Sunday, 13 February 2011

One For The Hoplophobes To Scream About…

It seems Essex Police have found a solution to some of their budget woes – and it concerns the shotgun license checks they carry out:
The five-year checks could now be done by postraising fears about who could be holding a firearm.

It means firearms officers would no longer be able to assess the mental stability of the person on the doorstep or check how safely a gun is stored to reduce the likelihood of them being stolen in a raid.
Which is more than a little disingenuous, because those checks (like your car’s MOT) only proves that on the day in question everything was hunky-dory.

There’s nothing to stop you going tonto and shooting up the high street, or leaving the gun safe door open, three days or three weeks or three hours after after the visit…
Former Labour Essex MP Angela Smith, now Baroness Smith of Basildon, said: “I think we’ve found with some of the people that have caused some problems with firearms and shotguns, it has been because there haven’t been appropriate checks taken.

“You can’t just say to someone once they’ve got a firearms certificate that it’s forever, there have to be some checks along the way.”
Really? Why, when the checks serve no useful purpose?

And who’s going to check that, when I sit at the wheel of my ton of metal for a trip to the shops, I won’t suddenly have the urge to swing the wheel hard over and take out a bus queue of kiddiewinks just as easily as I could do with a shotgun (actually easier, since I’ve been driving cars for real for years, but only shoot on the Playstation!)?

Nothing, of course. So, why all the fuss over guns? Is it just their portability?

Or is this a way of pointing the finger at those dratted Tory cuts?
She is concerned Essex Police has no option to impose these changes because of Government cost-cutting.
That’ll be a ‘Yes’ then…
An Essex Police spokesman said: “We are looking at ways to save money, but also improve efficiency.

“Home visits will continue for all new licence applications, but it’s proposed that a postal renewal service is used after five years which is when all licences have to be reconsidered.”
Seems eminently sensible to me. Probably should have done it before, in fact.

But I’m not a hoplophobe…

10 comments:

Smoking Hot said...

They'd rather waste their time raiding houses with 100 police to get toy pen guns!

Angry Exile said...

And who’s going to check that, when I sit at the wheel of my ton of metal for a trip to the shops, I won’t suddenly have the urge to swing the wheel hard over and take out a bus queue of kiddiewinks just as easily as I could do with a shotgun...

And this has happened. On 4th May 1999 Steven Abrams drove into a school playground and rammed some kids, killing two and injuring four more and a teaching assistant. He had no connection to the playschool at all unless you count having a failed relationship with a woman from the neighbourhood the school was in, and who herself had no connection with the school beyond that. He drove past the school, did a U turn and just drove straight at the playground in the front. He told police he wanted to "execute these children because they were innocent" - his words.

I found barely any reference to Abrams or the murders outside the LA Times. But you can find mention of Buford Furrow, also from LA, who attacked a Jewish day care centre four months later, injuring three children and a receptionist, and killing a postman later the same day. He made news across the US and has a Wikipedia entry despite a smaller body count and injury list to his name. But unlike Abrams he used a gun instead of a car. The media are more concerned with how fucknuts kill than who and how many. Vehicular homicide? Meh, c'mon guys, let's go find a gun story.

[I] only shoot on the Playstation

I say this to everyone but you really should try clay shooting. Even when its bad its good, and when it's good its really good. If you've ever dumped a load of old crockery or bathroom tiles at the tip and been tempted to frisbee them in there so they smash to bits then you'll probably get satisfaction from watching a clay break into thousands of fragments. Even more if you were the one who shot it :-) Call the CPSA and ask where to go for an introductory lesson. Honestly, it's the most fun you can have wearing earplugs.

AntiCitizenOne said...

http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,65889,00.html

ivan said...

Why is it needful to have a bit of paper saying you can own one of a very small number of types of guns? Is it because the politicians are afraid that the people might just consider them surplus to requirements?

wv: ousepeep - I'm sure there is meaning in there.

JuliaM said...

"They'd rather waste their time raiding houses with 100 police to get toy pen guns!"

Oh, they'll always find the manpower for that sort of thing, I hope...

"The media are more concerned with how fucknuts kill than who and how many. Vehicular homicide? Meh, c'mon guys, let's go find a gun story."

Yup. Wouldn't do to have anyone start to think the problem might be the person, rather than the tool, would it?

And someone did go nuts with a knife in New York at the weekend and killed four, New York being rather gun-phobic. Wonder how much damage he'd have done, and how far he'd have got, in Texas?

As AC1's link shows, the doctrine of peace and non-aggression isn't doing us any good.

JuliaM said...

"I say this to everyone but you really should try clay shooting."

Heh! I'd be lucky to hit the sky.

The only stages/missions I haven't got medals or a passing score for in the 'Cabela's' hunting games? Wing or varmint shooting.

All the others, no problem - stalking, tracking, having the patience to wait for the perfect shot? No problem, and I've a ton of gold medals. But fast moving targets are very much NOT my forte.

I can't even blame the restriction of the PS3 gamepad control either - I'm not much better with ones that allow use of the PS3 Move gun attachment.

And don't get me started on the climbing and balancing bits! Or the fishing... :)

Angry Exile said...

In that case I recommend you try clay elephant shooting to begin with :-) Seriously, they normally chuck some easy ones up for beginners so that (nearly) everyone can go home having hit a few. I took my sister once and she smoked a few, and I swear she screwed her eyes shut right before she pulled the trigger.

Chalcedon said...

The thing is that according to the Bill of Rights we have the right to hold and bear arms. the state might want to know who exercises this right but they have no right to stop you. Therefore licensing and so on shouldn't actually happen as such. It should be unnecessary. also the banning of pistols is illegal under this act of parliament.

Angry Exile said...

Chalcedon, unfortunately the BoR was poorly written. The exact words are:

That the Subjects which are Protestants may have Arms for their Defence suitable to their Conditions and as allowed by Law.

The important part is that you may only have weapons for defence that are allowed by law, and gradually the number of those weapons the law allows has been reduced to zero. It's like saying any colour you like as long as it's black. You may have absolutely any weapon the law approves of for your defence, and this is the approved list:



And I wrote it down twice just to make sure I didn't miss any ;-)

The Yanks avoided this and turned it from a positive right that can and has been stitched up into a negative one which, despite the hoplophobes' best efforts, still stands. Even then they got too wordy if you ask me. That clause justifying it has been argued over for years. If they'd just said "The right to bear arms shall not be infringed" and left it at that it would have been - excuse the pun - bulletproof.

Angry Exile said...

I should add that the BoR does not say that the number of weapons allowed by law must be a number greater than zero. That is how and why we got fucked on it. Boiled down it was always a positive right and Parliament's to grant or withdraw as it sees fit. In fact it saw fit to withdraw it in 1937, when the Firearms Act of that year changed things so that self defence - the BoR refers specifically to defence - was no longer a valid reason for a licence.