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Author Topic: Dealing with Social Breakdown  (Read 8980 times)
Crafty_Dog
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« on: August 10, 2011, 10:32:08 AM »

I'd like to open a discussion about what a citizen is to do when living in the UK context.  Guns are not a legal option, nor are knives.  What to do?  (I gather the sales of baseball bats have gone through the roof.) What else?   Worth thinking about:  How to organize the neighborhood?
« Last Edit: September 02, 2011, 12:34:19 PM by Crafty_Dog » Logged
Doppelgangster
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« Reply #1 on: August 10, 2011, 10:38:21 AM »

Cricket bats?
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #2 on: August 10, 2011, 12:00:28 PM »

Good idea grin

I'm hearing that the authorities are telling neighborhoods NOT to organize  huh
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Cranewings
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« Reply #3 on: August 10, 2011, 06:25:12 PM »

Good idea grin

I'm hearing that the authorities are telling neighborhoods NOT to organize  huh

I thought gang battles were the national past time over their:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LKBPeLfnCSQ
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #4 on: August 10, 2011, 07:40:20 PM »

A lot of obvious stuff in here, but perhaps one or two points worthy of consideration:

Vice President of Tactical Intelligence Scott Stewart discusses personal safety during mob violence situations while using the recent London riots as an example.


Editor’s Note: Transcripts are generated using speech-recognition technology. Therefore, STRATFOR cannot guarantee their complete accuracy.

In today’s Dispatch we’re going to change gears a little bit and take a tactical and a practical look at riots and using the topic of the London riots, discuss how people should behave and what you should do when riots happen.

It needs to be understood that riots and mob activity can and quite frequently do turn violent. It is still very important for regular citizens just to maintain a heightened alert of situational awareness during times of civil disobedience. So what you’re going to want to do is really keep alert as to what’s going on through the news media. You are going to obviously want to keep your eyes and ears open to see what is happening on the street outside your hotel or outside your residence or business. In a lot of recent riots including the London riot, there have been a lot of rumors that the protesters are actually using twitter and instant messaging and blackberries to coordinate their movements. If you can find out which twitter feeds that the protesters are using, that can allow you to really monitor where they’re going, what their intentions are and that can also help you stay one step ahead of them and help you stay out of trouble.

If you are a foreigner you are going to want to make sure that you’re connected with your government and with your embassy. A lot of governments allow you to register and they will send out either text warnings or email warnings to you that will let you know when things are going on. One of the positive things about being registered with your embassy is that if it does become necessary to evacuate from a country — especially a Third World country that’s kind of remote — it’s nice to be on the Embassy system so they know you’re there, they will be looking for you and they will account for you when they are looking for space to get you out whether it is on a ship or an aircraft.

If you are a resident in a city like London or you’re just a visitor, the second thing that you want to do is to start looking at your contingency plans and your fly-away kit. You want to make sure that you have everything you need packed and ready to go in case you need to run. It’s also important to remember that most security measures and physical security measures were made to protect against one threat but not really the mob violence threat. Many times in a mob violence type situation, they can turn into a confining cage that can actually endanger you. If a mob has time and they have sledgehammers, pipes, they can break through bulletproof windows or bullet resistant windows, they can break through heavy doors and they can get into a facility given that time. It may take a half-hour, it may take 40 minutes but they can get through those the security measures so just because you have good security at your site, doesn’t mean that you don’t have to be prepared to get out of there and to fly to safety.

One of the things after we’ve gotten intelligence on our eyes, once we examine our contingency plans and our fly-away kits we also then want to figure out exactly where our line is when we’re going to want to withdraw, and this is going to be something that each individual is going to have to come up with themselves; when the rioters get to such and such an intersection such and such block, this is the place where I’m going to want to make my escape and get out of the area.

There are also different kinds of mob violence and it’s important to remember that. In cases like London it’s basically general, you have a lot of looting and some of this is really kind of a financially motivated. You have kids that are hitting sporting goods stores to steal sneakers, they are hitting electronics stores; it’s not really directed against any one group or any sort of ethnicity. However, there are other cases we’ve seen some past London riots, for example the May Day riots in 2000, we had a very anti-globalization campaign going on and in those kinds of riots multinational corporations and hotels and banks and restaurants were attacked just because they were a part of these globalized chains. So really understanding what the riots are about, what’s motivating the mob and who they are going to target is very important in creating your plan and creating your understanding of when you need to pull out of the area. Once the mob is attacking there’s really very little that a person can do to defend themselves or their property and it’s really at that point where you need to forget about the property and be much more concerned about saving life.

« Last Edit: August 10, 2011, 07:48:12 PM by Crafty_Dog » Logged
Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #5 on: August 10, 2011, 07:49:20 PM »

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/nilegardiner/100100323/if-british-shopkeepers-had-the-right-to-bear-arms-vicious-thugs-would-think-twice-before-looting/






If British shopkeepers had the right to bear arms, vicious thugs would think twice before looting




By Nile Gardiner
World
Last updated: August 10th, 2011





Turks on the streets of Dalston on Monday night
 
During the Los Angeles riots in 1992, many store owners in the south central part of the city defended their property against marauding gangs with their own weapons, and succeeded in protecting their livelihoods and thousands of jobs that depended on them. And across the country, Americans admired their bravery, thankful for the Second Amendment to the US Constitution which protects their right to keep and bear arms, and thereby defend themselves, their families and their property. In contrast in London in 2011, shopkeepers were left at the mercy of feral, brutal thugs acting with impunity across whole swathes of the capital as the police were overwhelmed. If they had the right to bear arms and defend their stores with force, it would have been a very different story, and brutal looters would have met firm resistance.
 
Britain’s gun laws are among the most draconian in the world, yet the nation has some of the highest levels of violent crime and burglary in the West, and there is no shortage of gun crime in major cities such as London and Manchester. While criminal gangs are often able to acquire firearms on the black market, ordinary law-abiding British citizens are barred from owning guns for self-defence.
 
The riots in London, the West Midlands and the North West should prompt a renewed debate in Britain over the right to bear arms by private citizens. The shocking scenes of looting across the country are a reminder that the police cannot always be relied upon to protect homes and businesses during a period of widespread social disorder. The defence of life and property can never be entrusted solely to the state, not least when there is a complete breakdown in law and order. As we have seen this week in Britain, when individuals are barred from defending their own property from mobs of vicious thugs, sheer anarchy and terror reins
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #6 on: August 10, 2011, 11:53:41 PM »

http://bigpeace.com/elcid/2011/08/09/sign-in-front-of-brit-shop-says-it-all/
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #7 on: August 11, 2011, 10:54:25 PM »

http://www.epicfail.com/2011/08/11/rioter-fail/
« Last Edit: August 12, 2011, 12:14:57 AM by Crafty_Dog » Logged
Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #8 on: August 12, 2011, 12:15:11 AM »

http://ricochet.com/main-feed/Rioting-for-Fun-and-Profit

Rioting for Fun and Profit
Paul A. Rahe · 9 hours ago

The riots in Britain are instructive. There is, according to The Wall Street Journal, one neighborhood where the rioters backed off. In the North London neighborhood of Dalton, we are told,

Hundreds of Turkish and Kurdish men, many armed with broken billiard cues, poured onto the streets to protect their businesses and homes from the kind of mayhem that was laying waste to other parts of London.

"They created a barrier and chased the kids back," said Burcu Bay, who works as a waitress at Tugra, a Turkish sweet shop and cafe on Dalston's main thoroughfare. "It was like being in a war."

What happened in Dalston, an area defined by its large Turkish and Kurdish immigrant community, was a rare instance of locals uniting to defy the wave of violence that has swept London in recent nights, leaving a trail of burned-out buildings, looted shops and broken glass. In other areas, rioters encountered little resistance, as terrified locals took cover and stretched police were.


The clashes in Dalston, a ramshackle neighborhood of pawn shops, Turkish social clubs and kebab joints, began when a gang of about 50 youths approached the area from the east, setting fire to a bus and smashing in the windows of a chain restaurant, a bank and an electrical goods shop.

Dozens of local men came out on the street to block their progress. Over the course of the evening, they pushed back the heavily outnumbered troublemakers in three separate surges, driving them away from a cluster of Turkish-owned shops and businesses. Women and elderly men sought refuge in local cafés to watch the clashes from a safe distance.

In some instances, skirmishes turned violent. "The police wanted to arrest one of my friends because he punched some of the guys," said a waiter at the Somine restaurant. "We didn't let them."

A key driver behind the locals' response was the strong sense of communal identity among Turkish and Kurdish residents of Dalston, who saw the rioters as a kind of alien invasion. "These people weren't local," said the waiter. "We've been here for ten years and would have known them if they were from the area."

The article – written by Guy Chazan and Jeanne Whalen with help from Peter Evans – is a nice piece of reporting. It tells you everything that you need to know – right down to the crucial fact that the police wanted to arrest one man for punching a thug intent on stealing his property. What is happening right now in London and in cities to the north could best be described as a self-inflicted wound.

Do you remember the riots a year or two ago in Paris and in other French cities and the burning of cars along the Champs Ėlysées? What you may not remember is something else that was reported in passing at the time – that, for some years prior to these riots, one hundred cars a night were being torched in the cities of France. I passed through Paris not long after these events, and a French professor I know told me that this latter piece of news came as a real shock to her. The truth is that the police had, in effect, abandoned the Muslim neighborhoods and that impecunious, hard-working Muslims living in these neighborhoods, men and women who had scrimped and saved to buy jalopies, had been losing them to the thugs for some time. None of this was reported until the disorders spread from the slums in the suburbs to the wealthy districts of Paris.


Something of the same sort can be said about Britain as well. There are two dimensions to the British story. First – although what we call the right to bear arms had its origins as an English right, guaranteed in the 1688/89 Declaration of Rights and Bill of Rights – that right was  gradually abrogated in the course of the twentieth century. Second – although the right to self-defense, the right to defend one’s person and property when the authorities cannot in a timely and effective fashion provide protection – is a natural right and had always, until recently, been recognized as such in Britain – that right, too, was abrogated in the course of the last century. There is a very fine book on the subject by my friend Joyce Lee Malcolm, author of To Keep and Bear Arms: The Origins of an Anglo-American Right. Entitled Guns and Violence: The English Experience, it was published by Harvard University Press seven years ago. Her two books ought to be force-fed to every member of Parliament.

For some time now – and this was already true, alas, in the Thatcher years – the political class (Labour, Tory, and Liberal) has been united behind the principle that these matters must be left to the police – that, if one’s life or limbs are in danger, one can of course use force to defend one’s person but that one cannot rightfully lift a finger to defend one’s property and that, if the attack extends to one’s person, the force that one deploys in its defense must be strictly proportionate to the threat. If, for example, your home was burglarized over and over again and you secured a gun, a knife, or a baseball bat and killed or harmed an intruder, you would go to prison for a long stay.

I am not making this up. I was a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford between 1971 and 1974. I was a visiting fellow at Clare Hall, Cambridge in the spring of 1999, and I was a visiting fellow at All Souls College, Oxford in 2005/6. In the quarter-century that passed between my first stint in the UK and my second, Britain changed. I remember a man living in a rural area being sent to prison for what amounted to life for killing someone who had repeatedly broken into his home.


I remember other things as well. When I was at Cambridge University, my wife and I went into London one evening to go to the opera. Our return on the train was decidedly uncomfortable. Our car – and the other cars nearby – came to be filled with young women and men (mostly the latter) who were drunk and disorderly. There was no one on the train to prevent them from making our trip a real misery. Had we said a word, I have no doubt that the crowd would have turned on us. It reminds me a bit of what it was like in New York City in the summer of 1969. The hooligans were in command.

In fact, it was worse than that. One evening, a group of thugs took the train into Cambridge from a nearby town, walked to Clare Hall, hurled bricks through the windows, broke into the apartments, stole computers, then marched to the train station and journeyed home. No one was ever caught.

I am told that fewer than ten percent of burglaries are solved and that, of those who are convicted, fewer than ten percent do time. In effect, there is no law and there is no order in Britain. You cannot bear arms. You are denied the means of self-defense. It is illegal to use force to defend your property. If you use “disproportionate force” in defending your person, you can and will be jailed. It is demanded that you leave all such matters to the police, and law enforcement is ineffectual. Not surprisingly, even before the riots that Britain is suffering right now, theft and violent crime were considerably greater there than in the United States.

In Britain, they have a lot to learn – or relearn – and it is an open question whether these recent events will give rise to a bout of a rethinking or not. I rather doubt that David Cameron has the backbone, and one cannot look to the Liberals or to Labour. Those associated with the last-mentioned party, which is out of power right now, will whine and whine about “social justice.” In the United Kingdom, as in the United States, a left-liberal is someone who pities the criminal, not the victim.

In the US, we are generally better off. For one thing, we incarcerate criminals. There has been much hand-wringing about this in recent years, as our own left-liberals fulminate against the incarceration rate. But there is one truth that cannot be gainsaid: a criminal who is locked up is not on the streets committing crimes. Lock them up and the crime rate will go down (as it has in the US).

We are better off in other ways as well. The right to bear arms is not only given lip service here. In recent years, it has been reasserted by the Supreme Court. Moreover, in many states, one has a right to defend one’s property. In those states, if someone breaks into my home, I can kill him with impunity. And, finally, thanks in part to the example of Rudy Giuliani in New York, we have policing methods aimed at concentrating attention on high-crime areas and on harassing criminals that really work.


The appearance of flash mobs in Philadelphia and Chicago is, however, a warning. I would like to know more than I do about the incarceration rate in Pennsylvania and Illinois, about the policing methods used, and about the laws pertinent to the right of a shopkeeper to gun down thieves.

In times like these, it is useful to remember the immortal words of John Adams: “We talk of liberty and property, but, if we cut up the law of self-defence, we cut up the foundation of both. . . . If a robber meets me in the street, and commands me to surrender my purse, I have a right to kill him without asking questions.” 
 

 
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Bambi
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« Reply #9 on: August 12, 2011, 10:26:56 AM »

"one can of course use force to defend one’s person but that one cannot rightfully lift a finger to defend one’s property and that, if the attack extends to one’s person, the force that one deploys in its defense must be strictly proportionate to the threat"

I'm fairly sure that he's wrong, Common law in the uk allows people to use reasonable force to prevent any crime, including crimes against property
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G M
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« Reply #10 on: August 12, 2011, 10:59:37 AM »

"one can of course use force to defend one’s person but that one cannot rightfully lift a finger to defend one’s property and that, if the attack extends to one’s person, the force that one deploys in its defense must be strictly proportionate to the threat"

I'm fairly sure that he's wrong, Common law in the uk allows people to use reasonable force to prevent any crime, including crimes against property

I'm no expert in UK law, but I recall more than one horror story of citizens in the UK getting jammed up for legit acts of self-defense.
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JDN
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« Reply #11 on: August 12, 2011, 11:10:14 AM »

GM is right; even self defense laws in the UK are rather draconian.

That said, legislation is now being considered that a person can use "reasonable force" to defend their property as well.

The key, still undecided is what is "reasonable force". 
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prentice crawford
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« Reply #12 on: August 12, 2011, 01:08:31 PM »

Woof,
 If a mob is in the process of looting then burning down everything you've worked for and denying you the means by which you support your family then I say it's reasonable to level a weapon at them and start shooting and I think having it widely know that someone will kill them if they engage in this kind of barbarity would prove a strong deterrent from having it happening in the first place.
                                                           P.C.
« Last Edit: August 12, 2011, 03:08:02 PM by prentice crawford » Logged

JDN
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« Reply #13 on: August 12, 2011, 02:27:24 PM »

I think you have watched too many movies.   smiley
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prentice crawford
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« Reply #14 on: August 12, 2011, 02:58:39 PM »



Woof JDN,
 This picture isn't from a movie, it's from the LA riots. These are Korean American store owners keeping gangs of looters from robbing and then burning their store to the ground. Their store still stands where many others were burned down.
                        P.C.
« Last Edit: August 12, 2011, 03:00:59 PM by prentice crawford » Logged

JDN
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« Reply #15 on: August 12, 2011, 03:21:58 PM »

Great photo, looks cool, but to my knowledge not one looter was shot and killed from this or any other rooftop.

If they had, and only their property was at stake, i.e. no direct threat to them since they are on the rooftop, they would be arrested and probably
sent to prison for a long time.

Sorry, my movie comment stands; you can't sit on the rooftop with your Barrett 50mm rifle and pick off looters who are carrying away your store's TV or refrigerators.  You can't kill people for "denying you the means by which you support your family".  Unless you or another human being's life is directly threatened, that's murder and you will go to jail far far longer than any looter who stole your inventory.

I suggest you consider the consequences before you start shooting.

Stay home and buy good insurance.
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prentice crawford
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« Reply #16 on: August 12, 2011, 03:37:47 PM »

Woof JDN,
 If you were in a building and someone set it on fire would you consider your life endangered? BTW four people were shot by store owers in the LA riots.
 

 Professor Pamela Oliver
Department of Sociology 

Deaths in the 1992 LA Riot
Past students expressed concern about my not mentioning White people killed in the 1992 Los Angeles riot. Besides Reginald Denny, who was beaten but not killed, there were three other White people who were killed in front of witnesses during the riot. Of course, these were not the only people killed in the riot. Most who were killed were Black and Latino.

Deaths in the 1992 Los Angeles Riot

 
 Shot by police or NatGuard
 Shot by Store Owners
 Shot by Other, Seen
 Shot, Not Seen
 Arson
 Sticks & boards + stabbed + strangled
 Car accident (incl. hit & run)
 Total
 
Black
 6
 1
 7
 3
 1
 0
 7
 25
 
Latino
 5
 2
 3
 1
 1
 3
 1
 16
 
White
 0
 0
 5
 0
 1
 2
 0
 8
 
Asian
 0
 0
 1
 1
 0
 0
 0
 2
 
Algerian
 0
 1
 0
 0
 0
 0
 0
 1
 
Indian or Middle East
 0
 0
 0
 0
 1
 0
 0
 1
 
Total
 11
 4
 16
 5
 4
 5
 8
 53
 
                                      P.C.
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Bambi
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« Reply #17 on: August 12, 2011, 04:16:04 PM »

"one can of course use force to defend one’s person but that one cannot rightfully lift a finger to defend one’s property and that, if the attack extends to one’s person, the force that one deploys in its defense must be strictly proportionate to the threat"

I'm fairly sure that he's wrong, Common law in the uk allows people to use reasonable force to prevent any crime, including crimes against property

I'm no expert in UK law, but I recall more than one horror story of citizens in the UK getting jammed up for legit acts of self-defense.

I'm no expert in policing in the states, so I avoid judging US police forces solely on the horror stories about police brutality that show up in the media here from time to time.  Coming to conclusions based on emotive cases that get hyped in the press is rarely useful.


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G M
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« Reply #18 on: August 12, 2011, 04:17:37 PM »

"one can of course use force to defend one’s person but that one cannot rightfully lift a finger to defend one’s property and that, if the attack extends to one’s person, the force that one deploys in its defense must be strictly proportionate to the threat"

I'm fairly sure that he's wrong, Common law in the uk allows people to use reasonable force to prevent any crime, including crimes against property

I'm no expert in UK law, but I recall more than one horror story of citizens in the UK getting jammed up for legit acts of self-defense.

I'm no expert in policing in the states, so I avoid judging US police forces solely on the horror stories about police brutality that show up in the media here from time to time.  Coming to conclusions based on emotive cases that get hyped in the press is rarely useful.



Good point!
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JDN
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« Reply #19 on: August 12, 2011, 04:24:40 PM »

Woof JDN,
 If you were in a building and someone set it on fire would you consider your life endangered? BTW four people were shot by store owers in the LA riots.
 



My life might be in danger if the building I was in was on fire, but that still does not necessarily give me the right to shoot the guy who set the fire after the fact especially if I have another way to retreat.  Nor does it give me the right to shoot him if he has already left and is walking down the street with my inventory.

As for the four people shot by store owners, I couldn't find a definitive source.  Is it confirmed or merely speculated that four were shot by store owners?  Further, circumstances of each death are important.

If I'm in the store and you come in with a gun or knife, threatening me, I have every right to defend myself and shoot you. 

I do not have the right to shoot someone for merely start carrying out (stealing) inventory. 

However, my main point in this discussion is that you absolutely do not have the right to sit up on your roof and play sniper, shooting anyone carrying
a refrigerator or TV set.  You will go to jail for a very long time.
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Point Dog
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« Reply #20 on: August 13, 2011, 03:58:43 AM »

Gentlemen, I've avoided entering this conversation.

a) The majority of posters here seem to be of the die-hard republican variety, a political concept with is looked upon with some bemusement in the UK by the majority of the public.  Consider that Obama has good press over here, the only dent being how long it took him to commit initially to Lybia (and people here understand why he wouldn't want to commit his country to another war).  Actually having a meaningful political conversation here is difficult for those of us who live outside of the US as generally wee are ignored or looked down upon.

b) The UK majority public view isn't that we have draconian firearms laws, but more that the US (but strangely not Canada) have too relaxed firearms legislation.

c) I believe Niles Gardiner was quoted as a UK journalist here.  Gardiner is a UK national, but is US educated and spent most of his life in the US (in fact I believe he lives in Washington).  Even die hard conservatives consider him right wing and a throwback to the Thatcher years (I think he was a researcher or advisor to Thatchers government).

d) The 'riots' were only really front page news because parliment was in summer break.

e) The 'riots' were allowed to progress because of MPs instructing the Police to 'stand and observe' rather than intervene initially.  This is because there are 12 legal cases still outstanding from the G8 protests about Police 'brutality'.  Also, the political lords misread the situation as politically motivated, rather than criminally.

f) Once the acting Chief Constable decided that it was criminal, rather than political, 9,000 officers were deployed to take control of the streets.  Tactics included driving armoured vehicles at high speed towards 'criminals' to disperse them (seems to have been effective).

g) The acting Chief has asked that people stop calling them rioters, this implies that there is political motivation.

h) Contrary to what our illustrious Prime Minister would have you believe, the Met have always had the capability and authority to deploy baton rounds, rubber bullets, water cannons, gas and call on two army squadrons of police/riot trained infantry. They have chosen not to.

i) In the cities of Glasgow and Dundee, 'rioters' tried to organise.  They were immediately informed on to the Police by friends and family and arrested within two hours.

j) Despite cutbacks in funding, UK volunteer groups have been out in force on the streets to educate youngsters that this is not acceptable.

k) UK police have been identifying criminals from CCTV footage and conducting twilight raids, with courts in London and Birmingham sitting overnight to try and prosecute.

UK society is not collapsing and we are able to police ourselves against criminals of opportunity without the deployment of lethal force and adding that we have and are able to apply even that.  Which is what kicked off these 'riots' in the first place, but I'm sure you are all aware of that.

UK society is not collapsing
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JDN
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« Reply #21 on: August 13, 2011, 09:14:58 AM »

Well put; thank you Point Dog.
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G M
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« Reply #22 on: August 13, 2011, 09:31:40 AM »

b) The UK majority public view isn't that we have draconian firearms laws, but more that the US (but strangely not Canada) have too relaxed firearms legislation.

Sometime back, I did some research and looked at the stats for home invasion/occupied dwelling burglaries in the US, UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. The US had the lowest rates, especially in the states with the "Make my day" type laws that provided immunity from criminal and civil liability for the use of deadly force in the defense of the home. Those tend to be the states with "shall issue" concealed carry permit laws and the lowest levels of street crime. Funny how that works.
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G M
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« Reply #23 on: August 13, 2011, 09:42:33 AM »


http://www.statutes.legis.state.tx.us/docs/PE/htm/PE.9.htm

Sec. 9.42. DEADLY FORCE TO PROTECT PROPERTY. A person is justified in using deadly force against another


to protect land or tangible, movable property:
(1) if he would be justified in using force against the other under Section 9.41; and

(2) when and to the degree he reasonably believes the deadly force is immediately necessary:

(A) to prevent the other's imminent commission of arson, burglary, robbery, aggravated robbery, theft during the nighttime, or criminal mischief during the nighttime; or

(B) to prevent the other who is fleeing immediately after committing burglary, robbery, aggravated robbery, or theft during the nighttime from escaping with the property; and

(3) he reasonably believes that:

(A) the land or property cannot be protected or recovered by any other means; or

(B) the use of force other than deadly force to protect or recover the land or property would expose the actor or another to a substantial risk of death or serious bodily injury.

**From memory, New Mexico is another state that allows for deadly force to prevent arson. Unfortunately, not every state is that enlightened.
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G M
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« Reply #24 on: August 13, 2011, 10:10:12 AM »

Great photo, looks cool, but to my knowledge not one looter was shot and killed from this or any other rooftop.

If they had, and only their property was at stake, i.e. no direct threat to them since they are on the rooftop, they would be arrested and probably
sent to prison for a long time.

Sorry, my movie comment stands; you can't sit on the rooftop with your Barrett 50mm rifle and pick off looters who are carrying away your store's TV or refrigerators.  You can't kill people for "denying you the means by which you support your family".  Unless you or another human being's life is directly threatened, that's murder and you will go to jail far far longer than any looter who stole your inventory.

I suggest you consider the consequences before you start shooting.

Stay home and buy good insurance.

There is no such thing as a "Barrett 50mm rifle", JDN. There are Barrett rifles chambered for .50 caliber BMG.

Some people are not content to hide under their beds when there is a threat.
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JDN
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« Reply #25 on: August 13, 2011, 10:12:39 AM »

The way I read this statue, a neighborhood kid could come on to your property at night, steal your bicycle (theft during the nighttime)  and you could shoot him in the back as he pedaled (fleeing away) away to stop him from escaping with your property.

I'm not sure I would call that an "enlightened" law. 
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prentice crawford
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« Reply #26 on: August 13, 2011, 10:19:47 AM »

Woof JDN,
 You are mixing the lines of what is vigilantism and what is self defense under the law. If you are in a full blown riot, with gangs looting and burning down the buildings around you and they approach your building next, you have every right to stand your ground, in some cases I would say you would be putting yourself in more danger if you tried to leave, and I think it reasonable to you arm yourself to deter them from doing to you what they have done to everyone else up to that point. If they attack anyway then the owner would be justified in shooting at that point. What you described is nothing like that and it is not what I'm saying that I or anyone else should do. Shooting people at random just because they are in the street or even someone that's walking away with some of your stuff is not what I or anyother law abiding citizen should do and you're right that's not self defense and anyone doing something like that is a criminal. You seem to want to paint anyone defending themselves in this type of situation as being a criminal themselves and that simply is not the case.
 The guys on the roof in the picture I posted were up there as a deterrent, when groups approached the building they would warn them to stop and go away and they could this without putting themselves in danger by being down on the street and of course they could see what was coming. Others were inside the building guarding the doors, behind cover, and ready to shoot anyone that tried to break in or set a fire. They didn't have to kill anyone and were successfully in saving their store. An important part about gun ownership that many ignore is the deterrent factor and how many lives are saved because of it. We always hear about how many people died in these situations but there are no statistics for how many lives were saved by firearms and note that many of the deaths were caused by means other than firearms.
                                                         P.C.
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JDN
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« Reply #27 on: August 13, 2011, 10:21:58 AM »


There is no such thing as a "Barrett 50mm rifle", JDN. There are Barrett rifles chambered for .50 caliber BMG.

Some people are not content to hide under their beds when there is a threat.


Who cares?  I don't own one and never will.  You got my point. 

And if there is a "threat" to me or my family, I have no problem using lethal force.  However, different than you, I do have a problem
shooting and killing someone who is no immediate threat to me or anyone else for merely taking property.

IMHO that person is a murderer and deserves a "bed" in jail for a long time in my opinion.  They can sleep on it or sleep under it.
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G M
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« Reply #28 on: August 13, 2011, 10:23:53 AM »

The way I read this statue, a neighborhood kid could come on to your property at night, steal your bicycle (theft during the nighttime)  and you could shoot him in the back as he pedaled (fleeing away) away to stop him from escaping with your property.

I'm not sure I would call that an "enlightened" law. 

Being a criminal should be dangerous. When criminals get shot, it tends to discourage criminal behavior. It is enlightened and effective.
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« Reply #29 on: August 13, 2011, 10:25:19 AM »



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lUaoil0wsyU
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G M
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« Reply #30 on: August 13, 2011, 10:27:30 AM »

Hoooray for the Koreans! Most all S. Korean males were required to serve in the S. Korean military for a few years, so have some degree of weapons training.
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prentice crawford
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« Reply #31 on: August 13, 2011, 10:38:30 AM »

Quote
UK society is not collapsing and we are able to police ourselves against criminals of opportunity without the deployment of lethal force and adding that we have and are able to apply even that.  Which is what kicked off these 'riots' in the first place, but I'm sure you are all aware of that.

UK society is not collapsing
 Point Dog

Woof Point Dog,
 I'm sure the 4 dead so far will be eternally grateful for that. tongue


A 68-year-old man who was set upon as he tried to stamp out a fire during the London riots has died, becoming the fourth victim in three days of explosive violence that rocked the capital.  
  
Richard Mannington Bowes was badly beaten, suffering head injuries, in Ealing, West London on Tuesday morning (NZT) after remonstrating with teenagers who were setting fire to two industrial bins outside a shopping centre.

Officers who went to his aid were pelted with missiles and driven off, leaving the senior citizen to fend for himself against his assailant.

The Ealing resident was placed on a life-support machine following the attack, but died this morning, Scotland Yard said.
  
"This was a brutal incident that resulted in the senseless killing of an innocent man," Detective Chief Inspector John McFarlane, of the Met's Homicide and Serious Crime Command said.

"I still need the assistance of the community who may have witnessed the attack on Richard, to come forward and provide information or images they may have recorded on mobile devices. This information could be crucial in catching his killer."

Police have issued two CCTV images of a man suspected of carrying out the assault, and said he was actively engaged in the rioting and looting that devastated the area. Detectives say the suspect also appears to be known to a large number of youth in the area.

Cameron vows to fight back

British Prime Minister David Cameron has vowed to hunt down just such criminals and opportunistic looters he blamed for Britain's worst violence in decades, but acknowledged that police tactics had failed at the start of the rioting.
 
"The fightback has well and truly begun," the Conservative leader, grappling with a defining crisis of his 15-month-old premiership, told an emergency session of parliament.
 
"As to the lawless minority, the criminals who've taken what they can get, I say this: We will track you down, we will find you, we will charge you, we will punish you. You will pay for what you have done," Cameron said.
 
Police have arrested more than 1,200 people across England, filling cells and forcing courts to work through the night to process hundreds of cases.
 
Community leaders say inequality, cuts to public services by the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition government and youth unemployment fed into the violence in London, Birmingham, Manchester and other multi-ethnic cities.
 
Cameron is under pressure from different quarters to ease his austerity plans, toughen policing and do more for inner-city communities, even as economic malaise grips a nation whose social and racial tensions exploded in four nights of mayhem.
 
But he denied deprivation or planned government spending cuts, mostly not yet implemented, had caused the riots.
 
"This is not about poverty, it's about culture. A culture that glorifies violence, shows disrespect to authority, and says everything about rights but nothing about responsibilities," Cameron said.
 
The initial police response was inadequate, Cameron told legislators who had been recalled from their summer break. "There were simply far too few police deployed on to the streets. And the tactics they were using weren't working."
 
Defending planned police funding cuts against criticism from opposition Labour leader Ed Miliband, Cameron proposed more police powers, including the right to demand that people remove face coverings if they are suspected of crime.
 


Advertisement
 


"I hope that in the debates we have on the causes we don't fall into a tiresome discussion about resources," said Cameron.
 
"When you have deep moral failures you don't hit them with a wall of money."
 
Hugh Orde, president of the Association of Chief Police Officers, said this week a 20 percent cut in police funding until 2015, planned by the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition, would pose great challenges.
 
"I do sense without question resentment (among police officers) that they are now being portrayed in the routine as corrupt, unprofessional and need sorting out," he told Reuters.
 
The British leader said he would maintain a higher police presence of 16,000 officers on London streets through the weekend and would consider calling in the army for secondary roles in future unrest to free up frontline police.
 
And he promised to compensate people whose property was damaged by rioters, even if they were uninsured. The riots will cost insurers more than 200 million pounds, ($323 million), the Association of British Insurers said, doubling its previous claims estimate.
 
The increase came as British prime minister David Cameron said an 1886 law that allows insurers to pass on some of the cost of riot-related claims to the police will apply, with the government ready to make up any funding shortfall.
 
"The government will ensure the police have the funds they need to meet the cost of any legitimate claims," Cameron said in parliament, adding that the deadline for filing claims would be extended to 42 days from 14.
 
Under the Riots (Damages) Act, uninsured businesses and households, as well as insurers facing riot-related claims from their customers, can seek partial compensation from the police.
 
Cameron, who has already authorised police to use baton rounds and water cannon where necessary, said he would explore curbs on the use of social media tools if these were being used to plot "violence, disorder and criminality".
 
Public fury over looting

Many Britons were appalled at the scenes on their streets, from the televised mugging of an injured Malaysian teenager to a Polish woman photographed leaping from a burning building, as well as the looting of anything from baby clothes to TV sets.
 
But occupying the moral high ground is tricky in a country where some lawmakers and policemen have been embroiled in expenses and bribery scandals, and top bankers take huge bonuses even as the taxpayer bails out financial institutions.
 
The unrest flared first in north London after police shot dead a black man. That disturbance then mutated into widespread looting and violence.
 
British leaders are concerned the rioting could damage confidence in the economy and in London, one of the world's biggest financial centres and venue for next year's Olympics.
 
The prime minister said criminal street gangs were at the heart of the violence. "Territorial, hierarchical and incredibly violent, they are mostly composed of young boys, mainly from dysfunctional homes," he added.
 
Arguing that police, local government and voluntary workers needed to work together to stop inner-city street gangs, as they had in American cities such as Boston, he said: "I want this to be a national priority."

YES YOU READ THAT FIRST PART RIGHT THE COPS WERE THERE BUT COULDN'T SAVE THE GUY FROM BEING BEAT TO DEATH! THEY RAN AWAY, LEAVING HIM THERE TO FIGHT ON HIS OWN! shocked shocked shocked[/b][/u]

 http://tvnz.co.nz/world-news/fourth-death-uk-riots-4349121

                                          P.C.
« Last Edit: August 13, 2011, 10:50:55 AM by prentice crawford » Logged

DougMacG
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« Reply #32 on: August 13, 2011, 10:46:45 AM »

"The majority of posters here seem to be of the die-hard republican variety..."
  - taken as a compliment. wink I know the policy here is that thoughtful opposing views are always welcome, seeking the truth, and yours is certainly a thoughtful and informative post.

"...those of us who live outside of the US as generally we are ignored or looked down upon."
  - I hope not!  We get bogged down in US politics but the global reach of the forum is certainly a strength.  

"...US have too relaxed firearms legislation."
  - It's that darn constitution.  Besides protection, the firearm is symbolic of keeping our other rights unless given back freely and legally through the constitutional process.  I don't own any guns.  I also think the strong views here about gun rights come from the martial arts / self defense orientation of the forum as much as from the political leanings.  The desirability of having an armed society is a separate question from the specific 'right' in the U.S.

"Gardiner...right wing and a throwback to the Thatcher years"
  - To me, a compliment for him, though I get the distinction that quoting Gardner from the Telegraph is a counter-indicator of UK mainstream political thought.

Speaking only for myself, the headlines of this unrest reminds me of other problems elsewhere, the car fires of Villiers-le-Bel (Paris) and riots in Rosengard (Malmo Sweden) but that does not mean there are similarities.  As you point out we are learning about the participants and motivations of these in the UK.

I have not posted on this because I don't know anything yet, (except for one post in satire that Libya is recognizing the rioters as the official government of the UK.  No offense intended!)  My personal right wing view is that young people in general would riot less and destroy less if they were busy studying, working and responsible for providing for themselves.
---------------
Topic for another thread and I may be reading this wrong, but why would people be pro-war in Libya but anti-war elsewhere like in Iraq?
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G M
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« Reply #33 on: August 13, 2011, 10:50:31 AM »

Consider that Obama has good press over here, the only dent being how long it took him to commit initially to Lybia (and people here understand why he wouldn't want to commit his country to another war).

You guys fond of how he has disrespected the UK and worked to undercut the special relationship? I'm sure the queen was enraptured by his teleprompter readings..... rolleyes
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prentice crawford
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« Reply #34 on: August 13, 2011, 10:52:41 AM »

Woof,
 And the return of Churchill's bust, HOWEVER I think we are getting off topic and focus for this thread on the martial arts forum and need to take some of this to the political thread.
                             P.C.
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JDN
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« Reply #35 on: August 13, 2011, 11:05:19 AM »

Not that it matters a whole lot in our coming election, but Obama is quite popular in Europe.

http://articles.latimes.com/2011/jun/26/opinion/la-oe-mcmanus-obama-europe-20110626
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G M
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« Reply #36 on: August 13, 2011, 11:12:09 AM »

Not that it matters a whole lot in our coming election, but Obama is quite popular in Europe.

http://articles.latimes.com/2011/jun/26/opinion/la-oe-mcmanus-obama-europe-20110626

Of course, military weakness and financial collapse are very european.
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DougMacG
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« Reply #37 on: August 13, 2011, 11:32:41 AM »

"The way I read this statue, a neighborhood kid could come on to your property at night, steal your bicycle (theft during the nighttime)  and you could shoot him in the back as he pedaled (fleeing away) away to stop him from escaping with your property."

I don't know if the Texas law is being properly interpreted in the example but people reading that in other states should know you would face possible murder charges elsewhere in that situation.  The self defense laws of the 50 states were linked recently by Crafty.  Recovering the property by other means might include following him home in your car and call the police, if you had time to get your gun and shoot him. 

My view is that entering your premises day or night is more than a property crime.  An intruder with that kind of nerve can be presumed to be dangerous.

It is purely hypothetical anyway because if that it is the right of the homeowner to shoot the burglar, no one is likely to take the bike. 

The question posed is how to deal with property protection if guns/knives etc are not an option.  The hated camera surveillance after the fact seems to be one of the key tools. 
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prentice crawford
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« Reply #38 on: August 13, 2011, 11:53:00 AM »

Woof,
 I don't think JDN is interested in laws that protect property owners and deters crimes, he's more into making sure rioters can do as much damage as possible so that afterward the government can use it as an excuse to crackdown on the populace at large and introduce more government control and curb the individual rights and freedoms of the law abiding majority, making them even more dependant on the government for protection that the government can't provide. tongue The British citizenry have allowed themselves to be disarmed on the false premise that it would make them safe but what they've done is made themselves defenseless against both criminals and the ineptness of government.
                                                        P.C.
« Last Edit: August 13, 2011, 12:05:07 PM by prentice crawford » Logged

Bambi
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« Reply #39 on: August 13, 2011, 12:15:57 PM »


Woof Point Dog,
 I'm sure the 4 dead so far will be eternally grateful for that. tongue

4 dead, from only two incidents, In L.A that would probably be called a weekend rather than a riot cheesy  No reports of looters using firearms either, so swings and roundabouts. There was a guy shot and killed in london but apparently not related to the disorder.

Incidentally, the reports that I read about the 68 year old was that there was one police officer present who couldnt come to his aid until reinforcements came, not that multiple officers were beaten back.

If you want to learn anything from these riots it's that unlike any of the UKs previous riots they were mostly motivated by profit rather than protest and that the disorder spread very quickly beyond the epicentre through the use of social media. 


Quote
Of course, military weakness and financial collapse are very european.


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JDN
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« Reply #40 on: August 13, 2011, 12:24:52 PM »


Woof Point Dog,
 I'm sure the 4 dead so far will be eternally grateful for that. tongue

4 dead, from only two incidents, In L.A that would probably be called a weekend rather than a riot cheesy  No reports of looters using firearms either, so swings and roundabouts. There was a guy shot and killed in london but apparently not related to the disorder.


 grin grin grin
4 Dead in L.A. this week?  That IS a good week.  The average is 3 dead EVERYDAY with firearms.
http://www.ph.ucla.edu/sciprc/pdf/FIREARMS.pdf
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G M
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« Reply #41 on: August 13, 2011, 12:43:54 PM »


Woof Point Dog,
 I'm sure the 4 dead so far will be eternally grateful for that. tongue

4 dead, from only two incidents, In L.A that would probably be called a weekend rather than a riot cheesy  No reports of looters using firearms either, so swings and roundabouts. There was a guy shot and killed in london but apparently not related to the disorder.


 grin grin grin
4 Dead in L.A. this week?  That IS a good week.  The average is 3 dead EVERYDAY with firearms.
http://www.ph.ucla.edu/sciprc/pdf/FIREARMS.pdf

The vast majority being members of what NPR likes to call "The gang community". What is known in police circles as "public service homicide". Felon A whacks Felon B, and the circle of life completes it's self.

How's those "knife crimes" working out in the UK?
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G M
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« Reply #42 on: August 13, 2011, 12:52:01 PM »

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk/crime/article1626691.ece

April 8, 2007

 

UK is knife crime capital
 



Will Iredale and Cordelia O'Neill


Another teenage schoolboy was stabbed to death this weekend as Britain was named as one of the knife crime blackspots of the developed world.
 
Paul Erhahon, a 14-year-old from Leytonstone, east London, was killed in a fight involving 12 to 15 youths on Good Friday. He is the sixth teenager to die in a knife attack within the last month.
 
The tragedy occurred as a new study of 28 countries found 13% of violent crime victims in England and Wales had been stabbed or threatened with a knife. Scotland came close behind. Only Spain and Portugal had worse figures, while countries such as Italy, the United States, Estonia and Mexico all had less knife crime.
 
About 2,000 people aged 16 and over in each of 28 countries in Europe, North America, Australia and New Zealand were asked about their experience of violent crime over the past five years in the study by John van Kesteren, a law professor at Tilburg University in Holland.
 


Related Links
 

Pupils sent to school in body armour







Erhahon was stabbed along with his friend Steven Mafolabomi, 15, who is now in a serious condition in hospital. Both boys managed to stagger a short distance from a block of flats where the attack happened before collapsing in the street. Police have arrested two youths, aged 13 and 19.
 
Detectives, who are appealing for witnesses, say they are keeping an open mind about the motive for Erhahon’s killing. But local residents said the area was plagued by teenage gangs. Erhahon apparently attended the same school as Adam Regis, 15 — a nephew of former Olympic athlete John Regis — who was stabbed in east London last month. Police were not connecting the incidents.
 
Leytonstone residents said Erhahon, who lived with his parents and two younger sisters near the scene of the attack and had ambitions to be a rap musician, had been stabbed once before, a few months previously.
 
A friend of Erhahon said he was part of “the youngers” — the name for youngsters in the area — but emphasised that this was not a gang.
 
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #43 on: August 13, 2011, 03:19:46 PM »

Glad to see Point Dog contributing to the conversation.
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JDN
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« Reply #44 on: August 13, 2011, 03:34:53 PM »


How's those "knife crimes" working out in the UK?

Knife crimes in the UK are working out a lot better than America's gun crimes!    The homicide rate in America, the majority due to firearms, is simply staggering.

Did you read the link I posted from UCLA?  3+ die EVERY DAY in LA due to firearms.  Not wounded, not cut, but DIE.

Overall, the homicide rate is 5 times worse in America than England.  More so probably in Los Angeles and other large metropolitan areas.

http://fleshisgrass.wordpress.com/2007/04/17/us-and-uk-murder-rate-and-weapon/

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JDN
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« Reply #45 on: August 13, 2011, 03:37:09 PM »

Glad to see Point Dog contributing to the conversation.

It is great to hear a different perspective.  Point Dog, I hope you contribute more often.
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G M
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« Reply #46 on: August 13, 2011, 04:48:49 PM »


http://reason.com/archives/2002/11/01/gun-controls-twisted-outcome/singlepage

Gun Control's Twisted Outcome

Restricting firearms has helped make England more crime-ridden than the U.S.

Joyce Lee Malcolm from the November 2002 issue


 



On a June evening two years ago, Dan Rather made many stiff British upper lips quiver by reporting that England had a crime problem and that, apart from murder, "theirs is worse than ours." The response was swift and sharp. "Have a Nice Daydream," The Mirror, a London daily, shot back, reporting: "Britain reacted with fury and disbelief last night to claims by American newsmen that crime and violence are worse here than in the US." But sandwiched between the article's battery of official denials -- "totally misleading," "a huge over-simplification," "astounding and outrageous" -- and a compilation of lurid crimes from "the wild west culture on the other side of the Atlantic where every other car is carrying a gun," The Mirror conceded that the CBS anchorman was correct. Except for murder and rape, it admitted, "Britain has overtaken the US for all major crimes."
 
In the two years since Dan Rather was so roundly rebuked, violence in England has gotten markedly worse. Over the course of a few days in the summer of 2001, gun-toting men burst into an English court and freed two defendants; a shooting outside a London nightclub left five women and three men wounded; and two men were machine-gunned to death in a residential neighborhood of north London. And on New Year's Day this year a 19-year-old girl walking on a main street in east London was shot in the head by a thief who wanted her mobile phone. London police are now looking to New York City police for advice.
 
None of this was supposed to happen in the country whose stringent gun laws and 1997 ban on handguns have been hailed as the "gold standard" of gun control. For the better part of a century, British governments have pursued a strategy for domestic safety that a 1992 Economist article characterized as requiring "a restraint on personal liberty that seems, in most civilised countries, essential to the happiness of others," a policy the magazine found at odds with "America's Vigilante Values." The safety of English people has been staked on the thesis that fewer private guns means less crime. The government believes that any weapons in the hands of men and women, however law-abiding, pose a danger, and that disarming them lessens the chance that criminals will get or use weapons.
 
The results -- the toughest firearm restrictions of any democracy -- are credited by the world's gun control advocates with producing a low rate of violent crime. U.S. Supreme Court Justice Lewis Powell reflected this conventional wisdom when, in a 1988 speech to the American Bar Association, he attributed England's low rates of violent crime to the fact that "private ownership of guns is strictly controlled."
 
In reality, the English approach has not re-duced violent crime. Instead it has left law-abiding citizens at the mercy of criminals who are confident that their victims have neither the means nor the legal right to resist them. Imitating this model would be a public safety disaster for the United States.
 

The illusion that the English government had protected its citizens by disarming them seemed credible because few realized the country had an astonishingly low level of armed crime even before guns were restricted. A government study for the years 1890-92, for example, found only three handgun homicides, an average of one a year, in a population of 30 million. In 1904 there were only four armed robberies in London, then the largest city in the world. A hundred years and many gun laws later, the BBC reported that England's firearms restrictions "seem to have had little impact in the criminal underworld." Guns are virtually outlawed, and, as the old slogan predicted, only outlaws have guns. Worse, they are increasingly ready to use them.
 
Nearly five centuries of growing civility ended in 1954. Violent crime has been climbing ever since. Last December, London's Evening Standard reported that armed crime, with banned handguns the weapon of choice, was "rocketing." In the two years following the 1997 handgun ban, the use of handguns in crime rose by 40 percent, and the upward trend has continued. From April to November 2001, the number of people robbed at gunpoint in London rose 53 percent.
 
Gun crime is just part of an increasingly lawless environment. From 1991 to 1995, crimes against the person in England's inner cities increased 91 percent. And in the four years from 1997 to 2001, the rate of violent crime more than doubled. Your chances of being mugged in London are now six times greater than in New York. England's rates of assault, robbery, and burglary are far higher than America's, and 53 percent of English burglaries occur while occupants are at home, compared with 13 percent in the U.S., where burglars admit to fearing armed homeowners more than the police. In a United Nations study of crime in 18 developed nations published in July, England and Wales led the Western world's crime league, with nearly 55 crimes per 100 people.

This sea change in English crime followed a sea change in government policies. Gun regulations have been part of a more general disarmament based on the proposition that people don't need to protect themselves because society will protect them. It also will protect their neighbors: Police advise those who witness a crime to "walk on by" and let the professionals handle it.
 
This is a reversal of centuries of common law that not only permitted but expected individuals to defend themselves, their families, and their neighbors when other help was not available. It was a legal tradition passed on to Americans. Personal security was ranked first among an individual's rights by William Blackstone, the great 18th-century exponent of the common law. It was a right, he argued, that no government could take away, since no government could protect the individual in his moment of need. A century later Blackstone's illustrious successor, A.V. Dicey, cautioned, "discourage self-help and loyal subjects become the slaves of ruffians."

But modern English governments have put public order ahead of the individual's right to personal safety. First the government clamped down on private possession of guns; then it forbade people to carry any article that might be used for self-defense; finally, the vigor of that self-defense was to be judged by what, in hindsight, seemed "reasonable in the circumstances."
 
The 1920 Firearms Act was the first serious British restriction on guns. Although crime was low in England in 1920, the government feared massive labor disruption and a Bolshevik revolution. In the circumstances, permitting the people to remain armed must have seemed an unnecessary risk. And so the new policy of disarming the public began. The Firearms Act required a would-be gun owner to obtain a certificate from the local chief of police, who was charged with determining whether the applicant had a good reason for possessing a weapon and was fit to do so. All very sensible. Parliament was assured that the intention was to keep weapons out of the hands of criminals and other dangerous persons. Yet from the start the law's enforcement was far more restrictive, and Home Office instructions to police -- classified until 1989 -- periodically narrowed the criteria.
 
At first police were instructed that it would be a good reason to have a revolver if a person "lives in a solitary house, where protection against thieves and burglars is essential, or has been exposed to definite threats to life on account of his performance of some public duty." By 1937 police were to discourage applications to possess firearms for house or personal protection. In 1964 they were told "it should hardly ever be necessary to anyone to possess a firearm for the protection of his house or person" and that "this principle should hold good even in the case of banks and firms who desire to protect valuables or large quantities of money."
 
In 1969 police were informed "it should never be necessary for anyone to possess a firearm for the protection of his house or person." These changes were made without public knowledge or debate. Their enforcement has consumed hundreds of thousands of police hours. Finally, in 1997 handguns were banned. Proposed exemptions for handicapped shooters and the British Olympic team were rejected.
 
Even more sweeping was the 1953 Prevention of Crime Act, which made it illegal to carry in a public place any article "made, adapted, or intended" for an offensive purpose "without lawful authority or excuse." Carrying something to protect yourself was branded antisocial. Any item carried for possible defense automatically became an offensive weapon. Police were given extensive power to stop and search everyone. Individuals found with offensive items were guilty until proven innocent.
 
During the debate over the Prevention of Crime Act in the House of Commons, a member from Northern Ireland told his colleagues of a woman employed by Parliament who had to cross a lonely heath on her route home and had armed herself with a knitting needle. A month earlier, she had driven off a youth who tried to snatch her handbag by jabbing him "on a tender part of his body." Was it to be an offense to carry a knitting needle? The attorney general assured the M.P. that the woman might be found to have a reasonable excuse but added that the public should be discouraged "from going about with offensive weapons in their pockets; it is the duty of society to protect them."
 
Another M.P. pointed out that while "society ought to undertake the defense of its members, nevertheless one has to remember that there are many places where society cannot get, or cannot get there in time. On those occasions a man has to defend himself and those whom he is escorting. It is not very much consolation that society will come forward a great deal later, pick up the bits, and punish the violent offender."
 
In the House of Lords, Lord Saltoun argued: "The object of a weapon was to assist weakness to cope with strength and it is this ability that the bill was framed to destroy. I do not think any government has the right, though they may very well have the power, to deprive people for whom they are responsible of the right to defend themselves." But he added: "Unless there is not only a right but also a fundamental willingness amongst the people to defend themselves, no police force, however large, can do it."
 
That willingness was further undermined by a broad revision of criminal law in 1967 that altered the legal standard for self-defense. Now everything turns on what seems to be "reasonable" force against an assailant, considered after the fact. As Glanville Williams notes in his Textbook of Criminal Law, that requirement is "now stated in such mitigated terms as to cast doubt on whether it [self-defense] still forms part of the law."
 
The original common law standard was similar to what still prevails in the U.S. Americans are free to carry articles for their protection, and in 33 states law-abiding citizens may carry concealed guns. Americans may defend themselves with deadly force if they believe that an attacker is about to kill or seriously injure them, or to prevent a violent crime. Our courts are mindful that, as Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes observed, "detached reflection cannot be demanded in the presence of an upraised knife."
 
But English courts have interpreted the 1953 act strictly and zealously. Among articles found illegally carried with offensive intentions are a sandbag, a pickaxe handle, a stone, and a drum of pepper. "Any article is capable of being an offensive weapon," concede the authors of Smith and Hogan Criminal Law, a popular legal text, although they add that if the article is unlikely to cause an injury the onus of proving intent to do so would be "very heavy."
 
The 1967 act has not been helpful to those obliged to defend themselves either. Granville Williams points out: "For some reason that is not clear, the courts occasionally seem to regard the scandal of the killing of a robber as of greater moment than the safety of the robber's victim in respect of his person and property."
 
A sampling of cases illustrates the impact of these measures:
 
� In 1973 a young man running on a road at night was stopped by the police and found to be carrying a length of steel, a cycle chain, and a metal clock weight. He explained that a gang of youths had been after him. At his hearing it was found he had been threatened and had previously notified the police. The justices agreed he had a valid reason to carry the weapons. Indeed, 16 days later he was attacked and beaten so badly he was hospitalized. But the prosecutor appealed the ruling, and the appellate judges insisted that carrying a weapon must be related to an imminent and immediate threat. They sent the case back to the lower court with directions to convict.
 
� In 1987 two men assaulted Eric Butler, a 56-year-old British Petroleum executive, in a London subway car, trying to strangle him and smashing his head against the door. No one came to his aid. He later testified, "My air supply was being cut off, my eyes became blurred, and I feared for my life." In desperation he unsheathed an ornamental sword blade in his walking stick and slashed at one of his attackers, stabbing the man in the stomach. The assailants were charged with wounding. Butler was tried and convicted of carrying an offensive weapon.
 
� In 1994 an English homeowner, armed with a toy gun, managed to detain two burglars who had broken into his house while he called the police. When the officers arrived, they arrested the homeowner for using an imitation gun to threaten or intimidate. In a similar incident the following year, when an elderly woman fired a toy cap pistol to drive off a group of youths who were threatening her, she was arrested for putting someone in fear. Now the police are pressing Parliament to make imitation guns illegal.
 
� In 1999 Tony Martin, a 55-year-old Norfolk farmer living alone in a shabby farmhouse, awakened to the sound of breaking glass as two burglars, both with long criminal records, burst into his home. He had been robbed six times before, and his village, like 70 percent of rural English communities, had no police presence. He sneaked downstairs with a shotgun and shot at the intruders. Martin received life in prison for killing one burglar, 10 years for wounding the second, and a year for having an unregistered shotgun. The wounded burglar, having served 18 months of a three-year sentence, is now free and has been granted �5,000 of legal assistance to sue Martin.
 
The failure of English policy to produce a safer society is clear, but what of British jibes about "America's vigilante values" and our much higher murder rate?
 
Historically, America has had a high homicide rate and England a low one. In a comparison of New York and London over a 200-year period, during most of which both populations had unrestricted access to firearms, historian Eric Monkkonen found New York's homicide rate consistently about five times London's. Monkkonen pointed out that even without guns, "the United States would still be out of step, just as it has been for two hundred years."
 
Legal historian Richard Maxwell Brown has argued that Americans have more homicides because English law insists an individual should retreat when attacked, whereas Americans believe they have the right to stand their ground and kill in self-defense. Americans do have more latitude to protect themselves, in keeping with traditional common law standards, but that would have had less significance before England's more restrictive policy was established in 1967.
 
The murder rates of the U.S. and U.K. are also affected by differences in the way each counts homicides. The FBI asks police to list every homicide as murder, even if the case isn't subsequently prosecuted or proceeds on a lesser charge, making the U.S. numbers as high as possible. By contrast, the English police "massage down" the homicide statistics, tracking each case through the courts and removing it if it is reduced to a lesser charge or determined to be an accident or self-defense, making the English numbers as low as possible.
 
The London-based Office of Health Economics, after a careful international study, found that while "one reason often given for the high numbers of murders and manslaughters in the United States is the easy availability of firearms...the strong correlation with racial and socio-economic variables suggests that the underlying determinants of the homicide rate are related to particular cultural factors."
 
Cultural differences and more-permissive legal standards notwithstanding, the English rate of violent crime has been soaring since 1991. Over the same period, America's has been falling dramatically. In 1999 The Boston Globe reported that the American murder rate, which had fluctuated by about 20 percent between 1974 and 1991, was "in startling free-fall." We have had nine consecutive years of sharply declining violent crime. As a result the English and American murder rates are converging. In 1981 the American rate was 8.7 times the English rate, in 1995 it was 5.7 times the English rate, and the latest study puts it at 3.5 times.
 
Preliminary figures for the U.S. this year show an increase, although of less than 1 percent, in the overall number of violent crimes, with homicide increases in certain cities, which criminologists attribute to gang violence, the poor economy, and the release from prison of many offenders. Yet Americans still enjoy a substantially lower rate of violent crime than England, without the "restraint on personal liberty" English governments have seen as necessary. Rather than permit individuals more scope to defend themselves, Prime Minister Tony Blair's government plans to combat crime by extending those "restraints on personal liberty": removing the prohibition against double jeopardy so people can be tried twice for the same crime, making hearsay evidence admissible in court, and letting jurors know of a suspect's previous crimes.
 
This is a cautionary tale. America's founders, like their English forebears, regarded personal security as first of the three primary rights of mankind. That was the main reason for including a right for individuals to be armed in the U.S. Constitution. Not everyone needs to avail himself or herself of that right. It is a dangerous right. But leaving personal protection to the police is also dangerous.
 
The English government has effectively abolished the right of Englishmen, confirmed in their 1689 Bill of Rights, to "have arms for their defence," insisting upon a monopoly of force it can succeed in imposing only on law-abiding citizens. It has come perilously close to depriving its people of the ability to protect themselves at all, and the result is a more, not less, dangerous society. Despite the English tendency to decry America's "vigilante values," English policy makers would do well to consider a return to these crucial common law values, which stood them so well in the past.
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G M
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« Reply #47 on: August 13, 2011, 05:10:22 PM »



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2ElT-TkoQT4&feature=player_embedded
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JDN
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« Reply #48 on: August 13, 2011, 05:24:27 PM »

You must be kidding?   huh

You take a ten year old article, saying violent crime, i.e. muggings and robberies are possibly higher in the UK and compare that the homicides in America?  That's like comparing apples and oranges.

Let me repeat in case you missed the statistics.  On a per capita basis, there were three times more homicides, that's deaths, not muggings, or robberies,
in the USA versus UK.  Most of the homicides in America were committed with a gun.  And I bet in America's large cities, if you want to focus and compare London to America's large cities, NY, Chicago, LA, Miami, Detroit, etc. the number of homicides per capita is even worse in America, again, mostly committed with a gun. 

No one likes to be mugged and have their wallet taken.  Or robbed and have their jewels or TV stolen, but homicide means you are dead.  There is a difference,
like an apple and an orange are different.   grin
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G M
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« Reply #49 on: August 13, 2011, 05:29:28 PM »

Read the Reason article.
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