We all know very well how dire is the situation for law abiding gun owners and gun enthusiasts in the United Kingdom; despite the Common Law entitling British citizens with the right to keep and bear arms, gun laws were sistematically tightened from the mid-1960s onwards (and even before that, in the 1920s).
In 1988 and 1997, with two sweeping "Firearms (Amendment) Acts", the private ownership of centerfire semiautomatic firearms and handguns was banned for basically every average citizens (so-called "Collector's" licenses, "Èlite" firearms licenses and PPWs are extremely rare!).
Despite a recent slight increase of licenses entitling some individuals to own handguns for purposes such as humane animal killing, these bans de facto disarmed a nation − previous owners of those firearms had to turn them in for destruction in exchange of a merely symbolic check − and killed a wide array of popular, inclusive, and legitimate sports, including rimfire pistol shooting, an Olympic discipline.
Needless to say, the bans − enacted after two tragic but nonetheless isolated shootings, at Hungerford and Dunblane − did nothing to improve public safety in the United Kingdom, which today enjoys the dubious honor of being the first Country in the European Union by violent crimes.
Nonetheless, the British public opinion is mostly anti-gun, due to decades of brainwashing by the gun grabbing front, and the world of shooting sport enthusiasts is split: some of them don't oppose restrictions, in order not to be targeted by the next wave of (possibly final) bans and confiscations, or not to loose their perceived "privileged" status.
We may have said it often in the past, but this is a concept that's never rehearsed too often: no matter how some categories of gun owners may feel "safe", they are not. No civilian gun ownership, as restricted as it could be, is considered "acceptable" by the anti-gun standards. Those elements need to realize that they're being used in a "Divide and rule" strategy, and that it's just a matter of time before they're stabbed in the back. They need to side without compromise, and they need to do it now.
Unity of all sport shooters is what Firearms UK has in mind with its next step.
An organization dedicated to protect the remainders of gun ownership in the United Kingdom, Firearms UK launched the UNITY 2015 campaign, aimed to repeal the 1997 Firearms (Amendment) (No.2) Act and Sections 12, 1(c) and 13 of the 1997 Firearms (Amendment) Act No.1 in a way that will make it legal again for common British citizens to own rimfire sporting handguns.
Given the current draconian state of the British gun laws, it's common sense how a broader relaxation would be desirable; the above-mentioned situation, however − a split gun owners front and a hostile, largely brainwashed public opinion − makes the politics of "small steps ahead" the only way to achieve the goal of a future broader reinstatement of gun rights in Great Britain.
It is the hope of all4shooters.com that, for the well-being of the British shooters' community, the whole of it will provide full support to Firearms UK in this campaign and will lead it to success: the previous campaign of the association, aimed to the repeal of the Firearms (Amendment) (No.2) Act, obtained a little over 21,000 signatures − a good response providing a real opportunity on which a better future could be built for Britain. No Country needs draconian gun laws, and the United Kingdom certainly doesn't deserve them.
The return of rimfire sporting pistols to the United Kingdom will revive a legitimate, inclusive, and once very popular sport.
With the new British Government having declared itself supportive of legitimate sporting shooting, chances of success are higher this time; and signs around are that common sense is slowly and painfully returning to some sectors of the British administration when it comes to gun ownership-related topics, given how the consequences of the failure of 47 (or 95, depending from the point of view!) years of gun control are now tragically clear and undeniable − a stern warning to whoever may want to try and follow "the British way".