Japan from the inside out

Let them take the law into their own hands?

Posted by ampontan on Tuesday, June 17, 2008

CANADIAN COLUMNIST George Jonas writes about the recent killings in Akihabara:

The only thing that could have reduced the number of Mr. Kato’s victims in Tokyo this week — other than a police officer on patrol who costs money — would have been an armed citizen who costs nothing.

While I usually agree with Mr. Jonas, and this solution works in the United States, I don’t think it would translate very well to this country at all.

10 Responses to “Let them take the law into their own hands?”

  1. Bender said

    Is he really Canadian?

  2. Ken said

    Absurd. As if civillian shooters could hit a moving target with a clear shot in Akihabara. Besides, if he allows this condition to be true, he may as well put a gun in the hand of Mr Kato, which changes the dynamic quite a bit.

    I also take issue with the phrasing “The only thing that could have reduced the number of Mr. Kato’s victims…” Is that really the “only” potential solution he can come up with? Sounds like rhetoric to me.

  3. Aceface said

    I second to Ken.What if Kato was armed with semi-automatic pistols instead of a dagger.I bet there would be more than seven dead lying in the streets of Akiba.

  4. Vald said

    Agree, I’m 3rd

  5. keiko said

    Since the police had the information on the rampage at Akihabara warned of on the i-phone by Kato, police snipers should have been mobilized. They should be allowed to shoot at a would-be killer at their discretion. The Japanese mass media tend to accusingly report focusing on police shootings rather than the crimes and criminals.

  6. ampontan said

    Bender: Naturalized Canadian. He was born in Hungary and went to Canada with his family during the 1956 revolution that the Soviets stamped out. He’s been in Canada ever since. He’s over 60 now.

  7. Paul said

    Aceface, most people who go on rampages with guns don’t even manage to kill seven people.

    Anyway, I agree with Jonas, and I’m glad others are attacking Japan’s hysterically strict laws regarding weapons. I hope the Japanese themselves are getting the message. I’m surprised that a Canadian is suggesting this though. Carrying a gun isn’t legal there either, but maybe he’s working on that.

    However, I can see why Ampontan doesn’t think it will work in Japan. We’re talking about a country that recently passed a law that forces employers to measure their employees’ waistlines and penalizes them for employing fat people. I don’t think the Japanese really believe in freedom.

  8. Bender said

    Have you checked out the new Supreme Court ruling regarding the hand gun ban in D.C.? The case gives insight on whether rights are “absolute” and also the struggle between “originalist” and “liberal” justices that I mentioned way back.

  9. ampontan said

    Bender: I read that the decision had been rendered, but not much on the background. Got a juicy link?

  10. Bender said

    This one is comprehensive and has lots of useful links, including the text of the decision (it’s 157 pages):

    These are some opinions:




    I kind of see similarities with the “Article 9” debate in Japan.

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