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Old 10-02-2003, 05:52 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Gun laws dont reduce gun violence

Health - AP

Impact of Gun Control Laws Questioned
56 minutes ago Add Health - AP to My Yahoo!


By KRISTEN WYATT, Associated Press Writer

ATLANTA - A sweeping federal review of the nation's gun control laws — including mandatory waiting periods and bans on certain weapons — found no proof such measures reduce firearm violence.

http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmp...cdc_gun_laws_5
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Old 10-02-2003, 06:17 PM   #2 (permalink)
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FEL,

Please include the full text of the articles from now on.

Thanks.

---------------------------------

Impact of Gun Control Laws Questioned
1 hour, 32 minutes ago Add Health - AP to My Yahoo!


By KRISTEN WYATT, Associated Press Writer

ATLANTA - A sweeping federal review of the nation's gun control laws — including mandatory waiting periods and bans on certain weapons — found no proof such measures reduce firearm violence.

The review, released Thursday, was conducted by a task force of scientists appointed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (news - web sites).


The CDC said the report suggests more study is needed, not that gun laws don't work. But the agency said it has no plans to spend more money on firearms study.


Some conservatives have said that the CDC should limit itself to studying diseases, and some have complained in the past that the agency has used firearms-tracking data to subtly push gun control. In fact, since a 1996 fight in Congress, the CDC has been prohibited from using funds to press for gun control laws.


Since then, the task force reviewed 51 published studies about the effectiveness of eight types of gun-control laws. The laws included bans on specific firearms or ammunition, measures barring felons from buying guns, and mandatory waiting periods and firearm registration. None of the studies were done by the federal government.


In every case, a CDC task force found "insufficient evidence to determine effectiveness."


"I would not want to speculate on how different groups may interpret this report," said Dr. Sue Binder, Director of CDC's Center for Injury Prevention and Control. "It's simply a review of the literature."


Most of the studies were not funded by the CDC. Gun-control advocates quickly called on the government to fund better research.


A spokesman for the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence said the laws work, but it is nearly impossible to prove it because people can buy guns in one state and carry them into one of the handful of states with strong antigun measures.


"It's hard to study whether gun control laws work in this country because we have so few of them," said Peter Hamm. "Talking about studying gun control in this country is like talking about studying democracy in Iraq (news - web sites)."


The National Rifle Association said it needed more time to review the report before commenting on it.


Firearms injuries were the second leading cause of injury deaths, killing 28,663 people in 2000, the most recent year for which data was available. About 58 percent of the deaths were suicides. Gun accidents claimed about 775 lives that year.


About the only conclusion the task force could draw from the surveys was that mandatory waiting periods reduced gun suicides in people over 55. But even that reduction was not big enough to significantly affect gun suicides for the overall population.


The task force complained that many of the studies were inconsistent, too narrow, or poorly done.


"When we say we don't know the effect of a law, we don't mean it has no effect. We mean we don't know," said Dr. Jonathan Fielding, chairman of the CDC task force. "We are calling for additional high-quality studies."


Among the problems:


_ Studies on firearm bans and ammunition bans were inconsistent. Some showed the bans decreased violence; others found the bans actually increased violence. Many firearm bans grant exemptions to people who already owned the weapons, making it hard to tell how well a ban worked. Other evidence showed that firearms sales go up right before bans take effect.


_ Studies on background checks were also inconsistent, with some showing decreased firearm injuries and others showing increased injuries. A major problem with those studies, the report said, was that "denial of an application does not always stop applicants from acquiring firearms through other means."

_ Only four studies examined the effectiveness of firearm registration on violent outcomes, and all of the findings were again inconsistent.

_ Too few studies have been done on child-access gun laws to gauge their effectiveness.

_ Study periods often are too narrow to tell whether gun laws work. The task force noted that "rates of violence may affect the passage of firearms laws, and firearms laws may then affect rates of violence."

___
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Old 10-02-2003, 06:20 PM   #3 (permalink)
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As usual, Food Eater Lad isn't telling the truth, and is twisting the words of the article.

The article said that
Quote:
In every case, a CDC task force found "insufficient evidence to determine effectiveness."
That is a far cry from saying that "Gun laws don't reduce gun violence," as Food Eater Lad says in the subject. In fact, the report appears to call for 1) more standardized gun laws and 2) more research.
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Old 10-02-2003, 06:28 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by HarmlessRabbit
In fact, the report appears to call for 1) more standardized gun laws and 2) more research.
Actually, the report appears to say that the evidence/studies to date are inconclusive.

The Brady center and other anti-gun groups are the ones calling for more standardized gun laws.

And everyone twisting words to suit their agenda (conservatives and liberals both) is really getting old around here.
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Old 10-02-2003, 06:36 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Lebell
Actually, the report appears to say that the evidence/studies to date are inconclusive.
I took the summary at the bottom, where it says:

Quote:
tudies on firearm bans and ammunition bans were inconsistent. Some showed the bans decreased violence; others found the bans actually increased violence. Many firearm bans grant exemptions to people who already owned the weapons, making it hard to tell how well a ban worked. Other evidence showed that firearms sales go up right before bans take effect.
to imply that the study called for more standardization. But you're right, they researchers were just presenting data and refused to draw conclusions.

Quote:
And everyone twisting words to suit their agenda (conservatives and liberals both) is really getting old around here.
I'd love to have intelligent, reasoned discussion here, but that seems hard to come by. Frankly, I think more moderation needs to be done on post submissions. When someone posts a really inflammatory story in a really inflammatory way, it's not going to lead to a reasoned discussion. I sometimes do that too, but I'm taking the lead from others, including mods like Sixate, so I feel I need to balance the pendulum with a liberal voice.

Anyway, my .02.
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Old 10-02-2003, 06:48 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by HarmlessRabbit
but I'm taking the lead from others, including mods like Sixate, so I feel I need to balance the pendulum with a liberal voice.
Since when is sixate a mod here?
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Old 10-02-2003, 06:52 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by HarmlessRabbit
but I'm taking the lead from others
And there is EVERYONE'S problem.

One person does it and another feels compelled to and so on.

Hell, I've even fallen into the trap.

Everyone on TFP, especially the oldtimers, should be setting the example and not letting others lead them.

If they can't then you are right, HR, more and more moderation will have to be done and along with it, the cries of "censorship!!" and "power-hungry mods!! will be heard.

So I would prefer to avoid that, if at all possible.
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Last edited by Lebell; 10-02-2003 at 07:25 PM..
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Old 10-02-2003, 06:54 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by seretogis
Since when is sixate a mod here?
Sixate is a supermod on TFP.

Like a police seargent, he doesn't normally direct traffic, but if he needs to, he can.
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Old 10-02-2003, 07:06 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Lebell
Sixate is a supermod on TFP.

Like a police seargent, he doesn't normally direct traffic, but if he needs to, he can.
Well, he's active here and he has closed threads in the past, so I'd call him a mod on the politics forum.

Sixate's style of Link/Body Text/Inflammatory statement has become a signature style of many people posting here (myself included). Here's a classic example:

http://tfproject.org/tfp/showthread....ghlight=sixate

No offense to sixate, who seems to be a lovable guy with somewhat misguided political beliefs (grin). But, when a super moderator is lowering the intelligence level of the discussion, other people are going to follow suit. People learn by example, and I have never seen Sixate go "oh, good point, I never thought of that." He is here to impose his opinion on others. If that's a valid way for a mod to act, then others are going to learn from that. This forum is best when there is discussion and all sides are trying to understand the point-of-view of the people they disagree with.

Mojo Peipei, who has been guilty in the past of making some inflammatory posts and statements, just posted a well reasoned question about marijuana laws. What happened? Several of us weighed in with well reasoned answers.

So, I'll agree to try to raise the intelligence level here. I resolve to:

- Try to post insightful topics, not LINK/STORY/FLAME posts
- Try to reply intelligently to posts that are intelligent

But, I think the old timers and the mods need to set a good example. You can disagree with someone without resorting to insulting them or their beliefs.
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Old 10-02-2003, 07:37 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Not that I'm not one hundred percent guilty myself...but it seems the end result is what is being observed right now.

No one is even lingering around the forum, except a couple of regs, one occassional eye browse raiser/troll (moi!), and the ever present, all encompassing, super succinct mod...Lebell.

You guys are even learning about why no one is learning anything around here

With out a drop of sarcasm in my tone...I really like this place.

-bear

Kinda nice when it's quite around here huh?
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Old 10-02-2003, 07:44 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Speaking of the CDC and gun law statistics....why in the world is the CDC involved in gun law research?

quote from article:

"....Some conservatives have said that the CDC should limit itself to studying diseases"

imagine that. The centers for disease control.

And why is every study ever completed by the federal government recommend additional funding and more study?

-bear
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Old 10-02-2003, 09:58 PM   #12 (permalink)
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At no time in history has a new gun law reversed a trend in violent crime rates. England and Australia both saw their crime rates rise when they effectively banned private firearm ownership.

I apologize that I don't have time to dig up the numbers for you, but they aren't hard to find and they're not just on NRA propaganda sites.

There is no evidence that gun control reduces crime.
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Old 10-03-2003, 08:01 AM   #13 (permalink)
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I gotta side with Bear and Willy on this one. CDC? Guns? "Yeah, I came down with a bad case of that dreaded gun disease. Thank God those fine, well studied, doctors were able to catch it in time with their early detection tests before it spread to my glands. Why if that had happened I would not have had a chance. Someone surely would have died, and it could have been me. The last thing we needed was an epidemic."
Publicly owned guns are a good thing. Crime is a bad thing. A prevents B.

I've never read, heard, or seen a news piece that wasn't biased. It's the nature of the Beast. We sift thru who said what where, when and how about whatever and try to find our truth in the report. Not surprisingly we don't ever all find the same truth. I was amused at the link/story/flame formula for posting. Having not ever read Sixate post I would hope it was link/story/point. Flame being, "You there, member so-n-so, your are obviously a boob for even thinking such tripe!" While I am somewhat new to the political forum I haven't read that type of post here and trust I won't. Not that it would offend me in any way, even if I was that boob, but because I hope that here points can be made and we can learn at least what other folk are thinking and how they formed their conclusions, without a heavy handed Moderator skewing the dialog.
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Old 10-03-2003, 10:02 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by HarmlessRabbit
So, I'll agree to try to raise the intelligence level here. I resolve to:

- Try to post insightful topics, not LINK/STORY/FLAME posts
- Try to reply intelligently to posts that are intelligent

But, I think the old timers and the mods need to set a good example. You can disagree with someone without resorting to insulting them or their beliefs.
Hear, hear!
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Old 10-03-2003, 11:36 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Yes when Austria did its famous gun ban, gun murder went down 20%, but murders in general went up 20%. England is seeing a 49% gun homocide rise in one year, with a 35% rise the next. And Canada this year murders went up, while gun homocide went down . Three nations with murders going up, three nations with new stricter gun laws.
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Old 10-03-2003, 06:18 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Food Eater Lad
Yes when Austria did its famous gun ban, gun murder went down 20%, but murders in general went up 20%. England is seeing a 49% gun homocide rise in one year, with a 35% rise the next. And Canada this year murders went up, while gun homocide went down . Three nations with murders going up, three nations with new stricter gun laws.
URL? Authoritative source?
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Old 10-03-2003, 06:39 PM   #17 (permalink)
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http://news.com.au/common/story_page...5E1702,00.html

Murder rate up 20 per cent


THE number of murders in Australia jumped by 20 per cent last year, with babies aged under one year the most common victims.

New figures released today by the Australian Institute of Criminology also showed a dramatic 25 per cent drop in the number of people killed by guns in the 2001-02 financial year.

The National Homicide Monitoring Program (NHMP) annual report found the number of homicides in Australia had increased by 64 people, or 20 per cent, from 317 deaths in 2000-01 to 381 last year.

Multiple killings jumped to 21 last financial year compared with seven the previous year.

Six of the 21 multiple victim incidents involved the deaths of three people, while 15 incidents involved two victims.
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Old 10-03-2003, 08:42 PM   #18 (permalink)
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1 - you said austria in your original post, not australia

2 - ok, so gun murders went down 25 percent. in fact, they were at the lowest level since 1989. Family murders of children went up, and nutty people murdering their whole family went up. I guess you're blaming people murdering their whole family on the lack of guns?

Once again, you fail to tell the whole story. Once again, you selectively quote facts to distort your story.

Your complete lack of journalistic ethics continues to completely disgust me. I await justification of the other "facts" you quoted.
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Old 10-03-2003, 09:01 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Its practically common knowldge that gun laws increase violence not reduce. What incentive is there for people who already have weapons illegally to carry weapons to obey gun laws??? Thats right, gun laws only disarm and weaken law obiding citizens anybody who says otherwise is living on a cave on the moon with their eyes closed and their ears plugged.
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Old 10-03-2003, 09:15 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by HarmlessRabbit
1 - you said austria in your original post, not australia

2 - ok, so gun murders went down 25 percent. in fact, they were at the lowest level since 1989. Family murders of children went up, and nutty people murdering their whole family went up. I guess you're blaming people murdering their whole family on the lack of guns?

Once again, you fail to tell the whole story. Once again, you selectively quote facts to distort your story.

Your complete lack of journalistic ethics continues to completely disgust me. I await justification of the other "facts" you quoted.
The facts are, since you ignore them, every time guns are banned, murders go up. Now, how did i misrepresnt that?
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Old 10-03-2003, 09:23 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Food Eater Lad
The facts are, since you ignore them, every time guns are banned, murders go up. Now, how did i misrepresnt that?
1 - the story you posted said nothing about gun law changes in Australia. Please cite those facts.

2 - you have failed to post any evidence of the other "facts" you posted.

3 - even if everything you stated so far is true, which I doubt, you still haven't proven that "every time guns are banned, murders go up."


How can I ignore facts when you continue to fail to provide them?
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Old 10-03-2003, 09:24 PM   #22 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Mojo_PeiPei
Its practically common knowldge that gun laws increase violence not reduce. What incentive is there for people who already have weapons illegally to carry weapons to obey gun laws??? Thats right, gun laws only disarm and weaken law obiding citizens anybody who says otherwise is living on a cave on the moon with their eyes closed and their ears plugged.
URL? Facts? Credible source?
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Old 10-03-2003, 09:43 PM   #23 (permalink)
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Thats where the "common knowledge" thing would come into play, I don't sit on my ass all day looking up sources I know to be true.
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Old 10-03-2003, 09:45 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Mojo_PeiPei
Thats where the "common knowledge" thing would come into play, I don't sit on my ass all day looking up sources I know to be true.
Thanks for contributing to the discussion.
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Old 10-03-2003, 09:46 PM   #25 (permalink)
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You have facts, rabbit, i assume to disprove the fact that banning guns leads to higher crime?
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Old 10-03-2003, 09:49 PM   #26 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Mojo_PeiPei
Thats where the "common knowledge" thing would come into play, I don't sit on my ass all day looking up sources I know to be true.
You just lost this argument. Thanks for playing.
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Old 10-03-2003, 09:56 PM   #27 (permalink)
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The more guns you have around the place the more likely that people will get shot with them. This is especially true considering the amount of morons around the place. Isn't this obvious. The harded it is for everyday citizens to get thier hands on these weapons, the safer we all are. You dont have to be a criminologist to work this out.
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Old 10-03-2003, 10:09 PM   #28 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Food Eater Lad
You have facts, rabbit, i assume to disprove the fact that banning guns leads to higher crime?
You started this thread.

You have failed to prove your points.

You have misquoted stories (here and elsewhere on the forum).

You have twisted facts (here and elsewhere on the forum).

You have failed to provide backing to your wild assertions.

Trying to turn this around on me is a juvenile tactic at best.

Let's summarize the thread:

- Your original post claimed "Gun laws dont reduce gun violence" and cited a study which showed that no studies have yet proven that gun laws are or are not effective.

- You claimed that banning guns increased the murder rate in Australia. You have failed to provide any citation as to when or if the gun laws were changed, you only posted one story showing that gun crimes went down as multi-murders of familes and small children went up.

- You claimed that "England is seeing a 49% gun homocide rise in one year, with a 35% rise the next." No citations to back that up.

- You claimed that "Canada this year murders went up, while gun homocide went down." No citations to back that up.

- You claimed that "The facts are, since you ignore them, every time guns are banned, murders go up." With, amusingly enough, no facts to back that up.

And now you close all that out by asking me to prove my point? I'd laugh if this wasn't so sad.
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Old 10-03-2003, 10:10 PM   #29 (permalink)
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And I assume you have facts to prove this? Or do anti gun people need not prove anything?


EDIT this is inreferenct to almostaugust's post.

Last edited by Food Eater Lad; 10-03-2003 at 10:21 PM..
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Old 10-03-2003, 10:20 PM   #30 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by HarmlessRabbit
You started this thread.

You have failed to prove your points.I thought showing how when places ban guns and crime, especially murders go up, proved my point.

You have misquoted stories (here and elsewhere on the forum).
Nope, not close. Keep saying it though, I ams sure someone will belive you.

You have twisted facts (here and elsewhere on the forum).
Nope, not close. Keep saying it though, I ams sure someone will belive you.

You have failed to provide backing to your wild assertions.
Nope, not close. Keep saying it though, I ams sure someone will belive you.

Trying to turn this around on me is a juvenile tactic at best.
Asking you to back up your claims is juvenile? How juvenile.

Let's summarize the thread:

- Your original post claimed "Gun laws dont reduce gun violence" and cited a study which showed that no studies have yet proven that gun laws are or are not effective.

That was the point of the article, how there is no proof that anti gun laws reduce crime. Sorry if that doenst jive with you
- You claimed that banning guns increased the murder rate in Australia. You have failed to provide any citation as to when or if the gun laws were changed, you only posted one story showing that gun crimes went down as multi-murders of familes and small children went up.
The fact still remains that murders went up after Austraila had a gun ban. Again, sorry if the facts dont jive with your world view.

- You claimed that "England is seeing a 49% gun homocide rise in one year, with a 35% rise the next." No citations to back that
up.

I posted this in the Micheal Moore thread. There is a link there to the bbc new article that says gun homicide in England up 49% and the next year up 35 % read them for your self if you wish.
- You claimed that "Canada this year murders went up, while gun homocide went down." No citations to back that up.
This year Canada's gun homicide is at a 42 year low. Good for Canada! Hooray. But murders are up. Bad for canada, Shucks. Sorry if this doesnt jive with your world view. And Canda just enacted a stricter gun control law.

- You claimed that "The facts are, since you ignore them, every time guns are banned, murders go up." With, amusingly enough, no facts to back that up.
There is facts all over the place, you choose to ignore them.

And now you close all that out by asking me to prove my point? I'd laugh if this wasn't so sad.
How about you stop laughing and prove your point?


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Old 10-03-2003, 10:24 PM   #31 (permalink)
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http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/3112818.stm


Last Updated: Tuesday, 16 September, 2003, 12:54 GMT 13:54 UK

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Q and A: Fighting gun crime


The death of seven-year-old Toni-Ann Byfield in north London has led to fresh questions about gun crime in inner cities. BBC News Online explains the major issues about gun crime - and how its part of a wider problem with inner city drugs.
How much gun crime is there in the UK?

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

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.

But gun crime is a complex subject. 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 of crime are young men.

So who is carrying the guns?

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


The growth of gun crime in London has come with the rise in crack cocaine.

The worst of the crack dealing takes place in the poorest areas, which are also most likely to be those with the highest concentration of minority communities.

At present, the worst affected are some of London's African-Caribbean communities (hence the phrase of 'black-on-black crime'), centred predominantly among those of Jamaican descent.

That said, there is great concern about rising gun use within other communities in London and elsewhere.

How have the police reacted?

The first unit tasked with targeting gun crime perpetrated against black communities was the Metropolitan Police's Operation Trident.

The unit was founded in 1998 after a spate of shootings in Brent and Lambeth.

There are now similar operations targeting gun crime in Bristol, Birmingham, Manchester, Nottingham and Leeds, but they are not directly comparable to Trident.

How effective have these operations been?

The Metropolitan Police says the latest figures show Trident is starting to pay dividends.


In 2002, Trident investigated 24 murders. This year there have been 12 deaths - and in eight cases detectives have charged suspects.

Since the beginning of this year, Trident has seized 94 firearms, 1,906 rounds of ammunition and just over 5kg of Class A drugs.

Detectives are still investigating a further seizure of 150 guns in June.

Detective Chief Inspector John Coles of Operation Trident recently said these successes were down to the growing willingness of communities to speak out.

"People are coming forward and talking to us in a way we never thought possible," he said.

What about elsewhere?

In the West Midlands, Operation Ventara dealt with 2,161 firearms offences in the year to April 2003 - a 5% drop on the previous 12 months.

SPECIALIST GUN CRIME OPERATIONS
Trident: London
Ventara: Birmingham
Goodwood: Manchester
Stealth: Nottingham
Safeguard: Leeds
Atrium: Bristol

However, during the same period, the number of firearms offences dealt with by West Yorkshire police rose from 1,756 to just over 2,000 incidents.

In Nottingham, Operation Stealth has made 350 arrests since September 2002. Avon and Somerset has seen more than 1,000 arrests since the introduction of Operation Atrium two-and-a-half years ago.

So isn't this all being run by 'yardie' gangsters from Jamaica?

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 have become more established, gangs have become more inclined to carry guns to command the respect of rivals, he said.

What about gun amnesties?

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.

So how else can this be tackled?

Community campaigners at the sharp end say that much more needs to be done to prevent young men from poor areas being sucked into a gang culture which claims to provide respect and standing. This work, they say, has to start at a much younger age.

Secondly, London Mayor Ken Livingstone wants the government to ban the sale of replica firearms.

In many cases, these "imitation" weapons are just a step away from being converted into live firearms - something detectives know is happening in London.

Another frequent call by community activists is that more of the assets seized from drug dealers should be returned to communities to help regenerated the worst-off areas.

The government recently pledged to put £1.5m of seized assets back into areas worst affected by gun crime.

But Lee Jasper said: "It's ludicrous that some £10m recovered by the Metropolitan Police from drug dealers in London last year should find its way to the Treasury and not be reinvested in the communities suffering the problem."
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Old 10-03-2003, 10:25 PM   #32 (permalink)
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http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/2656875.stm

By Joyce L Malcolm
Author and academic


As gun crime leaps by 35% in a year, plans are afoot for a further crack down on firearms. Yet what we need is more guns, not fewer, says a US academic.

"If guns are outlawed," an American bumper sticker warns, "only outlaws will have guns." With gun crime in Britain soaring in the face of the strictest gun control laws of any democracy, the UK seems about to prove that warning prophetic.
For 80 years the safety of the British people has been staked on the premise that fewer private guns means less crime, indeed that any weapons in the hands of men and women, however law-abiding, pose a danger.

JOYCE L MALCOLM
Professor of history, Bentley College, US

Author of Guns & Violence: the English Experience

Senior Advisor, MIT Security Studies Program


Click here to have you say on this story

Government assured Britons they needed no weapons, society would protect them. If that were so in 1920 when the first firearms restrictions were passed, or in 1953 when Britons were forbidden to carry any article for their protection, it no longer is.

The failure of this general disarmament to stem, or even slow, armed and violent crime could not be more blatant. According to a recent UN study, England and Wales have the highest crime rate and worst record for "very serious" offences of the 18 industrial countries surveyed.

But would allowing law-abiding people to "have arms for their defence", as the 1689 English Bill of Rights promised, increase violence? Would Britain be following America's bad example?


The 'wild west' image is out of date
Old stereotypes die hard and the vision of Britain as a peaceable kingdom, America as "the wild west culture on the other side of the Atlantic" is out of date. It is true that in contrast to Britain's tight gun restrictions, half of American households have firearms, and 33 states now permit law-abiding citizens to carry concealed weapons.

But despite, or because, of this, violent crime in America has been plummeting for 10 consecutive years, even as British violence has been rising. By 1995 English rates of violent crime were already far higher than America's for every major violent crime except murder and rape.

You are now six times more likely to be mugged in London than New York. Why? Because as common law appreciated, not only does an armed individual have the ability to protect himself or herself but criminals are less likely to attack them. They help keep the peace. A study found American burglars fear armed home-owners more than the police. As a result burglaries are much rarer and only 13% occur when people are at home, in contrast to 53% in England.


Concealed weapon can be carried in 33 states
Much is made of the higher American rate for murder. That is true and has been for some time. But as the Office of Health Economics in London found, not weapons availability, but "particular cultural factors" are to blame.

A study comparing New York and London over 200 years found the New York homicide rate consistently five times the London rate, although for most of that period residents of both cities had unrestricted access to firearms.

When guns were available in England they were seldom used in crime. A government study for 1890-1892 found an average of one handgun homicide a year in a population of 30 million. But murder rates for both countries are now changing. In 1981 the American rate was 8.7 times the English rate, in 1995 it was 5.7 times the English rate, and by last year it was 3.5 times. With American rates described as "in startling free-fall" and British rates as of October 2002 the highest for 100 years the two are on a path to converge.


Gun crime rates between UK and US are narrowing
The price of British government insistence upon a monopoly of force comes at a high social cost.

First, it is unrealistic. No police force, however large, can protect everyone. Further, hundreds of thousands of police hours are spent monitoring firearms restrictions, rather than patrolling the streets. And changes in the law of self-defence have left ordinary people at the mercy of thugs.

According to Glanville Williams in his Textbook of Criminal Law, self-defence is "now stated in such mitigated terms as to cast doubt on whether it still forms part of the law".

Nearly a century before that American bumper sticker was slapped on the first bumper, the great English jurist, AV Dicey cautioned: "Discourage self-help, and loyal subjects become the slaves of ruffians." He knew public safety is not enhanced by depriving people of their right to personal safety.

Joyce Lee Malcolm, professor of history, is author of Guns and Violence: The English Experience, published in June 2002.



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Would more guns help cut crime in the UK?

With around 30,000 gun deaths a year, I think we should look elsewhere than the US for ideas on this subject. More legally-owned guns means more chances for accidental deaths in the home from guns, more teenagers finding their parents' guns and playing with them, more chances for legal guns to be stolen by criminals to be used by criminals.
R K Bulmer, UK

I'd rather, if my granny were to be mugged, that she had the choice to pull out her purse, or her .45 Magnum. She's a little too old to learn kung-fu, or to run away. She may well hand her purse over anyway, but at least she has the choice. Criminals carry guns anyway, so it's about time the rest of the population had the same choice.
Sid, UK

I can't see the average British citizen wanting to take pot shots at potential muggers, however a right to self defence, not something chewed to incoherence by the lawyers, would do more to restore people's respect for the law than a personal armoury - that and more police to investigate existing crimes.
Andy, UK

I'm an expat living in Texas, where we all as citizens have a right to carry guns. I do not personally carry a weapon, but criminals do not know that. That is a deterrent. I am armed to the teeth at home in my "castle". Criminals have a question they ask themselves when they think about approaching a house out in the country: Is that family armed or not? More than likely they are.
And Barnett, Texas, US

I find this notion ludicrous. We do not need a nation of armed vigilantes (potential or otherwise) to ensure the peace, but rather active citizens who are willing to stand together against crime in their neighborhoods and cooperate with local authorities to apprehend criminals. This is the way to reduce crime. To draw a link between gun ownership and an overall drop in crime in the US is spurious and the article does not have enough evidence to point to a causative relationship between the two.
Sean Aaron

It is clear that the knee jerk reaction after Dunblane has achieved precisely nothing except reduce our chances of any sporting shooting success. The politicians have consistently read this matter wrongly. Perhaps it is time to give the academics a chance?
Alan Preddy, UK

Allowing homeowners to arm themselves will simply encourage potential burglars to arm themselves, and I don't particularly want to get into a gunfight for a colour television.
Mike, UK

This is like saying that raising the speed limit in built-up areas will cut pedestrian deaths since cars will spend less time passing through.
J, UK

Rarely do we get to hear such a flimsy argument based on misused and easily quoted statistics as Prof. Malcolm's. More avaliability of firearms in the UK would bring us more Dunblanes and perhaps a Columbine.
J.Canning, UK

Can you imagine the number of mistakes, accidents, acts of temporary insanity, etc. that would result from having guns freely available? I wonder what the police think of this crazy idea - what policeman would dare to investigate a "domestic quarrel" call, not knowing what firepower he might face?
Gordon, Canada,

More guns in the UK would mean less crime. If crimnals fear the use of firearms by citizens then they will be less likly to committe an offense. People should have the right to own firearms as well as carry them in the UK.
Ian, UK
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Old 10-03-2003, 10:26 PM   #33 (permalink)
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http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/politics/2640817.stm

Sunday, 12 January, 2003, 11:02 GMT
Gun crime soars by 35%


Every day there were 27 firearms offences

Gun crime has risen by 35% in a year, new Home Office figures show.
There were 9,974 incidents involving firearms in the 12 months to April 2002 - a rise from 7,362 over the previous year.

RECORDED CRIME RISES
Overall crime: 9.3%

Gun crime: 35%

Robbery: 14.5%

Domestic burglary: 7.9%

Drug offences: 12.3%

Sexual offences: 18.2%

Source: Home Office

That represents an average of 27 offences involving firearms every day in England and Wales, with guns fired in nearly a quarter of cases.

Overall crime in the year to September was up 9.3%, with domestic burglary up 7.9%, drugs offences up 12.3% and sex offences up 18.2%.

Home Office officials insisted, however, that the new system of including all crimes, whether there was supporting evidence or not, was responsible for some of the increases.

When that new recording system was taken into account, overall crime rose by 2%, they said, with burglary up 5%.


Real gun or replica?
Click here to try our picture quiz
Home Office Minister John Denham also pointed to new data from the British Crime Survey - which includes crimes not reported to the police - which he called the most reliable indication of trends.



The survey put all crime down 7% in the year to September.

"The British Crime Survey shows crime has been falling since 1997 and the risk of being a victim is very low - around the same as 1981," he said.

The statistics come after the government this week announced a crackdown on gun crime with a series of plans to tighten firearms law.

And they are released ahead of high level talks with police, customs and community leaders on Friday about how to tackle gun crime, hosted by Home Secretary David Blunkett.


: Graphic guide


Gun crime, crunching the numbers




The latest gun crime figures are more than double the 4,903 firearms incidents recorded in 1997 when Labour first took power.


The community remembers the victims of the shooting
The biggest increases are in the large metropolitan areas.

Robbery was up 13% on the adjusted figures.

But it did fall by 10% between July and September when the government's new efforts against street crime kicked in, said officials.

Earlier this week the government unveiled plans to introduce a five-year minimum jail sentence for anyone illegally possessing a firearm.


Vigil for shooting victims
Click here for full story
That was followed on Wednesday by plans to ban anyone carrying a replica or air weapon in a public place without a good reason, as well as new age limits.

Opposition parties have accused ministers of mounting a snap response to the New Year shooting in Birmingham in which two teenage girls died.


There are worries about replica guns being reactivated
Conservative shadow home secretary Oliver Letwin dubbed the new recorded crime figures "truly terrible".

Mr Letwin said: "The only word for this is failure.

"The government's response of knee-jerk reactions and initiatives is not working and confused signals on sentences for burglary will not help either."

Mr Denham denied the government had rushed into new plans against gun crime.

TALKING POINT
How can guns be made less accessible?

The Government should go for a complete ban on the import of all replica guns



Nick, UK


Join the debate



He said said rising gun violence was only a small part of overall crime but was "desperately worrying", especially for the worst-affected areas.

Liberal Democrat spokesman Simon Hughes said the gun figures meant tougher targeting of gun-toting gangs was needed.

Mr Hughes added: "The overall crime picture is not a cause for complacency, but it is mercifully not a reason for shock headlines."

Speaking on Radio Five Live, Tory leader Iain Duncan Smith said some inner city areas were almost "lawless" following the growth of a gangs and guns culture.

Vigil

And he said the rise in gun crime was linked to "the huge increase in the drugs culture that's taking place in the cities that's literally ripping apart the inner cities, breaking this fabric down".

Hundreds of people gathered on Wednesday for a candlelit vigil in Aston in memory of cousins Charlene Ellis, 18, and Letisha Shakespeare, 17, who were gunned down in a hail of bullets nearly a week ago.

Also on Thursday, a coroner opened and adjourned an inquest into the death of Charlene.

Mr Duncan Smith joined calls for people with information about the shootings.

"We do need co-operation with the police because we have got to catch these killers," he said. "They have committed an appalling crime."
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Old 10-03-2003, 10:27 PM   #34 (permalink)
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http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/2632163.stm

Fighting the growing culture of guns


Gun culture "mostly in hands of the young"



By Peter Gould
BBC News Online correspondent


The use of firearms by young criminals is disturbing evidence of a growing gun culture.
In the year 2000-01, there were 7,362 recorded crimes in which firearms other than air weapons were used.

That compares with 4,903 firearms incidents in 1997-98, the year Labour came to power.

And when the latest figures are published on Thursday, they are expected to show the number of offences has risen to more than 8,000.

The growing culture of the casual carrying of handguns, both real and imitation, must be brought under control



Sir John Stevens
Met Police Commissioner


The Home Secretary, David Blunkett, says the use of firearms has been rising despite the fact that Britain has some of the toughest gun laws in the world.

"There has been an unacceptable increase in the flagrant use of guns in crimes across the country," he says.

"We will not tolerate an escalation in the number of guns on our streets."

Gun smuggling

The Home Office says it is clear that the problem of the possession of handguns lies predominantly with young people.



Some of the illegal guns seized by police
They carry weapons for protection, particularly when dealing in drugs, and for revenge in gang warfare.
An increasing number of young people see firearms as a means of gaining respect. In some communities, the gun has almost become a fashion accessory.

After the shootings at a primary school in Dunblane shocked the nation in 1996, the ownership of handguns was banned, despite the protests of gun clubs.

The problem now is the number of illegal guns in the hands of criminals. Faced with the growing use of firearms, a number of police forces in England and Wales have set up special units.

In London, Operation Trident was designed to counter what was seen as a particular problem of "black-on-black" shootings.

The Metropolitan Police says that to date more than 200 people have been arrested and charged with murder, firearms and drug offences.

Replica guns

In the West Midlands, Operation Ventara is also focused on gun crime within the black community. The force has been offering cash rewards of up to £1,000 for information that leads to arrests.

Gun Culture
7,362 gun crimes in 2000-01

0.1 per cent of all recorded crime involves guns

757 people convicted of firearms offences in 2001

131 received an immediate custodial sentence

18 months was the average prison sentence


Breaking down barriers in communities where there has been a suspicion of the police is a key element in the strategy to reduce gun crime.

Later this week, Mr Blunkett will be discussing the options with senior police and customs officers, and lawyers from the Crown Prosecution Service.

Significantly, community representatives from across the country are also being invited.

To get guns off the streets it will be necessary to reduce the number of illegal weapons coming into Britain. Some of the weapons are thought to have been smuggled in from the Balkans.

The Home Office is also looking closely at the possibility of tightening up the law on replica guns, possibly making it an offence to carry one in public.

And there is real concern over the ease with which some air pistols, designed to resemble real guns, can be converted to fire bullets.

The National Criminal Intelligence Service is co-ordinating efforts to stop imports of any imitation guns that can be readily turned into working firearms.

Prison terms

The Home Office says that while the number of gun-related incidents is still relatively small, representing 0.1 per cent of all recorded crime, the impact of armed crime on communities is devastating.


Guns will not be tolerated: Sir John Stevens
The death of the two teenage girls in Birmingham is a tragic illustration of the dangers to innocent people.

The plan for a minimum sentence of five years for the illegal possession of firearms was drawn up before the latest shootings.

Mr Blunkett says it will send a clear message that serious, violent offending will invariably be dealt with "in the strongest manner".

Last year, 757 people were for convicted for possessing or distributing banned weapons, of whom 131 were given an immediate prison sentence.

The average custodial sentence was about 18 months, so it is hoped the tougher policy will be a more effective deterrent.

The Metropolitan Police Commissioner, Sir John Stevens, supports the move for mandatory prison sentences for firearms offences.

"It is essential that we make it clear to criminals that the use of guns will not be tolerated on our streets," he says.

"The support of the judicial system is needed in delivering meaningful sentences if a real impact on gun crime is to be made.

"The growing culture of the casual carrying of handguns, both real and imitation, must be brought under control as soon as possible."
See also:


06 Jan 03 | Politics
Gun law shake-up unveiled

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Man charged after boy stabbed


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Old 10-03-2003, 10:29 PM   #35 (permalink)
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http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/scotland/1057562.stm

Wednesday, 6 December, 2000, 14:18 GMT
Scottish homicide rate soars



Knives were used in a growing number of killings

The number of killings in Scotland has soared by almost a quarter, according to new figures.
The statistics showed an upsurge in homicides caused by knives or other sharp instruments - and an equal increase in the number of men dying.

The death toll has been condemned as "unacceptable" by Justice Minister Jim Wallace.

The statistics released by the Government Statistical Service showed that there were 120 homicide victims in Scotland last year.



This annual pattern of young men with knives killing young men cannot be allowed to continue

Jim Wallace, Justice Minister
That figure was an increase of 22 on the previous year - taking it to the highest level since 1995.

The rise was accounted for by the number of men killed, which also rose by 22 to 99. The female figure remained constant at 19.

The deaths of more than half the victims were attributed to rages or quarrels, many resulting from alcohol or drug abuse.

It also emerged that more than half the deaths were due to knives or sharp instruments, with the figure rising from 44 to 66.

More than three-quarters of the victims knew their killer or killers.

Violent death

A quarter were killed by their partner or a relative, many as an escalation of ongoing domestic abuse.

Mr Wallace said he was "extremely concerned" about the figures, which cover murder and culpable homicide cases.

"That 120 people should suffer a violent death at the hands of another person is totally unacceptable in the modern civilised Scotland we are trying to create," he said.

"This is why it is so important that we are taking action to change a culture of alcohol, drugs, domestic abuse and street crime, backing this with more police than ever before."



Jim Wallace said the figures were unaccaptable

He was particularly concerned at the rise in the number of male victims, many of whom were under 30.

"There is a clear picture of young men carrying knives who are prepared to use them regardless of the consequences, not only to their victims and their families but also to themselves and to their own families," he said.

"Alcohol is often involved. This annual pattern of young men with knives killing young men cannot be allowed to continue.

"Today's figures once again demonstrate a tragic and senseless waste of life. We will do all we can to protect our communities."

Trouble 'hot spots'

Deputy Health Minister Malcolm Chisholm is due to announce details of a comprehensive strategy to tackle alcohol misuse on Thursday.

Scottish police forces are targeting licensed premises particularly known as "hot spots" for trouble throughout December.

Scottish Conservative justice spokesman Phil Gallie said the executive had to start acting.

"They are on the totally wrong tack when they start to close prisons and when they reduce the police numbers. They have got to reverse that situation," he said.

The Scottish National Party said the executive had to tackle the culture of young men carrying knives.
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Old 10-03-2003, 10:31 PM   #36 (permalink)
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Location: Perpetual wind and sorrow
Thanks FEL... certainly is interesting Harmless eh? Again Moon, Ears, Eyes, and Cave, you be the judge!
__________________
To win a war you must serve no master but your ambition.
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Old 10-03-2003, 10:32 PM   #37 (permalink)
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http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/england/2753063.stm

Wednesday, 12 February, 2003, 14:16 GMT
Weapon crime soars 116%


Offences using weapons are increasly common

Violent crime and weapons offences in Teesside have jumped sharply, according to new performance figures for Cleveland Police.
The number of assaults more than doubled in the Cleveland force area in the latter part of last year, while weapons offences rose by 116% and violent crime by 77.7%.

But Cleveland Police Authority said the increase was down to the way incidents are now recorded.

The authority also said overall crime was down between April and December 2002.

Yardie gangs

The authority highlighted crime prevention operations, which it said had led to a rise in arrests for threatening and disorderly behaviour.

Overall, the authority said total crime was down by 0.3%, and claimed substantial inroads had been made tackling burglaries, robberies and car crime.

Increases in drugs crime and indecency have been attributed to high profile operations to target drug dealers and prostitution, the authority said.

In January it was revealed Cleveland Police were bracing themselves for an increase in gun crime after fears of a possible increase in Yardie gangs.




See also:


24 Jan 03 | England
Teesside 'worst for reoffending'

20 Jan 03 | England
Force braced for Yardie threat

19 Nov 02 | England
Drug addictions fuel crime rise

07 Oct 02 | England
New cameras to cut crime

Internet links:


Cleveland Police

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

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Teenagers admit festival violence

Postmaster sacked over robbery

Beckham forgives Ferguson

Man faces nine rape charges

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400 jobs to go at zinc works

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Links to more England stories are at the foot of the page.
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Old 10-03-2003, 10:34 PM   #38 (permalink)
Banned
 
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/1741336.stm


country in the crosshairs


While Britain has some of the toughest firearms laws in the world, the recent spate of gun murders in London has highlighted a disturbing growth in armed crime.
The shooting of a young woman in London by a mobile phone thief has again raised the issue of escalating gun crime in the UK.

The attack follows a series of gun-related incidents in east London between Christmas and New Year, which included the case of two men who were killed by a single shot at a party.

Weapons seized by the Met in 2000 included:
Lanchester sub-machinegun capable of firing 550 rounds a minute
Israeli Uzi sub-automatic machinegun capable of firing 750 rounds a minute
Between April and November 2001, the number of murders in the Metropolitan Police area committed with a firearm soared by almost 90% over the same period a year earlier.

Armed street robberies rose, in the same period, from 435 to 667 in 2001 - an increase of 53% - while overall in the capital there were 45,255 street robberies and snatches last year, against 32,497 in 2000.

Much of the blame has been pinned on the trade in stolen mobile phones and up to half of all muggings are now thought to be for mobiles.

With both street robberies and gun crime on a sharp increase, there are fears that the two trends will overlap and young muggers will, more and more, graduate from knives to firearms.



Some of the 600 or so illegal weapons seized by the Met every year

The worrying trend is not just in London. Birmingham, Manchester and Nottingham have also witnessed increasing gun crime.

Police believe young men are mostly responsible for the attacks, which are often fuelled by rows in the lucrative crack cocaine market.

There are even suggestions the recent spurt is down to inner city police officers being siphoned off to protect terrorist targets in the wake of the 11 September attacks in America. Muggings in London have risen by more than 40% since early September.

In the capital, so-called "black on black" attacks have accounted for much of the increase in gun murders. Of the 30 firearm killings between April and November 2001, 16 were classed as "black on black".

Special operation

In response to this trend, the Met set up the intelligence-based initiative Operation Trident in March 1998, specifically to tackle "black on black" gun crime.



Will all police officers one day be armed?

The operation was deemed necessary because of the reluctance of witnesses to come forward through fear of reprisals from the criminals involved.

Yet only a few years ago the British government led a rigid crackdown on gun ownership.

Following the Dunblane massacre in 1996, in which 16 schoolchildren were killed by a lone gunman, the government hoped to nip in the bud Britain's burgeoning firearms culture with an outright ban on handguns.

Although all privately-owned handguns in Britain are now officially illegal, the tightened rules seem to have had little impact in the criminal underworld.

Millions of guns?

No-one knows how many illegal firearms there are in Britain, although estimates range from between 200,000 to several million. Whatever the true figure, it is said to be growing daily.



Young people with mobiles are becoming targets for street crime

With so many deadly weapons on the streets of the UK's big cities, the next question seems to be whether Britain's famously unarmed police officers should carry guns as a matter of course.

In recent years, the police have gradually become accustomed to firepower. Almost every force already has armed response vehicles, equipped and ready to attend the scene of a robbery or siege.

But there appears to be unease at the prospect of rank and file officers carrying guns on the beat. Many fear that such a move would be counterproductive, inviting more criminals to arm themselves with higher grade weaponry.

Almost 80% of PCs said they were not in favour of being routinely armed, according to a ballot carried out by the Police Federation in the mid 1990s.

And in the event of a decision to arm all officers, only 43% said they would be prepared to carry guns on duty all the time.

Yet the recent spate of attacks will only increase the feeling in some quarters that one day Britain's bobbies may have to cross this Rubicon.
See also:


03 Jan 02 | England
Victim appeals for phone thief's capture
16 Jul 01 | UK
Handgun crime 'up' despite ban
16 Aug 01 | UK
Commissioner turns gun crusher
02 Jan 02 | UK
The war against muggers
Internet links:


BBC News Online's Life of Crime: Gun Law
Metropolitan Police

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

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Links to more UK stories are at the foot of the page.
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Old 10-03-2003, 10:36 PM   #39 (permalink)
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Location: Perpetual wind and sorrow
http://www.sightm1911.com/docs/guncrimesoars.htm

Gun Crime Soars in Run Up to New Laws
The Sydney Morning Herald, Wednesday, October 28, 1998

Crime involving the use of guns is on the rise despite tougher laws - but gun control lobbyists maintain Australia is becoming a safer place.

The number of robberies with guns jumped 39 per cent in 1997 to 2,183, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, while assaults involving guns rose 28 per cent to 806 and murders by 19 per cent to 75.

Almost half of firearm killings in the seven years to 1997 involved weapons which are now prohibited or restricted following the slaughter of 35 people at Port Arthur in 1996, according to Australian Institute of Criminology research.

But gun groups say the new controls have created a thriving black market.

"Before registration, there was no illegal market for long arms and semi-automatics," the president of the Firearm Owners' Association of Australia, Mr Ron Owen, said. "Now the black market of pistols has increased tenfold, and both criminals and non-criminals seek them. And the black market of machine-guns has at least tripled." However, the national spokesman for the Coalition for Gun Control, Mr Roland Brown, described the $500 million gun buy-back scheme which has taken 640,000 weapons out of circulation as an "unqualified success". "Australia is a safer place," he said.

But the 1997 statistics were "next to useless" because the new national laws were not in force completely until July this year.

"Figures for 2000 or 2001 will be more useful," he said.

"It can take five or 10 years for these laws to become fully effective and for the results to show. A good performance indicator is that there has been a change in the composition of arsenals of guns.

"No longer are most people able to own semi-automatics or pump action shotguns.

"Rapid-fire weapons are just about finished in Australia - and this has reduced the prospect of mass killings significantly."

The gun control lobby also says crime statistics can be misleading. Latest research shows that a third of all firearm murders involve intimate partners and a fifth is followed by the suicide of the offender.

- AAP

http://www.thetruthseeker.co.uk/article.asp?ID=438

or


Gun Crime 'Soars' in Britain
This past week Britain’s mainstream media has been full of reports on the rise of gun crimes. But the coverage only appeared after the murder of two teenage girls catapulted the crisis into public awareness. Prior to that the country’s mainstream media had all but ignored the problem. This, despite the fact that armed crime has been rising steadily in the country since 1997.

In fact gun crime has grown ever since legislation was passed in the wake of the Dunblane killings prohibiting gun ownership. In 1998 there were 9 fatal shootings in London, the following year that figure had more than doubled to 20. Thereafter each year has seen a steady rise in the number of shootings, but only now, 5 years later, has the mainstream media decided to tell us. And only after they were forced to acknowledge the problem after high profile shootings.

And once again we are not being told the whole story. For the rise in gun crime in Britain, following the passage of stringent anti-gun legislation exactly parallels the situation in Australia. In 1999, following the Port Arthur shootings, the Australian government implemented a sweeping gun ban and confiscation program. In the wake of that it might be expected that gun crimes would have all but disappeared, but exactly the opposite happened. The following year it was reported that armed robberies had climbed by 44 per cent, whilst in the State of Victoria alone murders with firearms climbed by 300 per cent!

Clearly sweeping gun bans do not stop gun crimes. They only disarm law-abiding citizens, whilst the criminal element retain their firearms, and with fewer law abiding gun owners to deter them they are all the more likely to use them.

However don’t expect to hear that from the mainstream media: because stringent anti-gun legislation has foreshadowed the emergence of totalitarian regimes throughout the last century. And it doesn’t matter whether criminals possess guns or not, because they will be the last to fight against a totalitarian takeover.

Stringent gun control has indeed become the hallmark of those who wish to further their power over a free society. After all an unarmed population is far less able to resist the imposition of totalitarian rule than an armed one. The figures speak for themselves:

In 1911, Turkey established gun control. From 1915 to 1917, some 1.5 million Armenians, unable to defend themselves were rounded up and slaughtered.

In 1929, the Soviet Union established gun control. Thereafter some 20 million dissidents, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and thrown into Stalin’s gulags.

In 1938 Germany established gun control and from 1939 to 1945 some 13 million were thrown into Hitler’s concentration camps.

Obviously sweeping gun bans do nothing but offer an open doorway to dictatorship. Which may account for the mainstream media’s reluctance to report growing gun crime until it was forced to cover the issue by events that few could ignore. The government and the media have yet to acknowledge that stringent gun legislation has done nothing to curb crime. Instead they've waffled on about tackling the 'causes of crime' and banning imitation firearms and even pellet guns. Anything but admit that stringent gun curbs have done nothing but encouraged more gun crimes.

“This year will go down in history. For the first time, a civilized nation has full gun registration. Our streets will be safer, our police more efficient, and the world will follow our lead into the future.” Adolph Hitler 1933
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Old 10-03-2003, 10:36 PM   #40 (permalink)
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Dec. 20, 2001

The deadly scourge of guns on city streets hit painfully close to home this week for the Toronto police force.

Constable Antonio Macias, 32, was shot Monday night outside an apartment building on Weston Rd. in the west end. The wound was serious but thankfully, Macias, the father of two young children, is expected to recover.

The shooting was a troubling reminder of the dangers our police officers face day in and day out.

Even more troubling is the description of the person suspected of shooting the officer — a teenager.

Mayor Mel Lastman spoke for many when he called the shooting "an affront to everything that's decent about this city."

Truth is, though, youths with guns have been a deadly combination this year in Toronto.

On Saturday night, 20-year-old Mohamoud Ahmed was standing on a downtown street corner when a car pulled up, several young men jumped out and shot him. Five days earlier, David Bryan, 29, was gunned down in Scarborough.

The two men are just the latest in a grim tally of death and injuries that have shattered neighbourhoods and destroyed young lives.

In all, there have been 59 murders in Toronto this year, 32 of them involving guns. Police have made arrests in fewer than 30 of the homicides.

Toronto's black community, which has been especially hit hard by the shootings, issued a call to action earlier this year to solve not just the murders but the social and economic problems at the root of this violence.

To its credit, the police force was working on a strategy to get guns off the streets. But the attacks of Sept. 11 forced a new focus on the force and the strategy went on the back burner.

Chief Julian Fantino, who rushed back to Toronto Tuesday from an anti-terrorism conference in the United States, admits that the emphasis on terrorism after Sept. 11 sidetracked the force from other priorities.

Now guns are the priority. Getting the force's gun strategy off the drawing boards and into action has taken on a new urgency. Fantino has promised to unveil several new initiatives very shortly.

And the city, which ignored the concerns of the black community, cannot turn a blind eye any longer.

For all the talk of recent weeks, it isn't terrorists who are the greatest threat to this city. It is young people and their guns. It will take the combined efforts of politicians, educators, community activists and residents themselves to halt this epidemic of shootings.

Copyright 1996-2001. Toronto Star Newspapers Limited.
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