British Gun Control has Failed: Gun-Related Crime Doubled in the Decade After the Gun Ban

Recent evidence makes it even clearer that gun control has failed miserably in the country where it had perhaps the greatest chance of possibly succeeding:

A few relevant quotes from that news article in the Telegraph, discussing how gun related crime has risen sharply since the British enacted their gun ban.

Offences involving firearms have increased in all but four police areas in England and Wales since 1998, figures obtained by the Tories reveal. One part of the country has seen the problem increase almost seven fold as the availability of guns, and criminals’ williness to use them rises.

The number of people injured or killed by a gun has also doubled. . .

It emerged last week that armed police are to carry out regular street patrols for the first time to help combat gun crime in London.

There were 9,865 firearm offences in 2007/08, a rise of 89 per cent on the 5,209 recorded in 1998/99.

This is not the first time that I’ve written about the failure of British gun control laws to disarm criminals.  To name a few cases, I’ve written about a pregnant British woman being raped by an armed home invader, an a British postal worker who was fatally shot by an armed robber.  I’ve mentioned how a British bicycle rider was gunned down, and how teenagers are often shot in London these days.  I’ve discussed how a former boxing champion and father of 2 young children was fatally shot in a smoke-free nightclub after politely asking a violent individual to stop smoking indoors.  Moving beyond those anecdotal evidence,  crime statistics which show a 40% increase in handgun related crime in the first two years after the British banned handguns, which shows that criminals who want guns will get them on the black market, or will simply manufacture their own illegal guns.

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On a related note, even those British criminals who don’t have a gun are often more than able to harm or kill their unarmed, physically weaker victims.  In other words, even if gun control did result in a situation where neither the criminal nor victim was armed, the victim would still likely suffer.  As an example, this elderly British man was tortured to death in his own home by unarmed criminals who incorrectly thought he had large amounts of cash they could steal.  This elderly British woman was severely beaten and left for dead by an unarmed sadistic home invader who simply felt like harming another human for the fun of it.  Similarly, this disabled woman was slashed with a knife by a gang of teenagers who attacked her and stabbed her dog to death for no reason at all.  As a final example, I would note the stabbing death of Pat Regan, who was an anti-gun crusader.  Again, looking at crime statistics rather than anecdotal evidence, stabbings in Britain have risen since the gun ban was enacted, and the stabbing of juveniles is up a staggering 72% over the last 10 years.

If gun control could have worked anywhere, it would have been in Britain.  That is because Britain is a relatively small country that is surrounded by water, which makes things more difficult for gun smugglers and easier for police.  Contrast that with the United States, which has many times the landmass and largely unprotected borders to the North and South.  British criminal defendants also have fewer constitutional protection than, say, American criminal defendants, again making it tougher for them to escape conviction and easier for the police and prosecutors.  Furthermore, the British live in the most surveilled society in human history, with police controlled cameras blanketing their cities. Yet the gun control laws have failed in the environment where they had the greatest possibility of success. American proponents of gun control should take note of these facts, and realize that just as a law against murder doesn’t stop criminals from killing their victims, a gun ban is just another law for criminals to ignore.