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Does the UK want a "Tony Martin" law?

Tim Baker
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Joined: Oct 04, 2003
Posts: 541
The UK as a whole is not a violent society which is probably why the robbery rate is higher. The fact that the murder rate is rising in the UK is actually in direct correlation to the increase in the availability of illegal handguns, with cheap imports coming from eatern europe. Trying to link the increase in gun control to the robbery rate is a complete farce. Even when it was legal to own certain handguns virtually nobody did, so it was not a deterrent to burglars. The fact that illegal handguns have become rampant in the gangs has not been a detterent to gang activity, which has skyrocketed.
Most people in england who own handguns, particularly illegal ones, are intending to use them for criminal activity. Hunting guns such as those owned by my grandfather and other farm style guns of course can be owned without the intention to commit a crime.


Kim Jong II (North Korea's Dear Leader) said:Nuclear weapons don't kill people, people kill people.
Joe Pluta
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Joined: Jun 23, 2003
Posts: 1376
Originally posted by Tony Collins:
Homicide Rate Per 100,000 people
U.S.A 5.64
England & Wales 1.61
web page

Tony, I followed your link and I don't see anything like what you posted. I saw a five-year-old list of homicide rates per city in which Washington had an incredibly high number, followed by several other American cities in the low double digits (the page is so old that when I went back, the pictures don't even show up anymore).
I don't know where they got their numbers, but it was a long time ago. Currently, the numbers are more like this:
New York City: 8,000,000 people, 586 murders, 7.5 murders per 100,000
Los Angeles: 3,700,000 people, 500 murders, 13.5 murders per 100,000
Chicago: 2,900,000 people, 599 murders, 20.5 murders per 100,000
Washington DC: 570,000 people, 231 murders, 40.5 murders per 100,000
All of these numbers are at or lower than the number cited in the 1998 article, in some cases significantly so. As Jason points out, the trend is probably even more important than the snapshot data, and the crime statistics in America are dropping across the board.
By the way, the US metropolitan area with the highest homicide rate is Washington, D.C. The ironic thing? D.C. is one of the few places in the country that has a handgun ban.
Joe
Joe Pluta
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Joined: Jun 23, 2003
Posts: 1376
The UK as a whole is not a violent society which is probably why the robbery rate is higher.
You don't consider robbery a violent crime?
Joe
Michael Morris
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Joined: Jan 30, 2002
Posts: 3451
The Source for Violent Crime Stats in the US.
An interesting animation showing the trends by age


Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius - and a lot of courage - to move in the opposite direction. - Ernst F. Schumacher
Tony Collins
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Joined: Jul 03, 2003
Posts: 435
Originally posted by Jason Menard:

The murder rate in Scotland is about twice that of England and Wales.

ATC: In England people who have guns are those that intend to use them in a premeditated fashion( and that's not for robbing houses ).
You mean in a premeditated fashion, such as hunting?
[ January 03, 2004: Message edited by: Jason Menard ]

Murder rate twice as high in Scotland ?!? What between sheep.
Guns are used to settle drug disputes almost exclusively in this country. The average bloke has almost zero risk of being shot.
Joe the stats on murder rate across the country are from a different source than the article. I'm sure a quick search on google will confirm them for you.
Tony
[ January 03, 2004: Message edited by: Tony Collins ]
Joe Pluta
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Joined: Jun 23, 2003
Posts: 1376
Originally posted by Tony Collins:
Joe the stats on murder rate across the country are from a different source than the article.

Well, the article is certainly well out of date. Your stats may be correct, I don't know. And even if they are, in the UK crimes such as robbery far outpace similar crimes in the States. Would you rather have a 1/18000 chance of being shot or 1/100 chance of being robbed?
And in any event, the numbers in the US are dropping. The point is that the US is not the lawless place you would have us believe. In fact, according to the figures from the Home Office, more violent crimes happen per capita in the UK than in the US. And the most violent place in the country is one which has had a handgun ban for over 25 years.
Joe
Tim Baker
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Joined: Oct 04, 2003
Posts: 541
Originally posted by Joe Pluta:
The UK as a whole is not a violent society which is probably why the robbery rate is higher.
You don't consider robbery a violent crime?
Joe

Obviously not.
Axel Janssen
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Joined: Jan 08, 2001
Posts: 2164
I strongly doubt there is any correlation between handguns allowed or not and crime rate.

The fact its not allowed for me to take gun with me when buying newspaper in neighbourhood shop is based on traditions. I think if they would allow anybody here to wear gun, it would result in more murder first, because people are lacking experience in using it.
HS Thomas
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Joined: May 15, 2002
Posts: 3404
27,000 fewer cars were stolen last year. Stolen cars is what is figures most in the robbery figures IMO. It seems hardly worth using arms as either insurance covers the loss or the car is retraced.
Homicide is usually drug-related as Tony and Tim suggest. Murders within families (where one member kills one or more) is usually by drowning them in the bath or locking them up in the garage leaving the car engine running.
Agatha Christie-ish poisoning seems to be outdated now. Very rarely are guns used for getting rid of family members. The other methods take some planning to do whereas guns can be used in the heat of the moment and are best avoided.
What's this about homicidal sheep ?
[ January 03, 2004: Message edited by: HS Thomas ]
Joe Pluta
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Joined: Jun 23, 2003
Posts: 1376
JP: You don't consider robbery a violent crime?
TB: Obviously not.
Here in America, robbery is considered a violent crime. Robbery is defined to be the "taking of personal property of another from the other's person or presence by force or intimidation with the intent to permanently deprive him of it". There must be force involved, and the victim must be present. Robbery is considered a felony in all states.
And in the UK? The government agrees, since the Home Office groups robbery in with its violent crimes statistics (see my previous citation).
So basically both governments agree that robbery is a violent crime. Saying it's not is a novel attempt to keep violence statistics down, but I don't think it's a valid one.
Joe
Tim Baker
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Joined: Oct 04, 2003
Posts: 541
You'll actually find that a large proportion of recent increases in robbery comes from people yanking mobile phones out of others hands in the street and then legging it. Most of the time it's just a snatch. I don't consider that to be a violent crime, but the statistics probably do. It's certainly no basis to make moral judgements from.
Jason Menard
Sheriff

Joined: Nov 09, 2000
Posts: 6450
Originally posted by Tony Collins:
Murder rate twice as high in Scotland ?!? What between sheep.

Homicide in Britain: A Comparative Study of Rates in Scotland and England & Wales
TC: Guns are used to settle drug disputes almost exclusively in this country.
Do you have anything that backs up this statement? Let's assume for a moment that this is true. Would the rising level of handgun violence then correlate to an increase in drug activity in England?
TC: The average bloke has almost zero risk of being shot.
I could make a similar claim regarding the US, but I probably couldn't back it up either.
Jason Menard
Sheriff

Joined: Nov 09, 2000
Posts: 6450
Originally posted by Tim Baker:
You'll actually find that a large proportion of recent increases in robbery comes from people yanking mobile phones out of others hands in the street and then legging it. Most of the time it's just a snatch. I don't consider that to be a violent crime, but the statistics probably do. It's certainly no basis to make moral judgements from.

I'd be interested in seeing studies that support this conclusion. In any event, the statistics definitively show that violent crime rates are higher in the UK than in the US. While I personally don't care one way or another, it does seem to point out the flawed arguments for gun control, and the even more ridiculous arguments that paint the United States as this ultra-violent place where people are prisoner's in their own homes and automobiles.
Britain, Australia top U.S. in violent crime
The International Crime Victims Survey, conducted by Leiden University in Holland, found that England and Wales ranked second overall in violent crime among industrialized nations.
Twenty-six percent of English citizens -- roughly one-quarter of the population -- have been victimized by violent crime. Australia led the list with more than 30 percent of its population victimized.
The United States didn't even make the "top 10" list of industrialized nations whose citizens were victimized by crime.

Gun Control Misses the Target
Let us look at England then. Since the British government banned virtually all private gun ownership in 1997, crime has skyrocketed. Violent crime has more than doubled in the last five years. England's overall crime rate actually leads Western nations -- including the United States.
Even the UK's historically low homicide rate is under fire. While violent crime has been falling for the past 10 years in America, murders in England are increasing. Twenty years ago there were 8.7 homicides in the United States for every homicide in England, a startling disparity that gun-control supporters never failed to celebrate as proof of their cause. Today, that ratio has dropped to as low as 3.5 to 1, but the gun-control movement is strangely silent about that.
...
Something else gun-control zealots conveniently omit from their discussion of crime and violence is Switzerland. In that peaceful little mountain country the average household contains three guns, comparable to the situation in Texas. From the age of 20, Swiss males are required to keep an assault rifle for purposes of national defense. The Swiss government actually sells surplus military rifles to the citizenry, and a permit to carry a concealed handgun is easily obtained. Despite that nation's "love affair" with firearms, Switzerland enjoys the lowest crime rate in Europe.
If guns cause crime, someone forgot to tell the Swiss. If gun control is the answer to violence, someone forgot to tell the English.

Guns and Violence
Did you know that defensive gun use prevents far more crimes than the police do? National polls of defensive gun use by private citizens indicate that as many as 3.6 million crimes annually are prevented by armed individuals.
In 98 percent of the cases, the armed citizen merely has to brandish his weapon. As many as 400,000 people each year believe they saved a life by being armed. Contrary to Handgun Control's propaganda, in fewer than 1 percent of confrontations do criminals succeed in taking the gun from the intended victim.
Did you know that the testimony of incarcerated felons supports the large number of defensive gun uses? Thirty-four percent of felons said they were scared off, wounded or captured by victims who turned out to be armed.
Convicted felons say that they are more deterred by armed victims than by the police. In the United States, where roughly 50 percent of households are armed, only 13 percent of burglaries occur with residents at home. In contrast, in Britain, where homeowners are disarmed, 50 percent of home burglaries take place with the residents present.
Tim Baker
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Joined: Oct 04, 2003
Posts: 541
Switzerland is an extremely rich country and an extremely happy and friendly country. To claim their low crime rates are a result of their lax gun controls is unfounded. I would say it is the other way around. In a coutnry with such a low crime rate you can afford the freedoms of possesing firearms.
I would expect that a burglar would be more afraid of a homeowner with a firearm than they would the police because the homeowner is more likely to act rashly. They know the police have rules and training and as long as they don't threaten them they are unlikely to get shot.
What would be interesting to know is how many intrusions result in fatalities to the occupants, the rates of who is home or not is irrelevent unless the same levels of gun possesion exist on both sides.
You say that crimes are prevented by showing a gun, but these are unlikely to be the serious crimes. IF someone breaks in to steal your telly and sees a gun he's obviously going to leg it smart.
So maybe in few cases the criminal gets hold of your gun, but what are the statistics for accidents at home with guns?
I'm sure there are lots of statistics for both sides that prove whatever you want to believe.
Michael Morris
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Joined: Jan 30, 2002
Posts: 3451
I'm sure there are lots of statistics for both sides that prove whatever you want to believe.
And that's the whole problem here. Obviously neither the US nor the UK is a utopia. We both have our problems with violent crime. What I don't understand is why any rational person believes that eliminating the right to own firearms has any effect at all on crime or homicide rates. There have always been criminals and there shall always be criminals. You will never be completely rid of firearms because no government on the face of this earth is ever going to relinquish the right to defend itself with a military and that means there must be firearms. So if firearms exist, the criminal elements will always have them legal or not. I personally don't have a problem with licensing gun owners and requiring safety training. Things are a lot different now than when I grew up when a father's duty was to instruct his son in the safe use of guns. That doesn't happen as often now so you have more accidents and a lack of respect for the awesome power that these instruments have. But IMHO taking the guns out of the hands of law abiding citizens does nothing but increase the power of criminals and raises the likelihood of the government becoming more despotic.
Paul McKenna
Ugly Redneck
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Joined: Jul 08, 2000
Posts: 1006
Jason,
Switzerland is not a good example. If you look at the reasons behind violent crimes my guess would be that drug related violent crimes make up a very large segment. Under Switzerland's drug law it is legal to obtain and use most drugs that have been outlawed in US / UK. Therefore the motive to commit crime has already been taken away. Couple that with projects that Swiss government voluntarily undertakes such as "Support for female drug users", "Heroin Clinics" etc. a large chunk of your crime has been eliminated. For reference:
Switzerland Drug Policy
Personally I would be against any form of gun control. I believe every citizen should possess a weapon and more importantly, should be trained on how to use it.


Commentary From the Sidelines of history
Paul McKenna
Ugly Redneck
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Joined: Jul 08, 2000
Posts: 1006
Originally posted by Michael Morris:
But IMHO taking the guns out of the hands of law abiding citizens does nothing but increase the power of criminals and raises the likelihood of the government becoming more despotic.[/QB]

My sentiments exactly! Gun control achieves something totally different than that which was intended. Gun control takes the power of protection away from the common people and gives the right to oppression to those selective few whom the law permits a weapon.
Joe Pluta
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Joined: Jun 23, 2003
Posts: 1376
JM: In any event, the statistics definitively show that violent crime rates are higher in the UK than in the US. While I personally don't care one way or another, it does seem to point out the flawed arguments for gun control, and the even more ridiculous arguments that paint the United States as this ultra-violent place where people are prisoner's in their own homes and automobiles.
Same here, Jason. I didn't get into this conversation to try and prove which country was more violent. I just took exception to the "prisoners in their own homes" lunacy. I think it's clear that the US and UK have at least comparable crime rates, and that the original statement was absurd.
Joe
John Dunn
slicker
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Joined: Jan 30, 2003
Posts: 1108
TB: You'll actually find that a large proportion of recent increases in robbery comes from people yanking mobile phones out of others hands in the street and then legging it. Most of the time it's just a snatch. I don't consider that to be a violent crime, but the statistics probably do.
When these losers get caught and sent to the clinker, they claim to have been violent criminals so they don't completely lose face among the other prisoners. I mean how much respect can you get for stealing someone's cellphone??? (btw, is it a better crime if there were more minutes leftover for that particular month?)
[ January 03, 2004: Message edited by: John Dunn ]

"No one appreciates the very special genius of your conversation as the dog does."
HS Thomas
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Joined: May 15, 2002
Posts: 3404
Cars and mobile phones are just about the only things that do get stolen regularly.
Laptops used to get nicked but perhaps they are now regarded as not worth the trouble.
Still, hardly worth getting steamed up enough to carry guns with malicious intention. A gun ban in one part of the country only is hardly going to be effective.
[ January 04, 2004: Message edited by: HS Thomas ]
Tony Collins
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Joined: Jul 03, 2003
Posts: 435
Would the rising level of handgun violence then correlate to an increase in drug activity in England?
Yes, exactly. The flood of cocaine onto the streets in fact. Started around the early nineties and has accelerated over the last five years. The police allow these local buissnessmen to wipe each other out because they are contributing to the local economy. Remember many cities in England base their economy around tourism/lesiure, clubbing is a massive industry.
Tony
[ January 04, 2004: Message edited by: Tony Collins ]
Jason Menard
Sheriff

Joined: Nov 09, 2000
Posts: 6450
The simple fact is that there is no causality between restricting gun ownership and reducing violent crime. If anything, restricting gun ownership, or in the case of England, willingly giving up your constitutionally protected right to bear arms, seems by all indications to have the opposite effect of what's intended.
Jason Menard
Sheriff

Joined: Nov 09, 2000
Posts: 6450
Originally posted by HS Thomas:
Cars and mobile phones are just about the only things that do get stolen regularly.
Laptops used to get nicked but perhaps they are now regarded as not worth the trouble.

So it's okay to be robbed, and not worth stressing over if it happens? If it's okay to have your phones, laptops, and cars stolen, then it must be okay to have everything else stolen. You also shouldn't worry when your life savings or paycheck gets violently removed from your possession either (and any form of robbery is inherently violent). Sure you may not be able to buy your kids the medicine they need, food for your family, or any other necessities, but it's nothing to get stressed over, is it?
Still, hardly worth getting steamed up enough to carry guns with malicious intention.

By this logic, any form of preparation for self-defense constitutes "malicious intention", and by extension, any act of self-defense is malicious. :roll:
[ January 04, 2004: Message edited by: Jason Menard ]
Tim Baker
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Posts: 541
In the UK you don't have to worry about feeding your children or buying medicine, because if you become poor we have a comprehensive welfare system. We also never had a constitutional right to bear arms, we don't even have a constitution. There is no way you can claim that the gun controls had anything to do with the rise in violent crime because before the controls virtually noone owned a gun anyway.
[ January 04, 2004: Message edited by: Tim Baker ]
HS Thomas
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Joined: May 15, 2002
Posts: 3404
Originally posted by Jason Menard:
By this logic, any form of preparation for self-defense constitutes "malicious intention", and by extension, any act of self-defense is malicious. :roll:

It's pretty safe to say that anyone here(other than the police, that is) seen sporting a gun will be percieved to have malicious intentions.
People here don't normally carry life savings around with them. Have been mugged once around the time of the last IRA bombing in London and the police took a very dim view of my actions even then. And rightly so! Had there been no gun ban under a law like yours I most probably would have got away with shooting him and that wouldn't sit well with me even at this later date. The mugger was also very contrite immediately afterwards though his intentions during the mugging were deadly. Thankfully it was a broken bottle and not a knife. Knives should be banned too. Anyone would look pretty stupid (or mad) carrying a kitchen knife around.
An interesting statistic in a link shows that it's the late teen to early 20's who end up dead. Unfortunately such foolishness abounds at that age. I think if one prepares for trouble often you will find it.
The reason I was mugged IMO was because I was carrying a wad of money concealed in it's holder on a pile of books. I was also attending self defence classes at the time and perhaps I was thinking of practicing some moves for real. And it was the kind (Shorinji Kempo) where you are trained to avoid trouble Never reached those heights due to a broken meta-tarsal. OK, the mindset evaded me. Shorinji Kempo had it's real origins in Buddha's time in India BTW - I think it's those knife -carrying high jumpers but Kempo is without the knives.
I didn't prosecute either because I felt pretty stupid.
[ January 04, 2004: Message edited by: HS Thomas ]
Jason Menard
Sheriff

Joined: Nov 09, 2000
Posts: 6450
Originally posted by Tim Baker:
In the UK you don't have to worry about feeding your children or buying medicine, because if you become poor we have a comprehensive welfare system.

We can debate the failures of socialism at another time if you'd like.
We also never had a constitutional right to bear arms, we don't even have a constitution.

You are correct of course. You allow parliament to decide which rights they feel like granting you.
There is no way you can claim that the gun controls had anything to do with the rise in violent crime

This is exactly what a large number of prominent criminologists and academics claim. I have already posted links.
Tim Baker
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Joined: Oct 04, 2003
Posts: 541
Originally posted by Jason Menard:

We can debate the failures of socialism at another time if you'd like.

Seems to work from where I sit.
Originally posted by Jason Menard:

You are correct of course. You allow parliament to decide which rights they feel like granting you.

What they judge to be in the best interest of the people they represent, who will reelect them or not every 5 years. I prefer this system to that which my rights are decided by people who lived hundreds of years ago and are obiously dead.
Bela Bardak
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Joined: Jan 02, 2004
Posts: 179
Originally posted by Tim Baker:

Switzerland is an extremely rich country and an extremely happy and friendly country. To claim their low crime rates are a result of their lax gun controls is unfounded. I would say it is the other way around. In a coutnry with such a low crime rate you can afford the freedoms of possesing firearms.

Rich and expensive. Happy I'm not so sure of. Not openly so based upon two short visits to Bern. The US is more openly happy based upon things like open and public cheerfulness. I'd also rate places like Austria, Italy, and rural France as happier based upon my admittedly subjective viewpoint. I believe that it's mandatory for Swiss male citizens between the age of 18 and 60 to belong to the Swiss armed forces and to own and maintain firearms. They are well-trained in the use of firearms. That possibly makes a major difference.
Originally posted by Tim Baker:

I would expect that a burglar would be more afraid of a homeowner with a firearm than they would the police because the homeowner is more likely to act rashly. They know the police have rules and training and as long as they don't threaten them they are unlikely to get shot.

Based upon my experience in the UK I'd add that criminals would also be more afraid of homeowners with firearms because the police are unlikely to arrive on the crime scene in time to have any effect. In rural areas the police are often unlikely to be of any use to the homeowner after the crime, either. So what's to fear from them?
HS Thomas
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Joined: May 15, 2002
Posts: 3404
Originally posted by Bela Bardak:

Based upon my experience in the UK I'd add that criminals would also be more afraid of homeowners with firearms because the police are unlikely to arrive on the crime scene in time to have any effect. In rural areas the police are often unlikely to be of any use to the homeowner after the crime, either. So what's to fear from them?

Translate that to tyrannical governments who have killed far more people than armed criminals.
Why the Nazis didn't invade Switzerland
The Swiss either have a different attitude than the US wrt gun laws OR the Swiss have no sub-culture. The article suggests that the use of guns in the US is basically peaceful but in US sub-cultures isn't.
Britain does have exploding sub-cultures which so far have been largely unarmed. Britain has fewer murder and rapes than the US but more than the Swiss. Almost non-existent in Switzerland..
[ January 04, 2004: Message edited by: HS Thomas ]
Joe Pluta
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Joined: Jun 23, 2003
Posts: 1376
Britain has fewer murder and rapes than the US
Murder, yes, but I'm not sure about rape. The per capita incidence of sexual offenses in the UK is nearly double the American per capita incidence of rape. Of course, it depends on the definition of sexual offenses, but that's still a whole lot of perversion.
Joe
Michael Ernest
High Plains Drifter
Sheriff

Joined: Oct 25, 2000
Posts: 7292

Originally posted by HS Thomas:

Why the Nazis didn't invade Switzerland
The Swiss either have a different attitude than the US wrt gun laws OR the Swiss have no sub-culture. The article suggests that the use of guns in the US is basically peaceful but in US sub-cultures isn't.

I would guess the Swiss have both. But it seems silly to me to expect many meaningful parallels between global superpowers to a small, landlocked, mountainous country with a more cohesive national identity. The numbers of most "subcultures" in the US alone probably exceeds the total population of Switzerland.


Make visible what, without you, might perhaps never have been seen.
- Robert Bresson
Frank Silbermann
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Joined: Jun 06, 2002
Posts: 1390
Tim Baker: Tony Martin himself has made some very disturbing comments about he will easily do it again and if you did it out of fear in the moment you would probably express at least some sympathy for the family of the person you killed.

I think he did express sympathy for both the boy and his family. But there is no reason he should regret the action he took. When a cop shoots in the line of duty, we expect him to regard the duty as unpleasant and lamentable, but he shouldn't regret having done his duty.
Likewise, when a private citizen commits justifiable homicide. And I do consider the shooting of burglars to be justified, _particularly_ in a society like Tony Martin's -- which provides no other effective protection from burglars.

Michael Ernest: A good, loud alarm system is more effective and less risky deterrent than a gun.

The purpose of an alarm is not deterrence; the purpose is warning. The word "Alarm" is a contraction of "All to Arms!" What good is being warned if there is nothing you can do about it?

Tim Baker: Then why don't we just let everyone carry around guns hidden under their coats in case someone tries to pick pocket you at the train station?

Actually, the majority of states in America now provide means for ordinary private citizens to get permits to carry around guns hidden under their coats. But our laws do not permit their use against pick pockets, since pickpockets generally do not threaten violence. Generally, we are only permitted to use our pistols to stop _forcible_ felonies (e.g. armed robbery, _breaking_ and entering, rape, etc.) However, if you notice the pickpocket and pull out a camera to photograph him for the police, and if the pickpocket in turn pulls a knife and demands that you give him the film -- then you may shoot him.

Axel Janssen: I strongly doubt there is any correlation between handguns allowed or not and crime rate. The fact its not allowed for me to take gun with me when buying newspaper in neighbourhood shop is based on traditions. I think if they would allow anybody here to wear gun, it would result in more murder first, because people are lacking experience in using it.

During the last ten years over half of the American states changed their laws to allow ordinary people to wear guns (e.g. when buying a newspaper in the neighborhood shop). This had not been allowed in most states since before most of us were born. The government avoided the problem you cite by requiring a background check (so as not to give permits to people with a history of streetfighting, public drunkenness, etc.) and a training course that clarified the laws pertaining to the use of guns in self-defense.
Applicants for carry permits are taught that if they draw the gun in public without good reason they will lose their permits (and hence, their ability to defend themselves in the future when they may really need the gun), and maybe even be prosecuted.

Tim Baker: The fact that the murder rate is rising in the UK is actually in direct correlation to the increase in the availability of illegal handguns, with cheap imports coming from eatern europe. Trying to link the increase in gun control to the robbery rate is a complete farce. Even when it was legal to own certain handguns virtually nobody did,

If what you say is true, then those Englishmen who attributed America's high murder rate to lax gun control may have been wrong. It vindicates those Americans who claimed gun control would not disarm criminals but would merely inconvenience them -- while seriously weakening the position of those people inclined to obey the law. It suggests that the elites who proposed stricter gun control laws as a solution to rising violent crime were fools who made things worse by delaying the search for more effective measures.
Tim Baker: It's actually very easy to judge what you need to do. Is the intruder directly threatening your life at that moment? If you have a gun this actually sets you at a disadvantage because it is harder for them to be threatening your life. So if they are 10 foot away with their back to you and not currently holding a gun then they aren't a threat if your holding a gun.

This contradicts your earlier assertion that allowing people to use guns to stop burglary would cause burglars to carry guns. Assuming that what you said is true, then one must take into account the likelyhood that the burlar is armed. If you're holding a gun on him, he is likely to draw and shoot you the moment your attention is diverted. That's why the more progressive states allow the householder to _presume_ that the burglar is endangering his life, and shoot without warning.
On the other hand, you might be able to challenge the burglar from behind cover (making it easy for you to shoot him, but difficult for him to shoot you). Then, if you were feeling altruistic and brave, you might risk giving him the option to surrender unharmed. (But the state ought not obligate you to take extra risks on the burglar's behalf.)

Tim Baker: If you're not holding a gun but say a knife then you can't wait for them to turn around to attack them.

True. With a contact weapon you dare not relinquish the advantage of surprise. Limited to such an inadequate weapon, I might hide and only use the knife to tear into him without warning if he forced himself upon me. But that means letting the burglar complete the burglary; government has not right to demand that of us.

If someone was in my home and I had any kind of weapon, there's no way I would kill them unless I saw something that made them an actual and identifiable threat.

By which time it might be too late to guarantee your victory.

However this is clearly not how the american mindset works as is clearly demonstrated by their policies of shoot first and ask questions later all around the world.

I cannot think of any such examples. In every one of our wars that I could think of in the last 100 years, we did plenty of talking before bringing out the guns.
[ January 04, 2004: Message edited by: Frank Silbermann ]
Tim Baker
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Posts: 541
oh look arabs with guns, they must be terrorists, lets shoot them. we don't need to check who they are first, or even once they retreat to their own police station
Michael Ernest
High Plains Drifter
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Joined: Oct 25, 2000
Posts: 7292

FS: The purpose of an alarm is not deterrence; the purpose is warning....What good is being warned if there is nothing you can do about it?
A loud warning is reason enough for most would-be robbers to split. One can assume a person who would continue a robbery/home invasion despite a "call to arms" is potentially quite dangerous.
[ January 04, 2004: Message edited by: Michael Ernest ]
Jason Menard
Sheriff

Joined: Nov 09, 2000
Posts: 6450
Originally posted by Tim Baker:
oh look arabs with guns, they must be terrorists, lets shoot them. we don't need to check who they are first, or even once they retreat to their own police station

Oh good, an expert. Can you tell us of your military training and time spent in combat zones and how you effectively have lead men under similar cirumstances? How did you deal with the fog of war and uncertainties when placed in such situations? What tactics did you favor? How did you coordinate your actions with local friendlies so that both their forces and yours could minimize the threat of friendly fire?
Tim Baker
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Joined: Oct 04, 2003
Posts: 541
Certainly. British troops are nowadays equiped with what we refer to as the big three, EYES, EARS and MOUTHS. We find these can be used to communicate effectively with other people! Eyes are good for identifying people, Ears are good for listening to people, and mouths can be used to give messages to other people. If you encounter unknowns in the course of your duty you first identify whether they are hostile or friendly. A clue is whether they are firing their guns at you or not. Once you have made your decision you need to constantly reevaluate it. For example if they are pleading with you to stop shooting, and if they are telling you they are iraqi police officers, you may want to reconsider, if they are not shooting back at you you have the time to do this.
Jason Menard
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Joined: Nov 09, 2000
Posts: 6450
While it's nice to sit at home all safe and comfy at one's computer and make inciteful comments about such situations while not really knowing what one's talking about, it is after all just armchair quaterbacking.
I suppose you are speaking of some particular incident, or are you just making this up? as you go along? You've given some specific details, is there a link to these somewhere, or are they fabricated?
In any case, generally speaking, since I have no knowledge of any specific incident you may be referring to, there are a million things that happen in combat. There are a million decisions to be made, and more often than not those decisions have to be made without having all the facts. While it's nice to sound morally outraged when not really knowing what one is talking about, the only basis such a discussion serves any purpose is if we know very specific details about the tactical situation and events leading up to the supposed engagement. Anything else is just a waste of time, and the dropping of vague facts in an attempt to paint an inaccurate picture certainly conveys a message, but probably not the one you'd like.
Now we are getting way off topic (I think we were talking about the violece in UK society and the lack of will to protect oneself that is encouraged), but since you want to place British troops on a pedestal... I've served with British troops, and they are good. They are a very capable military, and probably one of the more capable one's in the world. Now we are talking about Iraq though.
You may not be aware of it, but Iraq is home to to many different groups of Iraqis. Shia, Sunni, and Kurds are the main players, although there are others. Saddam Hussein was Sunni, and they were the minority which prospered most under his rule, usually at the expense of the others, particularly the Shia and the Kurds. Needless to say, unlike the Shia and Kurds, the Sunni on the whole were not all that pleased to see the status quo upset.
The comparatively small number of UK forces that are in Iraq are fortunate enough to be stationed mainly in Shia areas, in the southern part of Iraq. The Shia are generally cooperative with the coalition forces and supportive of our efforts there. The US forces however, are charged with the Sunni areas, most notably the basis of Saddam's support, which is being referred to these days as the Sunni triangle. It is almost exclusively in this area that forces are under daily attack. While the Brits can now afford themselves the luxury to travel around in relative safety without the need for flak vests and helmets, things are quite a bit more dangerous where the US forces must operate. I have little doubt that having the Brits operate predominantly in the southern part of the country was a political decision, as I doubt the British public has the stomach for more than a few casualties, and this was very likely a factor in keeping them out of the majority of combat operations.
[ January 04, 2004: Message edited by: Jason Menard ]
Richard Hawkes
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Joined: Jan 28, 2003
Posts: 1340
I haven't seen any really convincing, direct correlation between gun control, gun ownership and rates of violent crime. The USA, Canada and Switzerland have very high rates of gun ownership yet their violent crime figures are very different, even if you just use the "gun-death" statistics.
http://www.guncite.com/gun_control_gcgvinco.html (stats are from the '90s btw)
Switzerland has a high level of gun ownership but also high degree of gun control. With respect to the army-issued assault weapons, all amo is strictly is accounted for and the chances of anyone getting away with using one of those weapons for anything other than its intended purpose (defense of the nation) are remarkably small. Handgun ownership is also very high in Switzerland as is the hand-gun death rate. However, gun deaths generally are lower than the US.
http://www.huppi.com/kangaroo/L-switzerland.htm
Interesting (pro-gun control) essay on Kellermann study of guns in the home in the US:
http://www.huppi.com/kangaroo/L-kellermann.htm
I guess all that these stats really show is what works in one country doesn't necessarily work in another.
Jason Menard
Sheriff

Joined: Nov 09, 2000
Posts: 6450
Originally posted by Richard Hawkes:
Interesting (pro-gun control) essay on Kellermann study of guns in the home in the US:
http://www.huppi.com/kangaroo/L-kellermann.htm

Interesting article. I don't own a gun, but it looks like I have more to worry about because I'm a renter and I'm living alone. Those are both significantly more likely to get me dead than owning a gun, if I read that article correctly. I guess if I buy a house, move in with someone, and purchase a gun, I'll be better off than not owning a gun, living alone, and renting.
Mapraputa Is
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Joined: Aug 26, 2000
Posts: 10065
Interesting (pro-gun control) essay on Kellermann study of guns in the home in the US:
http://www.huppi.com/kangaroo/L-kellermann.htm

The guy who runs the site is interesting. And also a Monterey graduates...
Going from the Army to USCS was like going from conservative heaven to liberal heaven at warp speed.

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