There is a lot hype surrounding the success of gun laws in Australia and the United Kingdom. After having examined some of the claims I thought I would share my findings so you all can help to share the truth around the internet. The first claim we need to examine is the claim that gun bans cause homicide rates to go down. Lets look at a chart comparing the three nations, showing the % change in homicide rates since 1990. Notice a few things: 1. In 1997 the UK banned handguns almost completely in response to the Dunblane Massacre. Is this strict firearms law responsible for the fact that their homicide rate is lower than ours? Well if it is then we should see a drop in homicides after it was passed. But we don't. In fact, we see that their homicide went up and up and up, and that, as of 2009 it was still higher than it was before the handgun ban. Conclusion: no effect. 2. In 1996, the Australians banned and confiscated the vast majority of long arms and implemented heavy regulation of the remaining firearms in their country as a response to the Port Arthur massacre. The data shows that immediately following the ban there were two years in which homicide rates were higher and then eventually they did in fact start to drop. However, did the ban cause this drop? In science when we perform an experiment to determine the efficacy of a new medication we need to show that a statistically significant effect was seen in the experimental group that we did not see in a control group. The problem here is that we have a control, the United States, where guns were not confiscated and we still homicide rates dropping. In fact they drop farther and faster than those in Australia. Furthermore, around the world we see drops in homicide rates since 1990. Scientifically speaking, we have to say that we cannot reject the null hypothesis that the gun ban had no significant effect. Additionally, we can see that in Australia post-ban there is a clear substitution effect of knives for guns (data from Australian Institute of Criminology): The other claim that is made about the Australian gun ban success is that it stopped mass murders, but that is also clearly false. In 2002, five years after the confiscation, a student at Monash University arrived with six loaded handguns and shot seven people, killing two. See this link for details. Furthermore, people are still killed on masse routinely in Australia. There have been at least three cases of mass murder using fire since the ban with death tolls of 10, 15, and 21. See this link for details. The final claim that is made about the gun ban is a reduction in firearms suicides. However a 2009 paper from the Australian Institute for Suicide Research and Prevention at Griffith University concluded the following: "The observed reduction in firearms suicides was initiated prior to the 1997 introduction of the NFA in Queensland and Australia, with a clear decline observed in Australian figures from 1988. No significant difference was found in the rate pre/post the introduction of the NFA in Queensland; however, a significant difference was found for Australian data, the quality of which is noticeably less satisfactory. A marked age-difference in method choice was observed through a cohort analysis demonstrating both time and age influences. Within sequential birth cohorts, rates of firearms suicides decreased in younger males but increased in hanging suicides; this trend was far less marked in older males. CONCLUSIONS: The implemented restrictions may not be responsible for the observed reductions in firearms suicide. Data suggest that a change in social and cultural attitudes could have contributed to the shift in method preference" Clearly, some people are seeing what they want to see here.