Monday, September 16, 2013

Do Gun Bans Reduce Violent Crime? Ask the Aussies!

Australia banned guns, didn't fix crime.

From the Australian Bureau of Criminology - 2010

Actually, if the Australian Bureau of Criminology can be believed, Americans would be insane to concern themselves with what non-Americans think about American gun rights.

In 2002 — five years after enacting its gun ban — the Australian Bureau of Criminology acknowledged there is no correlation between gun control and the use of firearms in violent crime. In fact, the percent of murders committed with a firearm was the highest it had ever been in 2006 (16.3 percent).

Even Australia’s Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research acknowledges that the gun ban had no significant impact on the amount of gun-involved crime:

In 2006, assault rose 49.2 percent and robbery 6.2 percent.

Sexual assault — Australia’s equivalent term for rape — increased 29.9 percent.

Overall, Australia’s violent crime rate rose 42.2 percent.

Moreover, Australia and the United States — where no gun-ban exists — both experienced similar decreases in murder rates:

Between 1995 and 2007, Australia saw a 31.9 percent decrease; without a gun ban, America’s rate dropped 31.7 percent.
During the same time period, all other violent crime indices increased in Australia: assault rose 49.2 percent and robbery 6.2 percent.

Sexual assault — Australia’s equivalent term for rape — increased 29.9 percent.

Overall, Australia’s violent crime rate rose 42.2 percent.
At the same time, U.S. violent crime decreased 31.8 percent: rape dropped 19.2 percent; robbery decreased 33.2 percent; aggravated assault dropped 32.2 percent.

Australian women are now raped over three times as often as American women.

So, if the USA follows Australia’s lead in banning guns, it should expect a 42 percent increase in violent crime, a higher percentage of murders committed with a gun, and three times more rape.

The International Crime Victims Survey, conducted by Leiden University in Holland, found that England and Wales ranked second overall in violent crime among industrialized nations. Twenty-six percent of English citizens — roughly one-quarter of the population — have been victimized by violent crime. Australia led the list with more than 30 percent of its population victimized. The United States didn’t even make the “top 10″ list of industrialized nations whose citizens were victimized by crime.

Here is a break down of control in Australia:

Firearms categories

Firearms in Australia are grouped into Categories with different levels of control. The categories are:

Category A: Rimfire rifles (not semi-automatic), shotguns (not pump-action or semi-automatic), air rifles, and paintball markers. A "Genuine Reason" must be provided for a Category A firearm.

Category B: Centrefire rifles (not semi-automatic), muzzleloading firearms made after 1 January 1901. Apart of "Genuine Reason" a "Genuine Need" must be demonstrated, including why a Category A firearm would not be suitable.

Category C: Semi-automatic rimfire rifles holding 10 or fewer rounds and pump-action or semi-automatic shotguns holding 5 or fewer rounds. Category C firearms are strongly restricted: only primary producers, occupational shooters, collectors and some clay target shooters can own functional Category C firearms.

Category D: Semi-automatic centrefire rifles, pump-action or semi-automatic shotguns holding more than 5 rounds. Functional Category D firearms are restricted to government agencies and a few occupational shooters. Collectors may own deactivated Category D firearms.

Category H: Handguns including air pistols and deactivated handguns. This class is available to target shooters. To be eligible for a Category H firearm, a target shooter must serve a probationary period of six months using club handguns, and a minimum number of matches yearly to retain each category of handgun.

Target shooters are limited to handguns of .38 or 9mm calibre or less and magazines may hold a maximum of 10 rounds. Participants in certain "approved" pistol competitions may acquire handguns up to .45", currently Single Action Shooting and Metallic Silhouette. IPSC shooting is approved for 9mm/.38/.357 handguns that meet the IPSC rules, but larger calibers are not approved for IPSC handgun shooting contests. Category H barrels must be at least 100mm (3.94") long for revolvers, and 120mm (4.72") for semi-automatic pistols unless the pistols are clearly ISSF target pistols: magazines are restricted to 10 rounds. Handguns held as part of a collection were exempted from these limits.

Category R/E: Restricted weapons: machine guns, rocket launchers, assault rifles, flame-throwers, anti-tank guns, Howitzers, artillery, etc. can be owned by collectors in some states provided that these weapons have been rendered permanently inoperable. They are subject to the same storage and licensing requirements as fully functioning firearms.

Certain Antique firearms can in some states be legally held without licences. In other states they are subject to the same requirements as modern firearms.

All single-shot muzzleloading firearms manufactured before 1 January 1901 are considered antique firearms. Four states require licences for antique percussion revolvers and cartridge repeating firearms, but in Queensland and Victoria a person may possess such a firearm without a licence, so long as the firearm is registered (percussion revolvers require a license in Victoria).

Australia has very tight restrictions on items which are far less controlled in comparable societies such as the UK. Air pistols, elsewhere unrestricted, are as difficult to get as centrefire and rimfire handguns, and low-powered airguns are as difficult as cartridge arms to license. Airsoft guns are banned in all states and non-firing replicas banned in most. Suppressors (or 'silencers') which are legal in the UK and New Zealand, are extremely restricted in Australia to a few government bodies.


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