The United Kingdom has historically enjoyed a low crime and murder rate, and has very strict gun laws. This fact has regularly been exploited by anti-gun politicians and cultural elites on both sides of the Atlantic to push the dangerous lie that gun control is necessary in the fight against crime and violence.
But when the UK’s crime rate – even its violent crime rate – reached the highest in Western Europe about fifteen years ago, some in the United States (myself included) wondered if the day might come when Britons begin to question the wisdom of gun control. The ice began to crack in 2014, when leader of the UKIP party Nigel Farage publicly criticized England’s 1997 handgun ban and argued that it has only served to arm criminals at the expense of law-abiding citizens.
He was right, and conditions have only worsened. By nearly every measure crime is higher in the UK today than every other western industrialized society on the planet – including the United States. In Birmingham, the UK’s second largest city (about 1.1 million people), shootings are becoming normal. A documentary film-maker said that he had to “wear the same body armor that I wore in Syria” when filming there.
The situation in London (about 8.7 million people) is dire. It has just surpassed New York City(!) in murders this year, according to the BBC. The New York Times reported on April 7 that London is averaging three killings per week. The weapon of choice is the knife, but drive-by shootings and fatal beatings add to the death toll. Surgeons at one East London hospital are comparing it to a war zone. Youths and children with knife and gunshot wounds are increasing. London also has three times as many rapes as the Big Apple.
While rampaging political correctness has UK police prosecuting people for bad jokes and for defending themselves, decent citizens are being brutalized in record-breaking numbers. Cleverly forgotten is the promise made by left-wing politicians two decades ago, that draconian gun control would keep the UK from “being like America.” Those who propose civilian disarmament as an anti-crime policy must look elsewhere for support. Gun control has definitely not lowered crime or made anyone safer in the UK.