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ChristopherM

Why does the debate about arming all officers always compare us to the Americans?

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ChristopherM
Posted (edited)

Why does the debate about arming all officers always compare us to the Americans? Surely a better comparison would be with New Zealand, whose officers are all trained in firearms but don't routinely carry. Or Australia or the Netherlands where officers are routinely armed but they don't have the gun crime or police shootings like in the USA?

Edited by ChristopherM

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Ether
55 minutes ago, ChristopherM said:

Why does the debate about arming all officers always compare us to the Americans? Surely a better comparison would be with New Zealand, whose officers are all trained in firearms but don't routinely carry. Or Australia or the Netherlands where officers are routinely armed but they don't have the gun crime or police shootings like in the USA?

The notion of having a firearm but having it locked away for when you may need it is like not getting a vaccination till after you are sick.

Most dynamic situations don’t allow time to go get a gun. 
 

The better comparison is Australia or most European countries, where officers are armed on duty. But the reality is you don’t actually need to look outside our own Kingdom, Northern Ireland proves it can be done

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Billy Blue Tac
1 hour ago, ChristopherM said:

Why does the debate about arming all officers always compare us to the Americans? Surely a better comparison would be with New Zealand, whose officers are all trained in firearms but don't routinely carry. Or Australia or the Netherlands where officers are routinely armed but they don't have the gun crime or police shootings like in the USA?

Maybe it's because America's law enforcement and gun culture have a higher profile than elsewhere (due to a seemingly endless supply of movies, TV cop shows, Youtube clips and MSM reporting) making it easier for folks to relate to.

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Radman

The reality is we are globally the exception to the norm, the US is just one EXTREME example that people default to. This should be brought up whenever a politician or senior officer (yes I have heard senior officers compare routine arming to the US) decides to Stoke public outrage/opinion. 

That's not to say what the US does is entirely wrong, I do think there are things the US gets right over us such as the locally appointed, accountable and controlled Police Departments which mirrors something we had in place prior to 1970s when forces were merged in Counties and became accountable to Central Government - realistically I think local authorities should have put up more of a fight back then to retain some control as we are now reaping what was sowed with that decision some 50 years later... Breakdown in Neighbourhood style policing with vast number of low level yet impactful offences going largely ignored in favour of central government targets. 

 

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BlueBob

What I'd really like to compare then, is not only the carrying but also how their usage is managed, with the perception being that in some areas almost any usage is justified and minimal impact on the officer/s and yet the reverse seems to be the situation in the UK.  Perhaps carrying is just part of the equation.

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Ether
4 minutes ago, BlueBob said:

What I'd really like to compare then, is not only the carrying but also how their usage is managed, with the perception being that in some areas almost any usage is justified and minimal impact on the officer/s and yet the reverse seems to be the situation in the UK.  Perhaps carrying is just part of the equation.

Different areas of the UK are not different, the use of force and rules of engagement are the same.

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Radman
3 hours ago, BlueBob said:

What I'd really like to compare then, is not only the carrying but also how their usage is managed, with the perception being that in some areas almost any usage is justified and minimal impact on the officer/s and yet the reverse seems to be the situation in the UK.  Perhaps carrying is just part of the equation.

You can't be doing that because you'd be enforcing the idea of ghettos and policing areas where routine carry of firearms is more required in some locations than others which we know is the case but I can almost see the newspaper headlines now along with the froth foaming at the mouths of Liberty International Activists. 

It would have to be across the board. 

There is also a Libertarian issue in regards to the state having the monopoly of power which isn't necessarily a great thing, especially when said goverment decides to curtail individual rights and freedoms. 

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BlueBob
11 hours ago, Ether said:

Different areas of the UK are not different, the use of force and rules of engagement are the same.

I meant different areas as in uK, EU, uS, etc etc rather than within the Uk

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stewie_griffin

It's much easier to dismiss the argument that police officers in the UK should be armed, if you compare the situation to that in the US.

You can say, 'Look at how many people the American Police shoot! If police in the UK were armed, the same thing would happen. Because guns.'

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ChristopherM
Author of the topic Posted
13 hours ago, stewie_griffin said:

It's much easier to dismiss the argument that police officers in the UK should be armed, if you compare the situation to that in the US.

You can say, 'Look at how many people the American Police shoot! If police in the UK were armed, the same thing would happen. Because guns.'

Exactly, people need to look at Europe.

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Ether

Look at places like Sweden, Iceland, Norway, Germany all arm their police without murdering droves of its citizens. 
 

Or look internally at NI

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Zulu 22
39 minutes ago, Ether said:

Look at places like Sweden, Iceland, Norway, Germany all arm their police without murdering droves of its citizens. 
 

Or look internally at NI

Surely you are not trying to compare Northern Ireland as the situation there is completely different. There the IRA still exist in various factions and they would not hesitate in assassinating any Police Officer. 

 

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Ether
36 minutes ago, Zulu 22 said:

Surely you are not trying to compare Northern Ireland as the situation there is completely different. There the IRA still exist in various factions and they would not hesitate in assassinating any Police Officer. 

 

I made no comparison on the risk, just the process or being armed, which PSNI proves can/does work. 

However, looking at the stats on injury rates for officers, I think it it easily justifies it. I wear a seatbelt every time I fly, not once has it been any use, but one day I may need it, so I wear it. 

Until that attitude changes that officers are just expected to face danger woefully under armed and out skilled, and it’s some how ok for them to get injured or even risk it, we will have the same discussions. 

Why is it ok for the police to face such danger in the work place when in any other occupation H&S wouldn’t allow it? We don’t shoot enough people in all honesty.

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Zulu 22
2 hours ago, Ether said:

I made no comparison on the risk, just the process or being armed, which PSNI proves can/does work. 

However, looking at the stats on injury rates for officers, I think it it easily justifies it. I wear a seatbelt every time I fly, not once has it been any use, but one day I may need it, so I wear it. 

Until that attitude changes that officers are just expected to face danger woefully under armed and out skilled, and it’s some how ok for them to get injured or even risk it, we will have the same discussions. 

Why is it ok for the police to face such danger in the work place when in any other occupation H&S wouldn’t allow it? We don’t shoot enough people in all honesty.

Sorry but that comment, " We don’t shoot enough people in all honesty". is completely out of order and insults your colleagues. Do not apply to be an AFO.  Northern Ireland is a completely different situation as there  are still terrorists there who are armed and would not have a second thought in shooting them.  In my Federation days I was at St Georges, Harrogate and there was a lady there from the PSNI. She was talking about the "Shoot to Kill" policy. She said that there was a Shoot to Kill policy and it was the policy of the IRA. She went on to say "The IRA shot my man in his back one day when he was retuning from work. They shot him in the back and killed him as he put the key ion the front door. The process of the PSNI being armed is an absolute necessity. 

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stewie_griffin
1 hour ago, Zulu 22 said:

Sorry but that comment, " We don’t shoot enough people in all honesty". is completely out of order and insults your colleagues. 

Perhaps, but I think what he's trying to say is that the only reason more suspects are not shot is because you don't have guns. In any other jurisdiction where police are armed, similar actions (for example charging at a police officer with a knife) would get you shot.

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