Between 1995 — just before Britain’s ban — to 2005, Britain’s assault rates climbed 36.5%, sexual assaults increased 63%, and robbery increased 25.5%.
By 2007, Australian women were raped over three times as often as American women, and British women twice as often. (All UK and Australian rates above are taken from earlier studies by this author.)
Last year, a taxi driver murdered 12 people in northern England, using a shotgun. Apparently, he was upset over “an ongoing tax inquiry.”
Also in 2010, a man who had served 26 years for a 1971 murder was convicted again for killing somebody using a shotgun.
Meanwhile, the Guardian reported that all types of firearms are “cheap” and “easy to get” on the streets of London. There is a thriving gun-smuggling operation from eastern European countries. Locals are converting replicas into functioning firearms to sell on the black market.
In sum? Australian and British gun control appear to have had no impact upon those wanting guns, or desiring to commit violence.
Meanwhile, as National Public Radio (NPR) and the Telegraph reported, Giffords supports gun rights. In 2006 and 2008, the NRA gave Giffords a D+. She improved to a C in 2008, but remains below the congressional average of a C+. For its part, the NRA considers “C” to be “Not necessarily a passing grade.”
Although political disagreement appears not to be a primary motive in the attack on Giffords, plenty of commentary now revolves around questions like “how could a gun rights advocate support the Second Amendment now?” This in turn provides a rationale to promote gun control by media and anti-rights politicians, silencing dissenters through guilt by association: if you don’t support gun control, you support murdering public officials.
NPR also implies that “vitriol” is to blame, since “some are questioning whether divisive political rhetoric may have played a role.” The Washington Post quoted Arizona’s Pima County Sheriff Clarence W. Dupnik, who “denounced the nation’s vitriolic political climate.”
The anger, the hatred, the bigotry that goes on in this country is getting to be outrageous, and unfortunately Arizona has become sort of the capital. We have become the mecca for prejudice and bigotry.
Brady’s Helmke played the “vitriol” card, too, remarking: “We also are deeply concerned about the heated political rhetoric that escalates debates and controversies, and sometimes makes it seem as if violence is an acceptable response to honest disagreements.”
And Rep. James P. Moran Jr. (D-Va.) attempted to equate small-government advocacy and gun ownership with terrorism:
Moran said Giffords explained that, unlike in his Northern Virginia district, “a substantial percentage” of her district was “anti-government and pro-gun” — a potentially dangerous mix.
Curiously, Moran is graded F by the NRA and a Brady Campaign endorsee.
This rhetoric shows how the First and Second Amendments are closely interrelated. To have officials blaming speech as the cause of violence indicates that they don’t believe Americans have the maturity and responsibility to handle free speech, nor the discernment to differentiate between political disagreement and violence. This same thought process is used to justify gun control: we are not trustworthy enough to own guns, because sometimes, bad things happen.
The gist of this so-called logic is that our government doesn’t trust us and therefore needs to control us. This brings us to the original intent behind the Founders’ including the Second Amendment in our Bill of Rights: England didn’t trust the colonists and sought to control them through taxation, oppression, and disarmament, leading to the Revolutionary War.
Perhaps we’re coming full circle. Do those desiring control know this — and wish to halter us before American history repeats itself?