Here in the United Kingdom we supposedly live in a democracy, but far too often this system is under mined by those that would suppress or remove the “rights” of the populace. At present politicians are debating the removal of organisations right to lobby government. This system is a tried and tested way for small groups, as well as large groups, to get their voice heard on a subject matter that is the heart of their organisation.
For example, the gay rights movement spent many years campaigning and lobbying in all areas to make its case heard. Under the proposed new rules their voice would have been silenced. In addition, the proposals go further, organisations would not be allowed to take part in any political events or make what could be discerned as political statements, 12 months prior to any national election. This is the point when these groups do their best to remind you just what was promised last time and how much of what they said they would do they have actually done.
One slightly bizarre thing has emerged from this, in the un-intended consequences category, old enemies have, and are agreeing to put their differences aside, and work together on this one issue. Once again the adage “my enemies, enemy, is my friend” finds a home with the un-likeliest of partners. You will be hard pressed to find a group that is not calling a truce for the duration on this issue.
So where did this removal of an accepted right emerge from, some dictatorship in a far off land, well no, dictatorships do exactly what they say, so this would be part of the normal running of any dictatorship. What you have here is a group, elected by the people, trying to suppress that same electorate in order to proceed with its own agenda. This masterful piece of thinking has its roots in the United States of America. The administration, in an effort to stop certain groups, was prepared to remove the rights of all its citizens with the exception of one group. To be able to comment during any election period all you needed was a media outlet, a newspaper, radio station or T.V. network for example. Now given that the mass media in the U.S. is predominantly supportive of the Democratic Party, this left any group that was opposed to or un-supportive of their ideals, pretty much without a voice.
There was however one group that that was not going to take this abuse of power lying down. So with much haste, the National Rifle Association cobbled together an ad hoc radio and T.V. station, much to the chagrin of the incumbent administration. It would appear that no such loophole will exist in the current bill being put forward, as only the current media, with a history in the field will be permitted.
To borrow from part 1, “Here in the United Kingdom we supposedly live in a democracy...” but there is a group of politically motivated, un-elected, by the populace, or from within their own organisation, individuals who are working tirelessly to remove the rights of the individual and groups. This organisation is the Police, or more precisely, the Association of Chief Police Officers, here after called ACPO.
This autonomist group of un-elected individuals have, over the last 20-30 years, gone from a group liaising with politicians and informing them of how the police are managing the civil population, to an organisation making policy recommendations, amendments to laws and making new laws, were they feel the current legislation is lacking. Or, put another way, a lobbying group, ACPO will also be exempt from the current proposals should they become law.
ACPO is currently in the process of debating the current “occupier” definition applied to land where people shoot. They are contemplating proposing that for an individual to be an occupier that person should either own the land or rent the land, with official, legally binding contracts. In short you either buy the land or lease it and register that leasing with the land registry office. Apart from the paper work involved, the cost to the average shooter would be prohibitive. This is just one of many areas that ACPO has set itself up as the law maker regarding firearms ownership, laws and shooting.
I am not so naive as to expect that there should be no governance of firearms, but ACPO and their political allies in this matter have slowly and systematically eroded the system in their efforts to make it almost impossible for someone to enter the sport now, and with every subtle amendment to the guidelines a little more gets eaten away.
The police should do the job for which they were created, the upholding of the law of the land, and leave the creation of those laws to the duly elected officials. After all, the elected individuals can be removed every four years or so if the masses deem it necessary, these self appointed individuals are there until they decide to leave.