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The NZ government has made some sweeping changes to our gun laws of late.
We are told that these changes are for our own good and will increase the safety of our society.
Just this week alone there have been two shootings involving police and violent offenders, a significant upturn in such crimes.
So those new laws are working well then eh?
Okay, I admit that the dataset is too small to draw any real conclusions but what I have noticed is that despite semi-auto firearms having been illegal for quite some time now, virtually all of the police raids on gangs have netted a cache of such guns.
How can this be?
Do the gangs and drug dealers not know that it is now illegal to possess such weapons?
How can it be that although every law-abiding gun owner in the country has handed in their semi-autos, the criminals do not seem to be as eager or as compliant?
What foolish politician thought that making such firearms illegal would result in criminals handing them over?
The reality is that new laws only affect the behaviour of those who obey the laws and those people are not the problem. The criminal element, by definition, choose to ignore laws and thus remain unaffected.
What we're now seeing is the result of very bad and ill-considered law changes surrounding firearms.
The ban on semi-auto guns came as a direct result of the Christchurch Mosque incident. The proposition seems to be that it was the fault of gun owners that this tragedy happened so they must be punished and deprived of their sport and recreational pastime.
I'm sorry but that's a huge deception and fraud.
The reason the Christchurch incident occured was through no fault of the huge numbers of recreational shooters who held semi-auto guns. It was because the police failed in their obligations to properly vet anyone who applies for a firearms license. Had they done their job properly and according to the very clear procedures laid out for them, the guy responsible for the attrocity would never have been given a gun license and would not have been able to obtain his weapons with such ease.
Nobody within the ranks of the police force seems to have been censured for this failure -- but every single law-abiding owner of a semi-automatic rifle has been, despite their complete innocense and non-involvement with the events of that day.
So how has this ban worked out?
Well obviously it hasn't done a damned thing.
Violence involving firearms seems to have increased rather than decreased, semi-autos are still in the hands of criminals and I dare say they continue to flood into the country via illicit channels, due to the fact that they now command much higher prices on the black market.
This situation really defines the poor state of law-making in this country and the lack of accountability within the halls of power -- where the *real* problems lie.
Will we learn from this?
Of course not. The goal appears not to be the actual attribution of blame to the right quarters and the solving of problems -- rather it seems to be to excuse failings on the part of those at fault and to penalise the innocent in a way that makes it appear as if the right thing is being done.
The biggest tragedy of all is that most of the dim-witted public fall for this crap every time it happens.
And yes... drones are next. Not because they're dangerous (the death toll associated with the recreational use of multirotor drones remains a big fat ZERO, world wide, across the entire history of the hobby). However, as I predicted, Google has now announced its intention to roll out "traffic management services for drones" which will allow them to (eventually) clip the ticket on every flight that takes place.
The ever-tightening regulatory noose around the neck of this hobby has nothing to do with safety and everything to do with lining certain pockets. However, as in the case of the gun-ban, the public will be told that it's for their own safety; and they will swallow this line of BS hook, line and sinker :-(
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