I received an email from Graham Showell, a law abiding British citizen who is hoping to bring American-style concealed carry rights to his country. Mr. Showell requested that I post a link to his petition in the hope of gaining added publicity. The petition can be seen here, and more information about it is included below:
My name is Graham Showell, I’m 32 and from the West Midlands, England.
Due to the high crime rates in this country, I feel something needs to be done to reduce crime and protect the many vulnerable people of our nation.
The fact is that neither the UK government nor the police have the resources to offer full time protection to every citizen.
It seems obvious now that the police are no longer able to protect us, so I feel that the UK public should now be trusted to protect themselves and their loved ones, along with being allowed access to the most effective tools for self defence.
I’m asking the government to grant to law-abiding citizens the right to self-defence, and defence of our property, by repealing the UK handgun ban and allowing us to carry concealed handguns, something that the British public were able to do between 1870 and 1920.
Since 1920, Successive governments have increased restrictions on legal gun ownership, in the hope that it would reduce violent crime.
The problem with this is that criminals don’t obey laws, so when guns were banned criminals ignored the law and kept their weapons, and decent law abiding people were left defenceless, as is the case now.
People have said that in spite of some of the toughest gun laws in the world, violent crime (including gun crime) in the UK is rapidly escalating.
The fact remains that in reality, violent crime is escalating BECAUSE of the gun laws, not in spite of them.
Statistics show that violent crime is lowest in those parts of the world where legal private gun ownership is highest.
This is simply because guns, in the right hands, are a serious deterrent against acts of violence.
An example of this is the US state of Vermont, which has virtually no laws against gun ownership, and a crime rate which is a fraction of that in Britain.
The simple fact is that by disarming honest citizens, Britain has actually helped criminals, who now go about their business without fear.
Take a look at the following statistics –
England Murder Rate
1987 – 1.19 per 100,000 people.
2002 – 2.03 per 100,000 people.
( 70.5 percent increase )
United States Murder Rate
1991 – 9.80 per 100,000 people
2006 – 5.70 per 100,000 people
( 41.8 percent decrease )
England Violent Crime Rate
1988 – 410 per 100,000 people
2007 – 3600 per 100,000 people
( 778 percent increase )
United States Violent Crime Rate
1991 – 758.2 per 100,000 people
2006 – 473.5 per 100,000 people
( 37.5 percent decrease )
Newspapers report that guns are used in around 12,000 murders in the US each year, but they don’t report that they are also used over 2 1/2 million times each year in self defence, often without a single shot being fired.
The above statistics show that since law-abiding citizens were allowed to carry concealed handguns in the US, the crime rate has dropped significantly.
The effects are the same in every state that has passed concealed carry laws.
In comparison, England’s violent crime rate is more than 7 times that of the United States, and is getting worse each year, whilst the US violent crime rate continues to stay low.
If the current trend continues, England will have one the highest crime rates in the world in less than 15 years.
I propose “shall issue” concealed carry permits, (renewable every 5 years) similar to those currently issued in over 40 US States.
Permits would be issued to all applicants, subject to the following conditions:
Minimum age of 21 years old.
No convictions for serious violent or sexual crimes.
No history of serious mental illness, such as paranoid schizophrenia.
Completion of firearms safety course.
I propose that the 5 year minimum sentence currently in place for carrying a handgun should apply to all those who carry without permits.
Much of this information is backed up in the following book:
“More Guns Less Crime” by John R Lott Jr :
Take a look at the following website showing ordinary people preventing all types of crimes using firearms :
US Crime rates from following website –
An interesting video clip –
Vermont Crime Statistics from –
England Crime Rates from the following websites :
Finally, A very special thank you to John R Lott Jr, Clayton E. Cramer and Elbert Bicknell of Pro Gun New Hampshire for their kind support and for listening to an ordinary Brit like me !!!!!