The Corner

British Police: Buy a Gun and Give Up Your Privacy Rights

Per Fox News:

Registered gun owners in the United Kingdom are now subject to unannounced visits to their homes under new guidance that allows police to inspect firearms storage without a warrant.

The new policy from the British Home Office went into effect Oct. 15, permitting police and constabularies to conduct surprise home visits to legitimate gun owners.

“Americans should view the UK’s ever-expanding gun control efforts with grave concern,” the National Rifle Association’s lobbying arm said on its website Friday.

Britain’s gun owners were subject to the home visits before the update, but the inspection had to be conducted with prior notice.

“Where it is judged necessary, based on specific intelligence in light of a particular threat, or risk of harm, the police may undertake an unannounced home visit to check the security of a certificate holder’s firearms and shotguns,” the updated policy says.

In other words, if you wish you wish to exercise your right to keep and bear arms you must give up your right to privacy. Or, to put this into an American context, if you wish to enjoy the Second Amendment, you are required to forfeit the Fourth. 

In and of itself, this is flatly unacceptable. Nevertheless, there are different ways in which rights can be violated, and this change makes a bad situation much, much worse. Beforehand, British citizens were given a warning. Now? Cops can come into their homes at any time and demand to inspect their firearms. One can only imagine what the British liberals who remade the modern world would have thought had they seen a writ of general warrant being issued, applicable to anybody who had elected to exercise their right to self-defense.

The police claim that the latitude is necessary to prevent “terrorism,” naturally. The British gun lobby, such as it is, suggests that this ridiculous:

The group said the Home Offices own figures show that theft of guns is not a widespread concern.

“On average, in the past five years, annually just 0.025 percent of the 1,837,243 legally held firearms and shotguns in England and Wales were stolen — an average of just 475 guns per year,” Shooting UK said. Those figures were not broken down to indicate how many firearms were stolen from a legal gun owner’s home.

All handguns are banned in Britain. There are a couple of million rifles and shotguns left in circulation.



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