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Is it time the UK police were generally armed

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Is it time the UK police were generally armed

Old 19th Aug 2017, 10:48
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Is it time the UK police were generally armed

The rise of terror attacks
Vans / car strikes. Stabbings.
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Old 19th Aug 2017, 10:53
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Good idea. Speeding motorists (who cause more deaths than all the causes you list put together) could be shot on sight. Even better, why not just arm the speed cameras?
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Old 19th Aug 2017, 11:01
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No, it's not.
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Old 19th Aug 2017, 11:09
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Warlingham sounds an awful place
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Old 19th Aug 2017, 11:28
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Originally Posted by ZFT View Post
Warlingham sounds an awful place
You stole the print from my keyboard! I'll avoid that area in future.

Particularly since a large proportion of the police have indicated that they would resign rather than carry firearms, so Warlingham will be full of crims going about their jobs with impunity.
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Old 19th Aug 2017, 11:32
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The recent terrorist events where police have been conveniently nearby is hardly reflective of the majority of Britain.
Maybe it is because I live in Northumberland (where there are more sheep than people), but police are very thin on the ground here.
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Old 19th Aug 2017, 11:54
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The general arming of police is an absolute non starter. It could be done overnight if necessary, but the training that all armed officers have to undergo would need to be abandoned. Then there are the protracted enquiries that take place whenever police are forced to shoot someone.

The vast majority of officers would be prepared to carry and use a firearm if specific circumstances dictated it was necessary, but most officers would resign rather than carry a firearm as part of daily routine.

Carrying a gun (as opposed to a taser) puts a whole new dynamic on police/public interactions. No one is allowed to approach closely in case they make a grab for your weapon. So you are effectively walking around in a six foot bubble where anyone stepping inside that line is regarded as a potential threat. That is no way to run a consensual police service (since they abandoned being forces).

Then we have accidental discharges of weapons, blue on blue shootings, innocent bystanders getting in the way of bullets...

Arming the police is just playing into the terrorists hands and increasing the public perception that they need to be fearful of random attacks.

Carrying a gun doesn't make you feel more in control of a situation, you spend most of the time worrying about how much paperwork and sh1t you will be in if you ever draw and fire it.

As for the psychological factors, if are prepared to carry a lethal weapon, then you do so in the full knowledge that if you a forced to use it, your training dictates that you will in all likelyhood take someone's life. Probably one of the reasons that many if not most authorised firearms officers are ex-military.
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Old 19th Aug 2017, 12:10
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No. We are a long way from being there. I think tasers are sufficient for most violent miscreants who are not actually toting a firearm themselves.
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Old 19th Aug 2017, 12:24
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According a firearms officer I was talking to, he spends a large amount of time training and retraining. Not so much about how to pull the trigger but how to conduct himself around its use.
If all the police were armed we'd need to recruit many more officers to fill in the gaps on the street due to the training.
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Old 19th Aug 2017, 13:18
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Despite any 'hype' Britain is an amazingly safe country.

The answer to "Is it time the UK police were generally armed?" is 'NO'.
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Old 19th Aug 2017, 14:27
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[quote=G0ULI;9866443] there are the protracted enquiries that take place whenever police are forced to shoot someone. [quote]

Well that could be changed too.

carrying a gun (as opposed to a taser) puts a whole new dynamic on police/public interactions. No one is allowed to approach closely in case they make a grab for your weapon.
You can grab a taser as easily as a gun, both are weapons. Continental police do not enforce security bubbles. Typically armed police patrol in pairs. It would be a complete idiot that tried to grab a weapon from one with the other armed and providing cover.

Arming the police is just playing into the terrorists hands and increasing the public perception that they need to be fearful of random attacks.
That train left the station years ago. People don't 'see' the armed police at air ports, embassies etc as other than a reaction to terrorism.

Carrying a gun doesn't make you feel more in control of a situation, you spend most of the time worrying about how much paperwork and sh1t you will be in if you ever draw and fire it.
May be on paper work, but I bet you feel less in control when taking cover while unarmed, or risk standing in to danger to protect civilians.

if you a forced to use it, your training dictates that you will in all likelyhood take someone's life. Probably one of the reasons that many if not most authorised firearms officers are ex-military.
Is that a fact or supposition? Use of a taser has created a shed load of paperwork and occasionally taken a life too. Does the man in the street feel differently when confronted with a taser rather than a gun? I suspect the gun gains greater respect.
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Old 19th Aug 2017, 14:34
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I've spent most of my life living in Countries where the Police are armed routinely and it hasn't changed the way I interact with them in the slightest.

I dont interact with armed UK officers in any different way to the non-armed ones so I dont see why they shouldn't be all armed. If the recent attack in Spain had happened in the UK then good luck finding an armed officer in Brighton who could immediately stop the terrorists. The last 2 rampages in the London were only stopped when armed officers finally arrived on the scene after unarmed officers failed to stop the terrorist attacks.

So should the UK Police be armed? - damn right they should, they are there to protect the Public and at the moment are not fully able to do that.
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Old 19th Aug 2017, 14:44
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Originally Posted by Jet II View Post
So should the UK Police be armed? - damn right they should, they are there to protect the Public and at the moment are not fully able to do that.
And if they choose not to be armed, as many of them do?
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Old 19th Aug 2017, 14:48
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Originally Posted by Pontius Navigator View Post
Continental police do not enforce security bubbles. Typically armed police patrol in pairs.
I can just see doubling our police manpower going down well with the beancounters (currently it's only the Specials who aren't allowed out on their own, and they don't cost very much).
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Old 19th Aug 2017, 14:54
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GTW, true that in many areas such as Lincolnshire we see lone police driving about. But in the cities and towns, if we see them, we see them in pairs. At one time, in Lincoln, near the football ground the police outnumbered the pub drinkers by 2-1 with about 15 police.

Certainly in Spain police have a far higher profile. In France, visiting Eurodisney, we saw the Eurostar station was patrolled by armed French Marines. Where there is a will . . .
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Old 19th Aug 2017, 15:12
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Originally Posted by Sallyann1234 View Post
And if they choose not to be armed, as many of them do?
The purpose of the Police is to defend the Public and enforce the Law - not to suit themselves.
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Old 19th Aug 2017, 15:13
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Originally Posted by Pontius Navigator View Post
But in the cities and towns, if we see them, we see them in pairs.
In this city (which you might prefer to call a town, but you've covered both) I've spent shifts with the police and whether there's one or two of them simply depends on what they're doing. If it doesn't need two people they don't send two people, they're not that wasteful of our cash.
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Old 19th Aug 2017, 15:37
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The purpose of the Police is to defend the Public and enforce the Law - not to suit themselves.
And if they believe that they can better defend the public without carrying a gun?
Not a fan of gun fetishes, to be honest.
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Old 19th Aug 2017, 15:38
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Originally Posted by Nemrytter View Post
And if they believe that they can better defend the public without carrying a gun?
Not a fan of gun fetishes, to be honest.
hows that working out so far?
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Old 19th Aug 2017, 15:41
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The risk of violent crime that requires an instant firearms solution in Britain is so extremely low that there is no need to increase danger by increasing the number of firearms on the streets. (Nem and I are in full agreement on this one.)
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