View Single Post
Old 10-11-2013, 06:05 AM
Thud Thud is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Cornwall, UK
Posts: 225
Default Re: Anyone ever pull a gun at practice?

I would just draw your attention to the fact that in the UK we have had a gun ban for over half a century. Firearms were invented in this country several hundred years ago but for most people the expense made it impossible to own one. We had people robbing stagecoaches long before Hollywood thought of that idea but although they carried guns the response of the stagecoach companies was to catch the robbers not turn the stagecoaches into a fortress.

In the early part of the 20th C no licence was required for weapons. We did have a few firearm related incidents and the perps were hanged for it but on the whole the population didn't carry guns as a matter of course. Landowners usually had shotguns and rifles for vermin disposal purposes. It has never actually been legal in this country to own a weapon for self-defence!

We had a huge civil disturbance in the 1920's called a General Strike. At that time it looked to the authorities as if there was going to be general anarchy as well and so they compiled a register of all those holding weapons of any description who could be conscripted into some kind of civil defence force. This was done by the cops and of course having compiled the register they then went a step further and introduced a licencing scheme. This country has as many control freaks as anywhere else!

But the gun licencing scheme was not very strict, you could apply at a Post Office for a gun licence and that was all that was required. Gradually the licence requirements have been tightened up over the years until right now when it is difficult to get a licence at all. The primary requirement is that you have to have a good reason for having one. Self defence is NOT a good reason in this country. It has to be either for vermin disposal or sporting use.
Weapons of war are forbidden. Nobody in the UK legally owns an AR16 but they might well have a collection of rifles. Pistols are now forbidden. The security requirements are serious.
A friend with a gun collection has had to build an armoured room in his house, a burglar alarm, security lights, he's registered with the police and has to renew the license every 4 years.
Every weapon he has is recorded on the licence and if he buys or sells anything that also requires a change to the licence. It costs a fee every single time.

Even just owning a shogun now requires a detailed application to the cops, a declaration of sanity from the doctor and a character reference from a reputable person. There are other rules about the amount of ammo you can have and the security of the home. You MUST have a metal security cabinet and the guns must be kept in it. Break any of those rules and your license is revoked.

We DO get the occasional nut running around with a weapon and our cops frequently carry MP5's and pistols. They have shot quite a few guys over the years. Unfortunately they have shot a number of innocent people too. But we don't have massacres like Columbine etc. We did have a guy running around shooting small children at a school in Dunblane. As a result of that pistols are banned in the this country. If you see a guy with a pistol, it's illegal.

Having said that I have been told that it is not hard to get your hands on illegal weapons in this country, if you really try. If you ask the right people and come up with money then it is definitely possible. But if you get caught then you definitely get a stretch.