Commissioner Elżbieta Bieńkowska ( European Commission ) claimed 100.000 deaths in ten years by legally-held firearms and said law abiding citizens should not own semi-automatic firearms at all.
Snippets of Commissioner’s speech:
- I think that first we have to limit the access to automatic and semi-automatic firearms.
- Such assault weapons are not necessary for sport shooting.
- Hunters in some member states are not concerned at all by our proposal.
- We have evidence from the last year that during the last decade 100.000 people in Europe were killed by such weapons. Homicide … they were… murdered by using weapons which were at home.
- Our proposal does not endager sport shooters, really not.
- Kalashnikovs are military arms. Even when they are semi-automatic or non-automatic at all I am convinced such firearms should not be authorized for sports.
- To many people were killed, so be more open-minded on this topic.
Commissioner invents „facts“ and ignores real facts
- invents additional 34.000 homicides in the last 10 years
(there were only 66.000 homicides, not 100.000, in total)
- ignores that in more than 97% other means have been used
(less than annual 150 homicides were committed with legally-held firearms)
- ignores the fact that homicide rates dropped by 30% during the last decade
(from 8000 to 5000 homicides in total, from 1100 to 650 with all firearms, from apx. 150 to 90 with legally-held firearms per year).
- urges for banning semi-automatic rifles which have not been misused for crime at all (most of the homicides committed with legally-held firearms belong to categories, which won’t be affected by proposal)
- misuses massacres to ban firearms which have not been used in massacres
(nearly none of the misused firearms will be affected by proposal).
European Commission should be more open-minded, since
- there is no correlation between legal access to firearms and suicide rates, then there is no justification in quoting suicide rates in arguments for restricted access to firearms (see chapter 5.2.);
- if state control is praised as solution, even when this has not had any impact during the last 800 years, as against social and culture change (see chapter 6.4, 6.5 and 7.2),
- firearms-related homicides rates are misused to justify access restrictions, since there is no correlation between legal firearm access and homicide rates (see chapter 7.1);
- the “Evaluation of the Firearms Directive” to promote the proposed changes, misuses individual “episodes” of crime or terrorism to generalise a mistrust of more than 16 million law-abiding citizens, especially when it is admitted therein that there are important gaps in the statistics (see chapter 8.1).
- EC presents incorrect data (see chapter 8.2);
Read more in our Report on Homicide and Suicide
In 2012 more than 5000 people have been murdered, apx. 90 with legally-held firearms = 1,8%
Between 2000 and 2012 almost 3 million people lost their lives by external causes in Europe (see chapter 2). Less than 2,4% were firearms-related suicides (see chapter 5). Less than 0,5% (12.076) were firearms-related homicides (see chapter 7). Both rates decreased by more than 30% in the last decade. Professor Eisner researches in homicides (see chapter 6.5.) and said:
The similiarity in the variation of homicide rates suggests that we significantly overestimates the importance of national-level forces such as national welfare and criminal justice policies
Same is valid for laws with stricter access to and bans for legally-held firearms.
MEPs reject the whole directive
Snippets of MEP Richard SULÍK’s speech
- No terrorist is going to get a weapon at a normal dealer.
- Ms Bieńkowska suprised me yesterday, when she said, that we don’t need so many weapons. Surely citizen’s freedom should be more important than the Commission’s opinion.
- The ladies and gentlemen sitting in the Commission seem to be acting like gods.
- I would be happiest if the whole directive were to be withdrawn.
Snippets of MEP Jussi HALLA-AHO’s speech:
- We should reject not only the proposed and unjustified ban on semi-automatic sporting rifles that are subcategorized A6 and A7, but also the proposed recategorisation of legal firearms as a whole.
- We also should reject the nearly total ban of category A firearms which would lead to destruction of valuable historical collections. These weapons are not used in crime and are already strictly controlled.
- We should reject mandatory time limits for licenses and medical checks because they only lead to more bureaucrazy and inconveniece without impact on crime.
- All above has been rejected by LIBE.
- I support to reject the whole proposal as it violates all principles of good regulation.
- The Commission tried to took advantage of the tragic event in Paris last November to push through a largely ideological anti-firearm proposal.
This has greatly damaged the image and credibility of the EU.
Snippets of MEP Christofer FJELLNER’s speech:
- Instead of getting to the real problem with illegal guns all of the proposal hits the legal guns and has no impact on terrorists or criminals at all.
- 5-years-licenses, medical exams, hindering distance trade and banning certain semi-automatics won’t stop terrorists but hit hard the law abiding gunowners
- How many crimes could be linked to legally-held firearms? How big is the problem?
- How many firearms were affected by the ban? How many will be banned?
- If Commission cannot answer these both simple question, we should reject proposal.
- You missed the target (illicit trafficking) by miles!
The topic has been debated on Tue, 24 May 2016 11:30 – 12:30: 15.0 (IMCO/8/05094) Control of the acquisition and possession of weapons
You can watch the complete meeting of 24th May with the following link
Very interesting is also the point that Vicky Ford and her Committee found lots of mistakes in the guideline for deactivated firearms which became law in December 2015. They will amend it for praxis. This is very interesting as Commission made also an intensive study and talked to experts and published the study in July 2014, but was not able to make a guideline which actually works.
You may download our commented version of this EU study on deactivation, marking and alarm guns here: PDF