapons, but that doesn't mean that we now STILL need weapons to continue those freedoms.

    Loss of freedom: you have pretty much summed it up there, we see it differently. "Reasonable force" has recently been a hot topic for debate within British politics, with many calling for a clearer definition (which I would be all for). But this seems to somehow give the impression that, in Britain, whenever someone defends themselves, they will be prosecuted and the criminal lives happily ever after. It's simply not true. A lot of people on these forums also seem to be getting the impresion that our country is a haven for criminals, which again is simply not true (far less true of Britain than of the USA).

    I believe most people did agree with the bans, and whilst there were obviosly those who held firearms (it was generally for target/sport shooting, not SD) who opposed the ban, most did not. Again, our countries were and are very different - even before the bans, guns were far less a part of our culture than in the US, so even when we had the choice to own firearms, the majority of us did not.

    Much of the rest of what you say, I simply disagree with; it is just a matter of opinion.

    The trend itself is frightening; but I couldn't care less about the way it has outlawed guns, except in the cases of sport shooting I mentioned earlier. I collect knives, and the negativity towards them in the media and the government is discomforting. I also enjoy airsoft, and frequently attend games, and as such I bitterly opposed the replica weapon ban, but to no avail. I hope this illustrates that it is not a case of me not caring about my rights, or what the government dictates I should do, but simply that in the case of guns , I do not believe we should have the same rights as you do. In the case of airsoft, whilst I will continue to oppose the decision to ban them whenever I can - it got through parliament without ammendments, and I shall respect that. Whether you like it or not, that bill was passed under the wings of democracy, and I and other airsofters are in the (tiny) minority in our opposition to it.

    "Tell a big enough lie, often enough, and it will be believed." Goebbels

    I could equally apply this to you, and the constant repetition that you need guns to defend your rights, liberty, the life of yourself and your families from nasty nasty invading communism that there is no evidence of, and other such things. It doesn't make it true, just as it doesn't when applied to us.

    Kindest regards,
  16. Tempest,

    I wasn't trying to convince you, just trying to explain some of why we feel the way we do about your gun laws. After all, you are trying to explain yourselves to us. My point on the long bows is that the freedom of your country and mine evolved because of the ready availability of weapons caused the freedoms to evolve more peacefully. The peasants of Europe didn't, and much of their freedoms came through revolution. (Again a simplification.)

    As for the weapons keeping us free, we go back to the founding fathers, who started the whole idea. It was their feeling that freedoms would be lost without constant vigilance. And the freedoms would be lost to their own government, not foreign invaders. As a nation, we still don't trust the government. Even most of our liberals don't when it comes to THEIR rights. (Ask Robert Kennedy Jr. about the propeller farm off the coast of his property.) They just think they know better than us how to spend our money.

    Loss of freedom: yes, they were extreme examples, but I made them that way to make the point. And the point is WHO decides? I could be wrong here, but we look at a law and ask, "What would my worst enemy do with this law?" If I am reading you right, (and please correct me if I am not,) you ask "What would a reasonable person do with this law?" We don't trust govenrment to be reasonable, and we think that we have pretty good historical evidence to back it up. Including Lord Acton [sp?] and his "Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power tends to corrupt absolutely."

    As far as defending ourselves from the invading commies, the Japanese, Germans and Soviets were worried about that according to their own documentation. Most of us aren't. It's more a matter of where will they stop if they take this away? The constant vigilance thing. If they don't get to the beach, they can't make a beachead. The banning of Airsoft is something we see as a taking away of freedom. It is hurting no one, it costs people who aren't involved nothing, and can be a lot of fun. But now a majority has decided it's bad, and a harmless minority is being oppressed. You may not agree with that specific interpertation, but you are fighting the ban.

    You don't see weapons as necessary to protect your freedoms, and we do. I think the difference comes in the fact that Britian has long been a homogenous country, with people born there raised the same way with the same beliefs. Here, many people, many ideas, raised and taught differently. Some without the English respect for law, as their laws were harsh and unjust. Without respect for life, etc. So the self defense aspect is more readily visible here. Your police could remain unarmed as most criminals felt they would be treated right there, and both sides can "understand" each other. (Bad way to put it, but I'm not sure how else to put it.)

    We don't see that the need of guns to defend freedom as a lie. Our history and other's would give good evidence for that. In fact, most of Britain's history seems to run counter to that of other nation's in this regard. Maybe it's the exception that proves the rule. ;f

    On of my history teachers had a favorite story of WWII. A German officer and a Swiss officer were talking one day. The German says to the Swiss.

    "We have you surrounded. If you upset us, we can invade you with an army that has twice as many men as you have people. What would you do then?"

    And the Swiss replied, "We'd all shoot twice.";a

    We're not going to agree, and that's fine. I am using this to try to understand your point of view, and explain ours. Probably, the best we can get to is that you're not wimps waiting to be used as dishrags, just different, and we're not paranoid gun nuts, just different. And not that different. After all, we still stand by each other when the SHTF.

    Best wishes, (gotta be a little different;) )

  17. That's fine, you've given the best explanation in this thread so far :)

    I've said it earlier in this thread, but should I ever decide to live in America (something I've given serious thought, can't accuse me of being against all things America ;) )then I would exercise my right to bear arms, for some of the reasons you have pointed out. It's just that those reasons don't apply in the same way to England. You were reading me right, and yes, we do (generally) trust our government more than you might, hence why you can't apply the same reasoning to Britain that you do the US.

    We'll just agree to disagree then, having now voiced our opinions (nice story by the way :cool: )
  18. Tempest,

    Agreeing to disagree is good.

    But another question on the same topic. Does the influx of immigrants, legal and illegal, seem to be changing things? Over here we hear that they don't want to assimilate, which could change your society. Also, is the increase in gun crime related to that, or is the "normal" British criminal using guns more?

    And yeah, there's a couple of assumptions there, which you are free to correct.

    Best wishes


    P.S. Glad somebody appreciates it. The professor only told it about twenty times;Q. (But it did make his points.)

    PPS Where's Bucks? Can't find it on the map.
  19. I'm sure the increased immigration has had an impact on gun crime here, though even if the "high-ups" new this for sure, they would be far too PC to even suggest such a thing ;Q

    I'm sure it's a similar situation in some circumstances in the US, but to even hint at immigration being a problem here will have you branded as a far-right extremist/racist. So when it comes to gun crime, such things rarely get proper consideration or investigation.

    As for Bucks:
    Even more information that you could possibly be interested in reading :)


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