Reply To: Did gun control work in Australia?


I know it hasn’t worked in Great Britain (though it’s often claimed that it has). I’d be curious if this was really the case in Australia, but I suspect it might be – but note the underlaying draconian ambition, here: Australia didn’t just outlaw sale of new weapons, or of certain weapons. It essentially confiscated them all. Also, as alluded to in the article, as part of their ban Australia effectively outlawed self defense (which Britain, as a practical matter, has also done – in many cases, you’re more likely to be charged for a crime in Britain defending yourself from an assailant – with the assailant called to testify against you – than you are if you initiate a crime).

Plus, it is obvious that gun control is not a necessary feature of reducing or eliminating crime: as Peter Hitchens (Christopher’s anti-war brother) has pointed out, Britain in the 1920s had gun laws (or rather, almost no gun laws) that make today’s gun laws in Texas look strict. But Britain then had hardly any gun crime. Ten years ago Britain introduced strict gun control laws – and gun related crime has gone up 89%. See also: Switzerland. A country that does the exact opposite of disarming law-abiding citizens. Instead it hands them automatic (not just semi-automatic) weapons. Switzerland has very little gun violence.

The reason for higher crime isn’t the presence of guns. But this is what they want to go after, because they have always wanted to go after guns, and episodes like the recent one give them an excuse/rationale. But they don’t want to address other (and the real) factors behind such events, so…they don’t. (Note some of those include things that I think Libertarians would have a problem with: such as “deinstitutionalization,” the increased difficulty in any attempt at involuntarily institutionalizing someone who is dangerously psychotic).

OtoH, I saw a facebook post to the effect that mass killings stopped by the police average over 18 deaths, while attempts at mass killings which are stopped by armed civilians on the scene (meaning: concealed carry) average only 2.2 deaths per incident. But while people writing, say, Slate articles, want to bandy about a lot of statistics – they do so tendentiously. They never want to mention the statistics on crimes prevented by armed private individuals. It doesn’t fit the narrative.