Sunday, September 9, 2007

Strict Gun Control Works---To Empower Criminals

Richard Munday in the London Times Online has a column decrying the failure of strict gun control in Great Britain, which has totally disarmed its law abiding subjects (I almost said citizens, but unarmed subjects aren’t truly citizens, at least in the eyes of their government). The author points to recent events in the U.S. and cites differences and similarities in the violent crime rates in both countries.

Virginia Tech reinforced the lesson that gun controls are obeyed only by the law-abiding. New York has "banned" pistols since 1911, and its fellow murder capitals, Washington DC and Chicago, have similar bans. One can draw a map of the US, showing the inverse relationship of the strictness of its gun laws, and levels of violence: all the way down to Vermont, with no gun laws at all, and the lowest level of armed violence (one thirteenth that of Britain).


In Britain, however, the image of violent America remains unassailably entrenched. Never mind the findings of the International Crime Victims Survey (published by the Home Office in 2003), indicating that we now suffer three times the level of violent crime committed in the United States; never mind the doubling of handgun crime in Britain over the past decade, since we banned pistols outright and confiscated all the legal ones.


As late as 1951, self-defence was the justification of three quarters of all applications for pistol licences. And in the years 1946-51 armed robbery, the most significant measure of gun crime, ran at less than two dozen incidents a year in London; today, in our disarmed society, we suffer as many every week.

Gun controls disarm only the law-abiding, and leave predators with a freer hand. Nearly two and a half million people now fall victim to crimes of violence in Britain every year, more than four every minute: crimes that may devastate lives. It is perhaps a privilege of those who have never had to confront violence to disparage the power to resist.
(Bold mine)
So, in the U.S., in states where law abiding citizens can legally carry firearms for self defense, crime rates are much lower than areas where it's strictly forbidden. And in Britain, where it's people are totally disarmed, they're suffering an even worse epidemic of violent crime. It's an interesting article, worthy of your time to read the whole thing.