Banned – Never produces the intended result

Banned. Prohibited. Forbidden.

However you want to phrase it, the banning of anything never produces the intended result.

Prohibition of Alcohol in the USA

Take the Prohibition years in the USA. From 1920 to 1933 the sale of alcoholic beverages was banned under the Eighteenth Amendment to the Constitution of the USA. The intention was that alcoholic drinks were bad, so if the sales, importation and transportation of alcoholic beverages was banned the people would be saved from themselves by the ‘Dry Crusaders’.

As with all bans, it only works if people are prepared to stick to the law. The Eighteenth Amendment overnight, created an illicit market in booze and hence provided a lucrative funding stream for organised crime.

Prohibition of the ownership of Pistols in Great Britain

Perhaps the only prohibition that has affected me here in the UK, was the knee-jerk reactionary laws put into place around firearms. In particular, pistols.

Had 1997 not been a general election year, then perhaps things may have turned out differently, but following the Dunblane Shootings, the private ownership of pistols in Great Brtain was banned. In excess of 100,000 of the most law-abiding members of society (they had to be in order to qualify for Firearms Certificates from their local Chief Constables) were scapegoated for the crimes of one man. They had their pistols, ammunition and ancillary equipment confiscated by the state.

As one party proposed a measure, another would propose a harsher measure in order to win votes in the upcoming general election.

Now notice I said the ban was put into place in Great Britain rather than the UK? That is England, Scotland and Wales. The area of the UK, Northern Ireland where most firearms crime occurred escaped the pistol ban. If banning pistols in Northern Ireland would not work because the terrorists would not stick to the law, why would anyone expect it to work in Great Britain.

As a result of the ban in Great Britain, firearms crime increased according to the Home Office figures. The direct opposite of what was intended. Why? Those pesky criminals you know just will not stick to the law.

So the next time you hear somone calling for something to be banned, you may just want to pipe up and ask them to explain exactly how they think that ban will turn out.

To my readers in the USA I say this. Treasure the Second Amendment. Without it you lose the First, then very quickly all others.


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