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Look at crime data after the gun bans
Letter to the Editor
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Published: 2/19/2008 12:09 AM

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This is in response to Gus Gustafson's Feb. 11 letter advocating gun control so that our country could be the same as Great Britain, Australia and others.

Since England banned all guns in November 1997, gun crime has gone up. As recently as 2006, Scotland Yard noted that more people than ever are carrying firearms as fashion accessories. These are not the law-biding citizens. They are not allowed to carry.

A report in January 2006 showed offense involving guns soared by as much as 50 percent in some parts of the country. Kings College in London found that the use of handguns in crime rose by 40 percent in the two years after the weapons were banned.

"Hot" burglary rates, defined as burglaries committed while people are in the building, is 13 percent in the U.S. and in gun-free Great Britain it's 59 percent.

An American study showed that the No. 1 explanation from would-be burglars not to enter an occupied building was: "I might get shot."

The Australian Bureau of Statistics has shown that manslaughter rates or the attempted murder rate have not changed significantly since the gun bans have gone into effect.

Parliament repealed the long-standing British Common Law right justifying the use of deadly force to defend oneself and one's property against a home invasion. Now, a homeowner repelling a burglar is liable for assault and even murder charges.

Farmer Tony Martin languishes in a British fail for self-defense against burglars. Crime figures in Britain are a sham. If a burglar hits 15 or 20 flats, only one crime was added to the statistics.

If three men kill a woman during an argument outside a bar, they are arrested for murder, but because the main witness is dead, charges are eventually dropped. In America, the event counts as a three-person homicide, but in British statistics, it counts as nothing at all.

As a final note Britain and Australia top U.S. in violent crime.

Robert Chmela

Elgin