I recently wrote to my MSP regarding the Cabinet Secretary for Justice's views on Firearm Control in Scotland. The Scottish Government are presently attempting to have the law regarding firearms in Scotland to be devolved with a view to "ensuring that the law is better able to protect Scottish Communities". I have noted that the Cabinet Secretary has looked at the number of FAC holders in Scotland (25,831 at the end of 2011) and the number of firearms held (71,860) and has made it known that he would consider a cap on the number of firearms held by individual FAC holders.
The Cabinet Secretary (Kenny Macaskill) has replied to my letter confirming his concern over the number of firearms held but concedes that "any potential cap would need to be researched thoroughly to determine the reasons licence holders might require a large number of guns". He states that he understands that various weapons may be required for different disciplines of sports shooting and for effective control of animals dependant on the situation.
His primary concern is for "public safety" .
I have immediately replied stating that all FAC/SGC holders are law abiding persons whose backgrounds have been thoroughly checked/vetted by Police Authorities and that in all but the rarest of cases are certificate holders a threat to Scottish Communities/public safety. I have strongly suggested that the Government, Courts, Legislators and Police should be addressing their efforts at the criminal possession and use of firearms and that in no way will tightening the legisation on law abiding citizens address the likes of recent horrific happenings in Greater Manchester.
I am never sure whether writing to MSPs, MPs make any difference. The shooting organisations hopefully will be part of the discussions and this is where being part of the likes of BASC and ensuring that they do not just go "yes sir" may make a difference.