Ah, Japan. Once the utopian ideal for gun controllers. A shining example of what America could be if we eliminated the Second Amendment and turned Japanese.
How Japan Has Virtually Eliminated Shooting Deaths – The Atlantic
The Japan lesson: Can America learn from the country that has almost zero gun deaths – The Washington Post
Why Japan owes its gun laws – and its lack of gun violence – CBS News
What US Can Learn From Countries Close to Eliminating Gun Violence – Business Insider (that one is from only 4 days ago)
Official statistics from a lot of countries are dubious. Japan is one of them, largely because a good deal of crime is buried to save face. So we don’t know what Japan’s real murder rate is, but it’s a good deal lower than Newark or Detroit. But Japan is a very different culture. It’s not however a non-violent one.
Mass killings in Asia most often involve arson and some have been deadlier than those in America.
But all those clickbait media articles insisting that Japan should be our model have run into the hard reality that gun control doesn’t work. No, not even in Japan.
Abe was giving a campaign speech in the city of Nara, in southern Japan, when he was shot in the neck and heart at close range. The alleged gunman—named by local authorities as 41-year-old Tetsuya Yamagami—was photographed throwing a homemade firearm to the ground before being tackled by security officials.
Videos of the shooting circulating online show the gunman approaching Abe from behind before firing two shots, both producing extremely loud cannon-like booms and plumes of white smoke.
Police later said they found multiple homemade guns and explosives when they searched Yamagami’s house, adding that he had allegedly admitted to shooting Abe with a DIY firearm.
From images of the gun, captured by bystanders including a reporter for Japan’s public broadcaster NHK, experts immediately suspected it was homemade. “The box-like device is wrapped in black tape and smoke can be seen coming from the muzzle. It’s certainly no standard shotgun,” a former detective for the Metropolitan Police Department firearms control division told The Daily Beast after reviewing photos.
While stressing it’s too early to be definitive about the precise design of the weapon used to murder Abe, another authority said the gun appeared to have some highly unusual features.
“I think the first interesting observation is that it’s clearly electrically fired,” said N. R. Jenzen-Jones, an arms and munitions intelligence specialist and Director of the U.K.-based Armament Research Services (ARES). “There’s electrical wire passing through each of those end caps that you can see in one of the images. That indicates to me that it’s an electrically-fired firearm.”
“My hunch is that it’s probably a muzzle-loading design,” Jenzen-Jones added. “It’s probably a smooth-bore weapon—by which I mean unrifled, like a shotgun—but again, that’s not a certainty.”
Every news story mentions that Japan has low rates of gun violence. True. Guns are hard to come by in Japan. But if someone wants to shoot someone else, they will find a way.