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Anorak | After London: Should we be like Texas and arm the police?

After London: Should we be like Texas and arm the police?

by | 5th, June 2017

Should London be more like Texas? One writer makes the comparison:

In the heart of the nation’s capital, at near-maximum terror alert, with the densest national concentration of armed officers, the attackers had 8-10 minutes to rampage unimpeded before the armed police turned up and whacked them in short order.

Contrast this with the May 2015 attack in Garland, TX where the heavily armed gunmen just made it out of their car, managed to slightly wound a security officer, and then promptly expired in a hail of bullets. I can’t help but notice the complete lack of follow-on terror attacks in Texas since then; presumably word has got around the terror community that it’s a poor choice of location. (Glasgow is probably number 2 on the do-not-terrorise list after the terrifyingly vicious response of the residents.).

I can’t help but think that the complete dis-arming of the UK civilian population is not working out quite as well as most of its proponents expected.

What of Dallas, 2016?

These are grim and sobering times for the US. On back-to-back days last week, two videos emerged showing police officers shooting black men – Alton Sterling in Louisiana and Philando Castile in Minnesota – apparently without provocation. A day later, Micah Johnson, a black former soldier, gunned down police at a demonstration in Dallas, killing five officers. During the standoff with police, Johnson said he was upset about the police shootings, and ‘wanted to kill white people, especially white officers’.

In 2016, Scotland Yard announced plans to increase the number of armed police in the capital by 600, bringing the total to almost 3,000.

What do the police think?

The poll, by the Metropolitan Police Federation, reveals that 75% of officers surveyed feel all Metropolitan Police officers should be issued with Taser whilst on duty.

Just under 11,000 Met Police officers responded to the survey on Taser and Firearms, which ran for three weeks in January.

As well as indicating that more officers should carry a Taser, the results show that only 6% of officers feel there are currently an “adequate” amount of gun carrying officers in the capital.

The force is currently increasing the number of Authorised Firearms Officers in London.

Results also show that the largest number of respondents – 43.6% – believe there “should be more specialist firearms officers in the Metropolitan Police Service but not all officers should be routinely armed.”

Other results in the survey show:

• 57% of officers who responded said they would be prepared to carry a gun if the Commissioner and the Home Secretary made a decision that all MPS officers should routinely carry a firearm whilst on duty.

• A little over one in four respondents (26%) said that they believe all police officers should be routinely armed.

• 12% of officers surveyed said under no circumstances would they carry a firearm whilst on duty.

• 8.2% of respondents said they would resign from the MPS rather than accept an order to routinely carry a firearm whilst on duty. 86.5% said they would not.

Good idea or not?



Posted: 5th, June 2017 | In: News Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink