Mudcat Café message #3454213 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #148617   Message #3454213
Posted By: Rob Naylor
19-Dec-12 - 08:07 AM
Thread Name: BS: Shooting tragedies and guns
Subject: RE: BS: Shooting tragedies and guns
How many stories can you find of ANYONE who has, with a quickly accessed weapon, successfully protected their home against actual (not 'imagined') danger? I will bet that there are MORE stories of sad mistakes by nervous homeowners

I remember having a debate in the letters section of the London Evening Standard back in about 1994. It was about the routine arming of UK police. I pointed out that in that year, of 48,000 New York police officers, 43 had been killed or injured with firearms....but 26 of those were by negligent discharges of their own or colleagues' weapons.

Others argued that in the UK, since only a small proportion of police officers were firearms-trained, to a high standard, it was unlikely to be a problem. I believe that was the same week that 3 City of London police officers were wounded when their highly-trained colleague dropped his H&K MP5 onto the canteen table and it went off. I think that in that year, 5 UK police officers were injured by firearms...4 by their own or colleagues' negligent discharges.

This year has been unusual in that 3 UK police officers have been shot dead (half of all those shot dead in the last 15 years) by criminals. But it's also seen 3 officers wounded and 1 killed by their own or colleagues' negligent discharges.

If such a high proportion of firearms injuries to police officers, who are supposed to be trained to a much higher standard than members of the public would be, are the result of negligent discharges, I'd be absolutely astonished if ready access to weapons at home or in public saved even a fraction of the extra lives it *cost* in accidental shootings.