1.The fastest way to lose your Firearm or Shotgun Certificate is to threaten someone with a gun. The police really, really don't like that. Quite right too. There are plenty of things wrong with our firearms legislation in the UK, but on the plus side, it does ensure that legitimate firearms are in the hands of law-abiding, sober, sensible people who aren't prone to robbing banks or turning violent at the drop of a hat.
2.The second fastest way to lose your guns is to let the police think you've threatened someone with a gun. That (in my humble opinion) is where Kevin Hunter went wrong. A dog walker complained when Kevin told them to clear off private land. Police got the impression he'd used his gun in a threatening manner (listening to Kevin I don't think he did) and hey presto, guns gone.
3.Now there's a third way. Become a victim of violence or threatened violence, and the police will kindly relieve you of your guns so you won't be tempted to use them in self defence. That's what happened to Tracy St Clair Pearce, when some... er, what's the PC term for pikeys nowadays? Let's call them 'travellers'... when some travellers threatened to cut her throat, exposed themselves to her, threw rocks, etc. Did she grab her shotgun? No, she told them to clear off, and called the cops. Who took 35 minutes to show up, then treated her as the criminal. And a couple of days later they barge into her house at 3.15 in the morning demanding the keys to her gun cabinet or they'll rip it off the wall.
Perhaps there's more to this story than meets the eye, but the way it's being reported, it's not doing the police any favours. Minority Report seems just around the corner.
I don't advocate the licensing of firearms for self defence. Some people do, and they're entitled to their opinion; to me it sounds a bit too Wild West. But there's a covenant between the state and the citizen. We agree to give up our right to defend ourselves with lethal force, on the understanding that the state will protect us. In the case of Miss St Claire Pearce, the police not only failed miserably, they're now trying to justify their actions with a stream of PC twaddle.
The Mud in the Blood blog has some strong words on the subject, and I'm sure some of my American readers will be flabbergasted too.
Whatever your views, it's worth remembering what we have become, if you want to keep your certificates.