As I regularly speak my mind on both political and social issues meeting opposition or indeed being shouted at is something I am used to. Being pro gun this is unfortunately expected, and the majority of ridicule I receive is from left leaning regressive liberals or those who know nothing about guns. Recently however I have discovered an enemy of shooters that is amongst us in our own community, a faction that actually hurts our sport and helps those who want to restrict our freedoms even further. Yes, I’m talking about the “I have a shotgun and think the laws are fine” brigade. Or in other words gun owners that actively encourage more restrictions and red tape.
Today I made a comment post in a few gun groups and a full post on a page on Facebook as a social experiment. The premis was very simple, I simply said one line in the groups, stood back and waited. The line was as follows, “I think the UK should repeal the handgun ban, the fact target shooters have to use oversized barrel pistols is ridiculous and the ban was nothing more than a knee jerk reaction”.
For the page I outlined a full description of my thoughts and complaints about the current system. It was a little ranty but it is a subject I am passionate about.
Needless to say most people in the groups supported my statement, of course they did. As any shooter would, nobody likes the government telling them they can’t be trusted to own a standard pistol, or have to live with over the top restrictions. I fully agree with a licensing system yes, what I don’t agree with is over the top anti gun bias and propaganda from those who are supposed to serve us.
It wasn’t long until they appeared from their hiding places.
“stop talking rubbish and go push your rubbish on a trump or ukip site..”
“No shooter needs a magazine over 5 rounds or a caliber bigger than .22”
“The laws are there to stop crime”
and comments like this one on the page post,
This attitude always disappoints me, especially in a “pro gun” group. I don’t want the government treating me like a child, I don’t want restrictions on magazines or ammo, I don’t want to have to use clownish looking pistols because those in power think it will stop crime. (Below is a UK legal, on license, pistol club handgun. Ridiculous looking isn’t it.)
The truth is all gun restrictions do is penalise the law abiding and make life more difficult for those that try to live on the right side of the law. Criminals don’t use registered guns for a very simple reason, they don’t want it traced back to them. So they go to the booming black market, buy whatever they like from a fully auto AK to an easily concealed PPK. Get as much ammo as they can conceal and no background checks, no safe inspections, no licensing and it’s all untraceable. But how I hear you ask do these weapons get into the UK? How do they obtain them, well the answer is very simple, open borders.
Guns coming from the east and left over firearms from the Cold War and conflicts are the main cargo of the modern day smuggler. The fact you can drive quite easily from one country to another in Europe without checks is the gun runners dream. So to give you the scale of the problem London police confiscate around 400 illegal guns every month.
I realise of course this sounds far fetched, the UK after all seems to be proud of the fact we are “gun free”. We however are far from it and no amount of prohibition or restrictions will change that fact. Besides, guns are far from complicated machines, with simple metal work skills it is very easy to construct a single shot pistol or two pipes and a nail slam fire shotgun, so if someone was determined enough they could fabricate one.
However I digress, my point is that those in the community who support draconian restrictions are letting all of us down. They make it easy for the law makers to treat us all like infants devoid of common sense, they judge us with their own standards of acceptability. I’m not an idiot, I can handle a pistol safely without it being a replica of the comically oversized firearm used by the Joker in Michael Keaton’s Batman (see below),
I believe in freedom and believe government should serve you not the other way around, I believe everyone should have the right to shoot for recreation and access to clubs should be easy. Pistols should be no different to any other firearm, so why does government go out of their way to make life difficult for those of us who enjoy shooting them at targets for fun?
It’s time we had an adult conversation about repealing the Pistol ban on the UK mainland, here in Northern Ireland we have full access to standard pistols if you are a club member, we can even have concealed carry if required. Why should the rest of our beautiful United Kingdom be different?
Just my thoughts, however I can already hear grumbling coming from those that disagree. It’s a shame I don’t care and will continue to speak my mind.
Until next blog.