Vir Cantium

I'm right, you know …

Yes Minister 2009

Scene: Home Secretary’s office. It’s been six months since the Summer 2008 reshuffle, and the current Home Secretary wants to make his mark.

Permanent Secretary: Well, Home Secretary, we still have a problem with gun crime. It’s up on last year. Most of it is linked to drug gangs it seems.
Home Secretary: Well, we have to be seen to be doing something <cough> I mean, we have to do something.
PS: Hmmm, but I don’t think the Treasury will like anything too … brave. The Chancellor has been quite clear about the need for reining in budgets…
HS: No no. We need to announce that we’re thinking of doing something about it.
PS: Oh, that’s OK.
HS: Now, all this drug fuelled gang violence. They’re using guns, so let’s ban the guns.
PS: Errr, the guns are already illegal. The problem is that the criminals don’t seem to care about the law.
HS: If the guns are illegal then how come they’re still using them?
PS: As I said, Home Secretary, they’re criminals. By definition …
HS: I know! They must be using deactivated weapons and activating them again. We’ll ban deactivated weapons.
PS: Yes, Home Secretary, but the ban on deactivated weapons was already in the Queen’s Speech last November after last year’s Home Secretary decided to ban them. It’s going through the committee stage at the moment, remember?
HS: Right. Well, that’ll sort it then.
PS: Probably not, Home Secretary. You see (sighs wearily) The. Criminals. Don’t. Care. About. The. Law.
HS: What about imitation weapons?
PS: Like children use to play soldiers with?
HS: Play soldiers? That sounds terrible. We must ban imitation weapons to protect the children from becoming violent gunmen.
PS: Errr…
HS: So, that’s the next generation safe. But what about gun crime now? If guns are banned, and deactivated weapons are banned, then … I know! Guns are made of metal aren’t they?
PS: Generally yes, Home Secretary, but …
HS: That’s it then. We’ll ban metal. Draft me a speech for tomorrow will you?
PS: (Mentally weighing up departmental transfer opportunities against early retirement pay-off) Yes, Home Secretary.

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