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Subject: guns for the UK?
paul1970    9/11/2007 12:32:17 PM
current thread on weapons board about guncrime in US going down because they have legal ownership. and some thinking that we need guns in the UK. what are the views of UK posters? my own is that the US situation is different than the UK and that more legal ownership here would only mean more criminals would turn to guns and this would increase the number of firearm crimes and deaths. Paul
 
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flamingknives       9/11/2007 2:39:16 PM
On what do you base your position paul?

When handguns were legal, crimes involving them were much lower than they are now.

Reverting to the previous set of laws regarding firearms would be no bad thing (a little trust, please, Mr. Prime Minister, or will you continue treating the common man with contempt not seen since the French monarchy?) But I would not recommend the situation in the US. To hold a gun for self-defence implies, to me, a great deal of paranoia, which is not healthy for a large country like the US, much less a smaller, densely populated country with lots of nearly equivalent neighbours like the UK.


 
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bob the brit       9/11/2007 5:44:44 PM
i think there are too many contributing factors withing the uk to simply say handgun ban=more gun based crime and no handgun ban=less gun based crime. factors such as increased multiculturalism, larger base number of firearms, increased urban population, are just a fraction of variables that can be thrown into the vast equation of handguns and their relation to gun violence. at the moment it seems people are in two categories (could be wrong but this is my interpretation): there are some that follow some kind of logical thought saying legal handguns = more handguns = more gun violence; and others that look at simple stats and say 'when handguns were legal there was less gun based violence. i personally don't know where i stand right now, but i agree with flamingknives that handguns for personal defence gives off a sense of paranoia. and i think our police officers look a little less imposing without them strapped to their sides
 
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paul1970       9/12/2007 6:30:14 AM

On what do you base your position paul?

When handguns were legal, crimes involving them were much lower than they are now.

Reverting to the previous set of laws regarding firearms would be no bad thing (a little trust, please, Mr. Prime Minister, or will you continue treating the common man with contempt not seen since the French monarchy?) But I would not recommend the situation in the US. To hold a gun for self-defence implies, to me, a great deal of paranoia, which is not healthy for a large country like the US, much less a smaller, densely populated country with lots of nearly equivalent neighbours like the UK.




the relationship between legal ownership and illegal use are seperate...
 
using rising figures to conclude that the ban is to blame is a simplistic argument that does not take into account the many factors involved.... and the rises are not consistant by any means... also take into account when people say big % rise..... we still have less than 100 gun deaths a year... 2 or 3 more than the year before is a big % rise....
 
I could make two easy simple conclusions about the Iraq surge....
the surge is working because the civilian violent deaths are down from 3500 a month to 3000....   or
the surge is not working because the civilian violent deaths are only down from 3500 a month to 3000....
both can be true and both can be untrue. 3000-3500 is a bloody big number
there are many factors other than the surge at work with regards to civilian deaths so the surge is not the be all and end all to the argument. (one for another thread though)
 
 
 
the people being targetted with guns after the ban are not the ones who don't have guns anymore....  guns are very rarely used in break ins...  we never had guns in public so there is no decrease in detterent for the criminal from the ban....
 
the ban was more to do with stopping rampages, by "he was always very quiet and normal" people when they flip... we have not had one since the ban.... but we have had a couple of nutters with samurai swords (which could potentially been gun rampages), than aimed at stopping the "professional" criminal... it also had the added benefit that it took at a lot of guns from circulation and most gun crime was being commited with stolen legally held guns...
 
if people want to go shooting then store guns at a gun club....... those previously held at home still had to be locked up and were not under the pillow at night for self defense.....so not much of a detterent...  the number of guns used in self defense over the last 20-30 years has been miniscule.... 
 
the biggest detterent to break ins are dogs.... they make noise and wake people up... that is the last thing a burgular wants as it decreases his chance of getting in and out with anything without being confronted....
 
 
 
our current problem is with the gang culture and them escalating from fists, to knives, to guns.... this accounts for many of the incidences of gun use now.
 
I have also mentioned that our violent crime needs to be broken down to who is doing what to whom and when... you will then see most of it is our "yob culture"... these would be the same people legally carrying fireams under an open system... a few drinks in them and instead of casualty units being full or cut lips and broken noses, there would be morgues full of body bags.....   basically, I wouldn't trust these people to have guns...
 
 
 
 
Paul
 
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flamingknives       9/12/2007 2:21:09 PM
Paul, don't be obtuse and don't build yourself a strawman. I'd appreciate the courtesy of replying to what I've posted, not what you can answer.

"the relationship between legal ownership and illegal use are seperate...
 
using rising figures to conclude that the ban is to blame is a simplistic argument that does not take into account the many factors involved.... and the rises are not consistant by any means... also take into account when people say big % rise..... we still have less than 100 gun deaths a year... 2 or 3 more than the year before is a big % rise....."

If legal ownership and illegal use are separate, why ban guns? You have the link to the data in the other thread, which clearly shows that there is a large and consistant rise in violent crime involving handguns in the seven years subsequent to the ban when compared to the seven years preceeding it. This is not a big percentage point rise, it's a big rise in absolute numbers. Thus, banning guns held for sport does not reduce crime, so banning guns is clearly not the answer to the problem of violent crime involving firearms. All you do is penalise law-abiding people on the basis of an irrational, emotional response.

I feel that I need to point out that legal ownership of guns and the state of play in the US are very different things. The current state of play regarding rifles in the UK is, to me, sensible. It is more sensible when the firearm and a critical piece of the action are stored separately. Storing them all in a gun club, which tend to be located in the arse-end of nowhere, would seem to be a foolish way of doing things. I would not make that mandatory, however, since there are people who could quite legitimately have cause to store both weapon and action in one place - remote farms etc.

The handgun ban to prevent rampages was a nonsensical overreaction. To draw a comparison, the number of people killed in either of the two rampages in the past forty years was less than one half of one percent of the fatalities on Britain's roads in 2005, which was the lowest for that same forty year period.
 
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paul1970       9/13/2007 5:37:26 AM

Paul, don't be obtuse and don't build yourself a strawman. I'd appreciate the courtesy of replying to what I've posted, not what you can answer.

"the relationship between legal ownership and illegal use are seperate...
 
using rising figures to conclude that the ban is to blame is a simplistic argument that does not take into account the many factors involved.... and the rises are not consistant by any means... also take into account when people say big % rise..... we still have less than 100 gun deaths a year... 2 or 3 more than the year before is a big % rise....."

If legal ownership and illegal use are separate, why ban guns? You have the link to the data in the other thread, which clearly shows that there is a large and consistant rise in violent crime involving handguns in the seven years subsequent to the ban when compared to the seven years preceeding it. This is not a big percentage point rise, it's a big rise in absolute numbers. Thus, banning guns held for sport does not reduce crime, so banning guns is clearly not the answer to the problem of violent crime involving firearms. All you do is penalise law-abiding people on the basis of an irrational, emotional response.

I feel that I need to point out that legal ownership of guns and the state of play in the US are very different things. The current state of play regarding rifles in the UK is, to me, sensible. It is more sensible when the firearm and a critical piece of the action are stored separately. Storing them all in a gun club, which tend to be located in the arse-end of nowhere, would seem to be a foolish way of doing things. I would not make that mandatory, however, since there are people who could quite legitimately have cause to store both weapon and action in one place - remote farms etc.

The handgun ban to prevent rampages was a nonsensical overreaction. To draw a comparison, the number of people killed in either of the two rampages in the past forty years was less than one half of one percent of the fatalities on Britain's roads in 2005, which was the lowest for that same forty year period.


 
 
the gun ban was very little to do with criminal use of guns... it was all in response to Dunblane.. you call this nonsense... this just shows the difference in reaction to guns that the US has to the UK... you are happy to live with the murderous rampages that happen every few years... we were not.
 
 
 
you say there is a large increase in the use of guns....greta,  tell me where they are being used????? and now tell how people keeping guns locked up at home would have impact on these uses???????? that is the important thing... legal guns at hom
 
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NATO OF-2 RN       9/13/2007 12:36:58 PM
Hello all, one-time 'Horrible Sailor' here (I've not posted in such a long time I image most people have forgotten me anyway and thought the name needed a little updating - I have been following most of the threads though).

Flamingknives - I'm not sure I follow your accusation that paul1970 was building a straw man and avoiding your points.

I quite agree that the ban on handguns in the UK was a reaction to public outcry over the Dunblane massacre.  From what I pick up on the news similar massacres seem to happen fairly regularly in the US but a national mentality that holds guns in higher regard appears, from my standpoint, to over-ride any anti-gun hysteria.  The gun lobby wasn't nearly so powerful in the UK so the public outcry saw them banned.  Personally, whilst I've no problem using a firearm in my day-job if so required, I'm happy that the public don't have legal home access to them.

Rising gun crime, as paul1970 rightly points out, has far more to do with society.  It's tempting to overstate the problem, but certainly in my lifetime gang culture has degraded society to the point where people don't feel as safe as they should on the streets.  Hell walking through town alone one night, I was beaten up by a gang of under-16s for no reason other than they wanted to inflict pain on someone.  Life is much cheaper now on some of our streets and there are a whole raft of social factors to blame for this.  Handguns being illegal is certainly not one of them.
 
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flamingknives       9/14/2007 9:33:26 AM
Right. For the hard-of-understanding, a strawman argument is a technique whereby a person, in this case paul1970, invents a position that he knows (or believes) that he can defeat and attributes it to a person, in this case, me, in lieu of debating what that person has actually stated.

To whit:
"the gun ban was very little to do with criminal use of guns... it was all in response to Dunblane.. you call this nonsense... this just shows the difference in reaction to guns that the US has to the UK... you are happy to live with the murderous rampages that happen every few years... we were not."

First off, I live in the UK. I have never so much as been to the US.
I call it nonsensical overreaction. This is what it was.
Twice in four decades is not "every few years". Especially when police incompetance in enforcing the law as it stood was mainly to blame for one of them.

"you say there is a large increase in the use of guns....greta,  tell me where they are being used????? and now tell how people keeping guns locked up at home would have impact on these uses???????? that is the important thing... legal guns at home would have little impact... legal guns carried out in public might but I have already said why I would not want to see this..." 

So this is a direct response to my posts. I have never, not once, anywhere, stated that more legal guns meant less crime. Anywhere. Get this into your head and keep it there, because it is important. 

What I have stated, with data provided by the Home Office, is that there was no reduction of crime following the gun ban. Thus, less guns does not automatically equal less gun crime. As noted, there are far too many variables to account for, and removing one has demonstrably had no effect.

This was in response to paul1970:
"my own [view] is that the US situation is different than the UK and that more legal ownership here would only mean more criminals would turn to guns and this would increase the number of firearm crimes and deaths." 

If you want to argue about guns held for self-defence, go and find Herald1234 or RockyMTNClimber. I do not agree that guns for self-defence is a good idea, or that guns should be freely available. The former implies that such a person would acquire guns with intent to kill another, the latter means that any unrestricted yahoo could get himself some firepower.

I reiterate my point:
Guns, in cl
 
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paul1970       9/14/2007 10:40:58 AM

Right. For the hard-of-understanding, a strawman argument is a technique whereby a person, in this case paul1970, invents a position that he knows (or believes) that he can defeat and attributes it to a person, in this case, me, in lieu of debating what that person has actually stated.

To whit:
"the gun ban was very little to do with criminal use of guns... it was all in response to Dunblane.. you call this nonsense... this just shows the difference in reaction to guns that the US has to the UK... you are happy to live with the murderous rampages that happen every few years... we were not."

First off, I live in the UK. I have never so much as been to the US.
I call it nonsensical overreaction. This is what it was.
Twice in four decades is not "every few years". Especially when police incompetance in enforcing the law as it stood was mainly to blame for one of them.

"you say there is a large increase in the use of guns....greta,  tell me where they are being used????? and now tell how people keeping guns locked up at home would have impact on these uses???????? that is the important thing... legal guns at home would have little impact... legal guns carried out in public might but I have already said why I would not want to see this..." 

So this is a direct response to my posts. I have never, not once, anywhere, stated that more legal guns meant less crime. Anywhere. Get this into your head and keep it there, because it is important. 

What I have stated, with data provided by the Home Office, is that there was no reduction of crime following the gun ban. Thus, less guns does not automatically equal less gun crime. As noted, there are far too many variables to account for, and removing one has demonstrably had no effect.

This was in response to paul1970:
"my own [view] is that the US situation is different than the UK and that more legal ownership here would only mean more criminals would turn to guns and this would increase the number of firearm crimes and deaths." 

If you want to argue about guns held for self-defence, go and find Herald1234 or RockyMTNClimber. I do not agree that guns for self-defence is a good idea, or that guns should be freely available. The former implies that such a person would acquire guns with intent to kill another, the latter means that any unrestricted yahoo could get himself some firepower.

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NATO OF-2 RN       9/14/2007 10:53:32 AM
I completely agree with Paul1970.

Flamingknives - I'm aware of what a straw man argument is; I didn't agree that Paul1970 was using one.

I don't quite follow where you both agree that UK citizens should be allowed to fire guns in gun clubs.  Surely they are already?

 
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flamingknives       9/14/2007 12:23:17 PM
NATO OF-2 RN:
Handguns, old bean.

The crux of the matter is this:
"my own [view] is that the US situation is different than the UK and that more legal ownership here would only mean more criminals would turn to guns and this would increase the number of firearm crimes and deaths." 

Where previously, more guns were legally held, firearms crimes and deaths were lower.

However Paul may wish to change positions, that was his original.

Also, the link to rampages was also off. Comparison with the US is clearly not logical, as they have fundamentally different gun laws to those we have had here. Either of the rampages in the UK could have been stopped by improved security of firearms or the simple expedient of the police doing their jobs when other members of a shooting club voiced their concern.
 
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