PM John Howard’s recent comments on gun control are a blessing – something you will hardly ever hear me say about his utterances.
That is, if he follows through. He has no specific initiatives planned yet.
Ahead of the 10th anniversary of the Port Arthur massacre, he said that nobody should have firearms unless it was an essential part of their job.
Hallelujah. And yah sucks boo to Americans. There are not many nations that glorify guns like they do. Thank goodness. They have twisted a revolutionary situation two hundred years old, to make themselves one of the dangerous nations in the world in which to live. I would just hate to think that there is a gun in every second house in Sydney, waiting to be used. There’s not. There are guns in Sydney, but not in epidemic proportions, and fewer now with the compulsory buybacks of recent years. The above article details a study which shows a dramatic reduction in murders, suicides, and accidental shootings – specifically since the buybacks. On that basis, our gun deaths are 1.7 per 100,000. What’s yours, America? (and no, other means don’t substitute if guns are absent. Homicides, suicides actually go down - as the study illustrates.)
You don’t need guns to defend yourself in Australia. There are some around, but thank goodness we’re not infested.
Postscript: I recently saw a noir-ish film called Suddenly. Frank Sinatra plays a mobster – and he’s a natural! Just about worth seeing for that alone. But it’s got some really redneck attitudes on guns, eg every kid ought to have one, get used to handling guns. Freaky, but they were serious. It's a sad world, where some Americans feels safer with guns.
27-Jun-06: A recent "quality of life" survey rated US cities lower than those of Australasia, Canada and Europe, specifically because of crime and personal security issues.