Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Guns, American "Cowboys" And Whatnot

The usual vast blank white space, a gaping maw of Write. Something. Now. stares at me and the topic(s) that are most bubblin' have yet to coalesce. So I'm just riffin'.

Kevin (The Smallest Minority) Baker linked to a Rachel Lucas posting about firearms and the UK with a long and fascinating debate in the comments section; at one point one of the anti-gun UK subjects commenting remarked on the "appalling disregard for human life" in the U.S. as compared to the UK, citing our gun laws vs. theirs and it gives me to think.

Let's see, after the tragedy of Dunblane, did the Brits come to the conclusion that nutters represent a danger to the young? Did they decide that school security was too lax, or that persons wanting to work with children needed more careful vetting? Maybe they raised an outcry for better access to mental health services? Were teachers trained and armed in the manner of their Israeli counterparts? Did the Brits, in accord with their previous trends, demand better screening of persons applying for firearms licenses? Oh, hell no: they blamed the tool. 'Cos loonies would never, ever torch a school full of kids, or walk in with a sledgehammer. What kind of "regard for human life" does that indicate? Are there any humans even in the focus at all?

With the ban on guns handguns,* knife crime is up in the UK, so much so that swords and knives are getting banned, too. No one, no newspaper, no M.P. or Mayor, no nobody is callin' to even look into what the problem is that so many Crown subjects, the majority of them young men, are turnin' to predatory violence. People? What're they? Take the knives away! --Cos that shows, you know, "regard for human life." The bad 'uns and their victims, forgotten, and now the poor darlings will just have to pick up a brick or a cobblestone or a cricket bat, while their victims are sternly warned never to carry, let alone use, use anything that might be deemed an "offensive" weapon.

Lecture me about the American "disregard for human life," willya? At least we give the victims a chance to fight back; for that matter, given that the vast majority of defensive gun use incidents do not result in someone on a slab, it could be we even give the aggressor a good, strong incentive to re-examine his chosen path, too.

And people wonder why, with my MGB and my (sadly, now lapsed) RSGB membership, I am not the least interested in visiting the UK; lovely though much of it is, I strongly suspect their "regard for human life" will get me stomped flat.
* There's a gun-fearing lad (who's hoping to get sued by a gunblogger, or perhaps it's luuuuv) who pointed out, quite correctly, that Britain does not have a total ban on all guns. They've a near-total ban on handguns, while long-arms require begging permission for each one from the local authorities, who have complete discretion over not only if you may have them but how much ammunition you may possess and the manner in which they are to be stored -- and they do check. Compared to the freedom to keep and bear arms enjoyed by even citizens in Massachusetts or Illinois, it's a ban. Also? I am not all-knowing. Oh, the horror, how can any of you ever trust me again? And why should you when you are hooked into the greatest engine for finding out for yourself yet invented? Anything you wonder about, go look it up. And if you'd like, you can come back and tell me where I got the facts wrong. Go team you!


Fuzzy Curmudgeon said...

It's amazing sometimes that the simplistic formulations like "guns don't kill people, people kill people" and "when guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns" turn out to have so much juicy truth packed into them.

The Canadians seem to be starting to understand this. I'm not sure the Brits ever will.

Turk Turon said...

Great post! I linked to it.

Frank W. James said...

I used to visit the UK regularly, but I haven't been back since they reclassified 'handguns' as Section V weapons (same as machine guns). A member of the Board of Governors at Bisley explained it best to me in a face to face conversation, "They treated all of us law-biding gun owners like a bunch of errant children. We had NO input to this decision and NO consideration."

The country and their government's mindset truly reminds me of what I've read about Nazi Germany prior to WWII.

All The Best,
Frank W. James

Crucis said...

An apt description of the phenomena postulated on Rachel's blog was "serf mentality" to explain the thinking of the current brit mindset---the expectation that someone will protect and care for you. That assumption is patently false.

A review of history will show that serfs are viewed as property, prey for predators and the feudal lords care more for their own benefit than to those of the serfs.

Serfdom is returning to europe.

Stranger said...

A surprising number of the Brits I talk to are coming to their senses. Almost all the expat Brits have.

Chief Inspector Colin Greenwood has a good book (doctoral thesis so it is peer reviewed) and many further links for those who would like more info. I have a brief discussion of gun controls and other idiocies on my blog. With a few dozen gigabytes digitized and much much more to come.

Briefly, gun control laws have the same effect on violent crime as a five gallon bucket of gasoline (Petrol if you are debating a Brit) thrown on a bonfire.

Borepatch said...

we lived there for a year in the mid-1990s, and it was a great experience. However, it seems noticeably different now when I go back (business travel). London is getting dangerous.

I was pretty oblivious when we lived over there, but nowadays Condition White will get you a Bad Day.

I'd much rather go to New York City than London; it's much safer.

DBA Dude said...

From what I read it appears to be easier now to obtain an illegal hand gun in our cities over here now compared to before the ban.

What we really need over here is a constitution which defines our civil rights and limits what our government can get away with.

If I got the chance to jump ship to somewhere with a more tolerant attitude on home/self defence I would be off in a flash.

Sully said...

Who says guns are banned in the UK?

Look, if you can't get your facts straight on a simple point--why should we believe anything you have to say?

Roberta X said...

So, Sully, where do you keep your loaded, fully-functional 1911A1 pistol, since there's no gun ban in the UK?

Last time I checked, Brits could possess some long guns but could hardly carry them as readily as we do in the U.S., while handguns were entirely banned from private possession. You got data to contradict that, better trot it out, pronto. (And citing Northern Ireland, the Isle of Man and/or Channel islands is out, let's stick to England, Scotland and Wales).

--Compared to me, Britons are disarmed. And I'm a middle-aged spinster of modest means.