Gun Crime Still Going Up in England

Though just maybe it’s starting to peak.

According to this BBC News piece:

The number of crimes involving firearms increased by just under 3% in the 12 months to March 2003, to 10,250.

It was well below the 35% rise in the previous year, when gun crime leapt from 7,362 firearms offences to 9,974.

Home Office minister Hazel Blears said: “The risk of a fatal shooting in England and Wales is still one of the lowest in the world.”

But minister, it always has been – even long before the bans on semi-automatic rifles and all handguns. The point is, these laws show no evidence of making England and Wales safer, yet they were accomplished at great public expense.

Also in the story, relating to the move to non-dangerous bar glasses and switching to plastic beer bottles:

Violent crime – excluding robberies and sex attacks – increased by 12% between April and June this year, according to the British Crime Survey quarterly results, also released on Thursday.

Shadow home secretary Oliver Letwin said the statistics presented a “confusing” and “alarming” picture.

“One thing which no amount of statistical manipulation can disguise is that violent crime has doubled in the last six years and continues to rise alarmingly,” he said.

Cheery, that – no?

This piece, also from the BBC, reports:

Gun crime has increased in recent years, including a near doubling of handgun offences since 1996, the year of the Dunblane massacre.

Um, make that “since all handguns were banned and all the licensed, registered, legally possessed ones were handed in.”

Now, to put this into some perspective:

In 2001-02, there were some 22,300 firearms offences, a rise of almost a third on the previous year. The number of people killed by firearms was 23.

That’s a busy weekend in Chicago. Yet we’re told constantly by gun control groups that licensing and registration will reduce gun crime and would never be used to confiscate our guns. However, England & Wales had licensing and registration, “safe storage” and all the rest, and when that wasn’t enough they confiscated all the semi-auto rifles and then all the handguns.

All the registered ones.

And firearm crime went UP.

Yet if you listen to the Violence Policy Center, the only answer to our gun violence problem is a complete handgun ban.

That worked so well in England, didn’t it?

And here’s why:

But while it may appear to be rife, it is generally confined to a large number of incidents perpetrated by a small number people in very small areas.

While this is of no comfort to those who may have witnessed gun crime on their own streets, those most likely to be victims are young men.

All the evidence suggests that gun crime is not the problem but a symptom of a huge and well established drugs economy.

And the same is true here. Gun violence is concentrated here too, “to a large number of incidents perpetrated by a small number people in very small areas.”

But the VPC et. al want us to take England’s gun control path – to the same predictable failure. If you want some idea of the significance of England’s gun control failure, when the ban went into effect the number one source of gun violence was Jamaican immigrant gangs called “Yardies.” Yet this report states:

So-called Yardie gangs were certainly involved in the growth of crack in the UK.

But Lee Jasper, chair of the Trident advisory group, says the majority of those involved are now British-born.

As their drug trade has become more established, gangs have become more inclined to carry guns to command the respect of rivals, he said.

Now, according to the police, guns are in the hands of regular Brits.

To give you some idea of the futility of banning handguns – even in a nation with strict licensing and registration laws, the report also discusses a recent “amnesty” that allowed people to turn in weapons and ammunition – no question asked:

The Home Office ran a month-long nationwide gun amnesty in April, partly as a response to the outcry following the killings of Birmingham teenagers Letisha Shakespeare and Charlene Ellis in January.

More than 43,000 weapons were handed in to the police over that month – but critics say they were not the weapons on the streets. In London’s case, there was an extremely poor response from each of the key Trident areas.

Get that? This story has more detail on that “amnesty.” Forty-three thousand unregistered weapons and almost a million rounds of ammunition – but almost none from the “very small areas” that have the “large numbers of incidents.” According to the story, when the handgun ban went into effect in 1996 they only collected 23,000 firearms and 700,000 rounds of ammo – from the legal, registered owners. Oh, and Letisha and Charlene were gunned down with a submachinegun – illegal to possess in England since 1934, but available in England, new-in-box, via Eastern Europe.

But we’re supposed to believe that licensing and registration will work here to reduce crime.

Just like we’re supposed to believe that “shall-issue” concealed-carry legislation will result in “blood in the street” and “road rage” killings over fender-benders.

Why is it that gun control advocates never bother to look at reality?

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