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Smith & Wesson Holding Corporation Message Board

  • jerome_kervier jerome_kervier Dec 28, 2012 7:58 AM Flag

    USA JAPAN comparison

    In Japan guns are really, really hard to get in Japan.
    As a result, not many people are killed with guns in Japan.
    In 2008, Max Fisher of the Atlantic reports, about 12,000 Americans were killed with guns.
    How many do you think were killed in Japan that year?
    (Yes, that's 11. Not 11,000. 11.)

    And as Fisher points out, 11 gun deaths made 2008 a bad gun-death year in Japan. In 2006, 2 people were killed with guns.

    Fisher also explains what you have to do to get a gun in Japan:

    Japanese tourists who fire off a few rounds at the Royal Hawaiian Shooting Club would be breaking three separate laws back in Japan -- one for holding a handgun, one for possessing unlicensed bullets, and another violation for firing them -- the first of which alone is punishable by one to ten years in jail. Handguns are forbidden absolutely. Small-caliber rifles have been illegal to buy, sell, or transfer since 1971. Anyone who owned a rifle before then is allowed to keep it, but their heirs are required to turn it over to the police once the owner dies.

    The only guns that Japanese citizens can legally buy and use are shotguns and air rifles, and it's not easy to do. The process is detailed in David Kopel's landmark study on Japanese gun control, published in the 1993 Asia Pacific Law Review, still cited as current. (Kopel, no left-wing loony, is a member of the National Rifle Association and once wrote in National Review that looser gun control laws could have stopped Adolf Hitler.)

    To get a gun in Japan, first, you have to attend an all-day class and pass a written test, which are held only once per month. You also must take and pass a shooting range class. Then, head over to a hospital for a mental test and drug test (Japan is unusual in that potential gun owners must affirmatively prove their mental fitness), which you'll file with the police. Finally, pass a rigorous background check for any criminal record or association with criminal or extremist groups, and you will be the proud new owner of your shotgun or air rifle. Just don't forget to provide police with documentation on the specific location of the gun in your home, as well as the ammo, both of which must be locked and stored separately. And remember to have the police inspect the gun once per year and to re-take the class and exam every three years.

    Even the most basic framework of Japan's approach to gun ownership is almost the polar opposite of America's. U.S. gun law begins with the second amendment's affirmation of the "right of the people to keep and bear arms" and narrows it down from there. Japanese law, however, starts with the 1958 act stating that "No person shall possess a firearm or firearms or a sword or swords," later adding a few exceptions. In other words, American law is designed to enshrine access to guns, while Japan starts with the premise of forbidding it.

    Gun control is a complex subject in America, especially with such wide-ranging population-densities, cultures, and so forth. And I certainly don't think there's one "right" answer to how we can reduce the armed-psycho-blows-away-innocent-people problem.

    But judging from Japan, maybe tighter gun-control laws would help, at least a bit.


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    • Japan knew invasion was the best move after Pearl Harbor and did not because "There is a gun behind every blade of grass." They were afraid of our well armed citizenery.

    • Maybe you should move to Japan? Which of the two do you think is more likely to happen in the U.S.? People giving up their guns or you moving???? Japan has no official army, navy or air-force. These structures were banned after WWII and never reconstituted. U.S. troops are based in Japan in exchange for promises of protection. .. We pay to protect Japan!

    • Aug. 8 (Bloomberg) -- Japan had the highest number of murders, armed robberies and other violent crimes during the first six months of this year since it began keeping such data in 1989, the Nihon Keizai newspaper said, citing a police report. The rate of arrests fell to their lowest level ever, it said.

      A total of 11,304 such crimes were reported during the period. That's an increase of 17 percent from the same period the year before, the newspaper said. The rate of arrests fell below 50 percent for the first time to 49 percent.

      The number of robberies rose 25 percent to 3,919, while cases of homicide increased 12 percent to 735, the report said. There was also a 10 percent increase in reported rape cases. The number of murders and arsons committed by juveniles increased 87 percent to 131, according to the newspaper.

      A total of 945 elementary school students became victims of sex crimes, up 46 percent. The number of cases involving all types of crimes fell 0.9 percent to 12,574, the first such decline on a half-year basis in eight years, the report said.

    • Perhaps you should consider moving to Japan if your so worried about guns. How about showing some stats for the Swiss? Hummmmmm?

    • delta1200 Dec 28, 2012 8:43 AM Flag

      Its like comparing apples to oranges...... different cultures... American want to use someone elses game plan to straighten out are society..... why dont we just win with the team we have.. educated are kids and teach them to be productive citizens... i think we have gotten to be lazy and fat, hell we wont even spank are own kids cause it might cause behavioral problems.. i bought a gun this year just to have one without having one for fiffteen years went shooting with my girl freind and daughter last week, educating someone on using a gun for the right reasons takes time.... TAKE THE TIME!!!

      Sentiment: Buy

    • The Japanese culture itself is completely different. Show me major cities like Detroit, Chicago, East St. Louis, south central L.A., Flint, or West Memphis in Japan where a vast majority of criminal activity is generational?

      Also show me how many minorities are in their culture and are openly hostile to the Japanese and their history? How many African-Japanese or Hispanic-Japanese are there? I think the Japanese are just Japanese, they are fairly assimilated and united in their nationalism. They are like ants, you knock their ant hill over with a nuke or tsunami and they get a little pissy, but soon they are back to working together in unison to fix it.

      In the United States in situations like katrina, we have whole subsections that loot, riot and steal. Many others, already on the government dole, are just then wasting space needing the government to clothe, feed, shelter and relocate them and have no intentions of working together, or even working at all, to help their fellow American. So comparing us to #$%$ is appo's and olanges...

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