Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Rise in public support for police to carry firearms

New Zealanders have changed their minds about an unarmed police force. More than half of those in a new survey want the police to carry firearms. Just five years ago a majority were still opposed to the idea. Only 33 per cent supported it. Now 53 per cent would approve. The survey of 500 people by Research New Zealand has also revealed that 44 per cent of the public are more concerned about their personal safety than they were last year.

A report out last year that I discussed on Radio NZ showed that it was those who lived in poverty who were the major victims of crime, but it was the fears of the middle classes who didn’t experience crime that actually drove crime policy and here we see the effects of constant fear mongering of crime by the media – EVEN THOUGH OUR CRIME RATE IS ACTUALLY GOING DOWN. We must not arm police, it is a philosophy and way of being towards each other that must be preserved, we are NZers, we don’t immediately reach for a gun to sort outr our issues, I fell out with a large chunk of the activist community over my position on the Urewera 17, not because I thought they were terrorists, but because as activists you have no justification to pick up and train with guns – I am equally passionate that we don’t allow our Police to roam armed to the teeth – guns are not a solution, they only make the killing of other human beings quicker and easier.

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