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Thread: Firearms Legislation Scotland

  1. #1

    Firearms Legislation Scotland

    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.

  2. #2
    The problem with politics is that they only think of votes and keeping themselfs in a job. Any contact with these people will count but I dont know by how much. The problem is the antis in the back ground manipulating and making sure that we are the target of the policys. Gazza contacting them is better than doing nothing and good job sir. I dont see there being a problem with the amount of guns you have if you can justify having them, I think in our area we are not alowed calibers to close together like having a 22/250 and 223 etc and that cuts down the amount of guns we have anyway. Cheers Hootsman
    Just Shoot The F..king Thing!

  3. #3
    Agreed. I thought that you already have to have a good reason for each and every slot on your FAC. I know of many guys who have been refused a slot on the grounds that they already have a rifle suited for the purposes they are requesting a new one for, i.e. .223 for fox control when the FAC holder already owned a .17hmr for the same purpose.

    On another note, good on the OP for making the effort to write to MPs and express his concern over issue which effect us all.

  4. #4

    Multiple credit to you for - writing in the first place, homing in on a defined 'issue', responding to correspondence and sharing on here.

    MPs and MSPs I talk with admit they may or may not really heed a letter, a cogent reply does get noticed ( if initial correspondence gets a response from a department or minister always copy to your MSP/MP. Two letter on a subject causes a double take and three or more letters starts them believing this is an issue to which they should pay attention.

    Bulk loads of clearly proforma letters are counter productive.

    Another 'win' is if the correspondence focuses on a particular issue rather than generalisation, is polite and carries some evidence supporting a particular stance.

    Good job
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  5. #5
    I received my response from Mr MacAskill yesterday, with exactly the same content as you described within his response. I found it positive that it was a considered response and I too will reply to his letter. I have also had responses from my local MEP and MP from Westminster, both with similar considered responses and noting their appreciation and support of the lawful use of firearms. My letters were specific and highlighted my concerns over both the potential cap on number of firearms per person and the current process of granting licenses to applicants.

    In all responses, statements were made that there were currently no plans in place to review either the vetting process or the number of firearms per certificate holder, and that if powers were devolved then any modifications to the process or capping would be based on thorough research.

    Reading between the lines however, I felt that a cap to numbers of firearms held, whilst being thoroughly researched and having some sort of dispensation to some, may be inevitable if only to placate the public non-FAC or SGC majority that things are being done to preserve and maintain public safety, however pointless that exercise may actually be.

    I believe that writing can have a benefit, if not only to feel as though we are doing something rather than sit back and do nothing. In the event that potentially unfavorable changes are made, at least you can think 'well at least I tried...'

  6. #6
    I got a reply from a letter from Mike watson around 1999 / 2000 when I was a gamekeeper in which he stated he did not want to completely ban hunting animals with dogs only when it was done for sport. He stated he was happy for hounds to be run through forestry and other areas to help control the fox numbers.

    What a lying **** he turned out to be!

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