M16 (courtesy wikimedia.org

“The home of Godzilla actor Aaron Taylor-Johnson [not shown] and his wife, Fifty Shades of Grey director Sam Taylor-Johnson, was raided by police on Thursday evening (August 28) after a passerby saw a machine gun through the window in London, England,” justjared.com reports. Only it wasn’t a rock. It was a rock lobster! Sorry. I mean, it wasn’t a machine gun. It was a “fully decommissioned M16 assault rifle [not shown] that was provided to Mrs Taylor-Johnson by the international charity Peace One Day as part of an art project entitled ‘Peace One Day M16’.” Yeah, that so works on a post-modern level . . .

Anyway, anyone who’s lived in a police state (i.e., a state where the populace is disarmed) will tell you that it quickly gets to the point where everyone spies on everyone else, especially when it comes to privately held guns. For the public good. Or cash. Or privileges. Or protection from the State. Or something. True story.

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39 Responses to This Is What Happens to a Disarmed Populace: Everyone Becomes a Spy

  1. I wonder if they’re part of the anti-gun entertainment cabal. If so that’s kinda funny.

    More importantly, what does Rock Lobster have to do with this? Maybe just that the video from that is more terrifying than any police state.

  2. And this is surprising, how? This would happen here as well. At least in some of the more anti gun cities and states.

    • I moved from Massachusetts. Talk about a pain in the ass state. What kills me is they just keep voting in those democrats. At one point we had 3 speakers of the house get indicted in a row, 3 in a row for corruption….but hey you can’t have the public with concealed carry……I live in Florida now….the gunshine state….love it.

  3. I mean, it wasn’t a machine gun. It was a “fully decommissioned M16 assault rifle [not shown] that was provided to Mrs Taylor-Johnson by the international charity Peace One Day as part of an art project entitled ‘Peace One Day M16’.” A little bit ironic don’ch think. Yeah, a little bit to much ironic. Yeah, I really do think.

  4. If you remove from people all ability to protect themselves, they will insist upon a police state, for their own safety.

    • Nothing wrong with that.
      I stay aware of my surroundings, at least I attempt to, If I see something that is NOT ordinary, and I believe it could be dangerous I “say something”.
      I wouldn’t have in this case, but I have in the past.

      • “See something, Say something.”
        -“nothing wrong with that…”

        Yeah, there is. When you’re told that everything is dangerous that isn’t exactly what the government wants, you start having SWAT teams react to people carrying umbrellas and people who write stories about shooting dinosaurs for school getting arrested.

        The “see something say something” campaign was an extremely successful way to backdoor citizen spying into the American culture. Yes, being aware of your safety is important, and if you see something that endangers you, you should take appropriate action to ensure you are protected. But just like I wouldn’t suggest arming yourself with a rifle for everything that endangers me, I wouldn’t suggest calling the police about it either. Cars coming at me in traffic endanger me, but getting out of their way offers better protection against them than a rifle. If I see someone carrying a bomb, I’m calling the cops. If I read a story about someone shooting a dinosaur in his neighbor’s back yard, I’m going to avoid taking my pet dinosaur to his neighbor’s back yard. The “see something, say something” mentality says you should call the cops over that, and there is a very real problem with people believing that this is the way we should act; it’s cowardly and dependent.

  5. Now that the UK PM has put the threat level as “severe” thanks to ex-pat ISIS supporters and Muslim radicals in their own country, I am going to assume this will be a pretty common occurrence. As far as rattling out neighbors, that is far more likely in most of the EU where people seem to love to drag someone down whom they perceive to be better than them. I am not at all surprised.

    • I think this is going to be fun, hope the US follows suit. In today’s world, UK knows who has joined ISIS, plans to revoke their passports and have them arrested if they try to reenter the country. Somebody just HAS to set up a system to record their faces when apprehended! “But.. but …but … That’s not FAIR!”

  6. I thought even thinking of a gun in the EU was cause for a lockdown.

    Fast forward to the TMZ news of the couple moving to the U.S. to bring us
    Peace & Harmony with an M-16 sculpture.

  7. That’s just so weird. Someone walking by on the street sees a gun on a desk in someone’s basement studio, so they call the police? The police show up and just enter the dwelling, without a warrant, without the homeowners even being there? Why would anyone live in a place like that? Why would anyone choose to transform their country into a place like that?

    Why do despots the world over even bother with coups and revolutions, genocide and secret police? It’s just so incredibly easy to get entire nations to forfeit their freedom, imprison themselves, and then pat themselves on the back in appreciation of their own progressivism.

    • One of the more bizarre aspects of all dictators, as far as I can tell, is that they seem so bent on keeping up appearances. They get the legislatures to pass constitutional amendments handing over power, they still issue decrees which legislatures must rubber stamp, they still go through all the rigamarole of passing laws, having show trials, and generally pretending to be under the rule of laws.

      Hitler, for instance. I could understand the first few months, passing the law which gave him the power to issue decrees, but after a certain point, why? Did it actually fool anybody? Were there any political enemies who said, “Oh heck, nothing to do about it, yet, because it’s all legal.”

      I just do not understand.

      • Yeah, I know what you mean. Hitler even even tried to play off his invasion of Poland as him defending Germany from Polish attack. Why bother with the ridiculous charade?

        Same with naming their little authoritarian kingdoms things like the “Democratic Republic of….” The lamest is when they actually conduct nationwide elections, with only themselves as a candidate, then proclaim how “The people have spoken!” when they receive 100% of the vote. I guess they just lose touch with reality and start believing their own propaganda.

      • Denial, it’s not just a big river in Egypt. The show election gives people the feeling they have a voice in the choice of their leader. It gives them an excuse not to have to do something, like pick up a gun and throw the bum out by force.

        This is what our own two party election at the national level consists of. It’s a show election giving us the illusion of having a choice in our “leader”,

        Democrat/Republican, two heads of the same monster of statism.

    • Although the UK doesn’t have a Constitution or Bill of Rights, they do have similar court rulings on Search and Seizure to ours; One is the ‘Plain View Exception’, where if one can rightfully see what appears to be evidence of a crime out in the open, with no ‘search’ needed to seize it, no warrant is required. Put another way, if a peace officer or anyone else is rightfully in a place, even in public outside of the private place that contains it, and happens to see something illegal lying out in the open, or visible through a window or open door, it is not a search’ under law.

      In this case, displaying what in the UK is clearly a prohibited weapon in clear sight to the casual observer on the outside of a home is pretty much beyond stupid; If the firearm is not IMMEDIATELY recognizable as a toy or inert mock-up, the police would have sufficient reasonable cause to enter and seize it without a warrant and without notice.

      This would apply in the US, and has applied since the 1925 Steele Decision, with periodic updates as new cases came before the Supreme Court.

      The lesson, here, is simple; Keep your illegal things, or things that appear illegal to the casual observer, out of sight, and never invite the cops into your house if you have illegal things lying about.

      • I don’t agree. In fact, the officers in Steele did have a warrant. Steele is important, though, because it extends the Carroll v. U.S. (1925) vehicle plain view exception to structures. That’s not nothing, but it’s not all that much more, because it doesn’t change the standards of the exception, just the location of it (buildings, in addition to vehicles). The standard was simply whether a “man of prudence and caution” would believe a crime had been committed based on what he sees in plain view. It doesn’t specify that the man in question be an expert on the underlying subject matter with X-ray vision.

        That may *sound* like a low standard, and maybe it is, but it works in a good way in that it establishes how obvious the evidence must be; i.e., so much so that your basic man of prudence and caution would recognize it. Some kind of item resembling an M16 on a desk could be a million different things, other than an actual, operable, illegal M16 rifle, which in the U.S. may well be legally registered. The prudent man standard just wouldn’t give U.S. officers of today enough to work with in such a scenario to skip the warrant. You’re right, subsequent decisions have influence, too. Later decisions specify the standard to use. The major one is Horton v. CA (1990), which sets out the standard as:

        1. Officer must already be lawfully present in an area protected by the 4th.
        2. The item must be out in plain view.
        3. Officer must immediately recognize the item as evidence or contraband without making a further intrusion.

        Hmmm….in the London example, it’s a basement studio office window. Sounds like one of those small windows about a foot above sidewalk level, and the kind of thing a practical view of the office inside could only be achieved by stooping down and intentionally peering in. That’s illegal in the U.S., so the police wouldn’t satisfy Horton’s lawful presence in an area standard.

        Moreover, they sure as hell couldn’t satisfy its immediately recognizability standard. You can’t tell by looking at a given M16 style rifle from a distance that is in fact real and full auto operational. After all, they do make single shot AR style rifles. Beyond that, even if they could tell it’s real, how could they tell by looking at it whether it’s illegal and not lawfully registered?

        Arizona v. Hicks (1987) clarifies the further intrusion portion. Stolen stereos were ruled inadmissible because the officers had to move them to see and run their serial numbers. That’s just pushing a stereo a few inches. No way running a rifle’s numbers, let alone hauling a rifle down to the ballistics lab for testing and/or disassembly to confirm full auto, would pass muster!

        All of this is moot, anyway, because there were no exigent circumstances. The residents weren’t even home. A judge here would toss it without a warrant and not even consider the rest.

      • It’s interesting that it is assumed that the observed object must be illegal. It may well have been a toy an airsoft replica or a legally owned bolt action AR15 but all those likely scenarios are to be proven after the fact. It is in effect guilty til proven innocent. I think the reasonable clause is being abused here though. IMO it is not reasonable to assume that a gun shaped object must be the most illegal form of gun shaped object when reason suggests there are any number of alternate possibilities that are far more likely and legal. It would be like your neighbor seeing your semi AR15 and assuming it is an illegally converted FA machine gun. In most areas such a call would go nowhere unless said witness could provide evidence of FA operation at the least.

  8. Ha! This is hilarious. Sgt Frank I feel your pain. I live in Cook County,Illinois. Last 2 idiot governors convicts. And maybe the present Mr. Potato Head Quinn.

    • rauner to the rescue! when his wifes mug pops up on those endorsements it ruins the taste of my paps shmear blue ribbon…
      plus walker. thompson. (and don’t forget powell’s shoe boxes).
      i used to ride the el downtown everyday with blablablagoyavitch. his hair was perfect.

  9. If they were so uptight and lock down the whole school on account of finding a single cartridge in the hallway, we’d all have a really long vacation in the 80s.

  10. If the British people believed that gun control had worked then the passerby would have assumed the rifle to be a toy or replica. The fact that police were called is proof to my mind that deep down they know it hasn’t worked. Despite all the laws, they still assume what they see seeing is an evil gun.

    • Good point. I notice the police did not refuse to respond, saying instead “there are no guns here”. IOW, everybody know and accepts that criminals will have guns.

  11. I think England has a large problem and it’s Extreme radical Muslim population……and their worried about guns in some guys home…..if they were smart they should allow every law abiding citizen born in England the right to own a weapon……think about it.

  12. Hmmmm..OK, time to pop a few illusions here: were not disarmed. I have a locked gun cabinet stuffed full of bangsticks, including my m&p 15-22 with its complement of 25 and 50 round mags. I also have a 7.62, another couple of .22 and a couple of shotguns. So yes, we are allowed guns, but they are *controlled*. We are not allowed semis in anything other than rimfire, and no handguns. Thems the facts.

    • The sad thing is you think your response is meaningful against our statements about your idiot laws. No different than a response I got concerning free speech once. ” ofcourse we have free speech just like you! Sure the government has and dose censor news entertainment and personal works but those things are unpleasant or of no interest to me so it’s ok. Besides, they only want what’s best for us!”

    • Mate, Americans won’t understand our firearms laws, but you’re right, although there are some issues. Pistols aren’t exactly banned, just barrel lengths, and it would have excluded rimfire pistols until Blair got in. Muzzle loading and over length magnum revolvers? Legal.

      I often wonder why people think we are ‘unarmed’. Between my dad, my brother’s and I we own an armoury. But I guess Americans just love their pistols too much to understand English legislation. No, we don’t have a nation of Glocks and Colts- and frankly we don’t need them. Yeah, they’re cool guns but why the talk of ‘disarming the people’? If there is a revolution your 9mms are basically potato guns against high powered automatic rifles and body armour. But good luck with your pointless arguments. I’m sure the government is quaking in their boots about the 1911s out there…

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