The Ridiculousness of Unarmed Cops in the UK?

By Mark Walters : Opinion

English Bobbys
The Ridiculousness of Unarmed Cops in the UK?
Mark Walters
Mark Walters

USA – -( Some word pairs do not belong together in the same sentence, such as “career politician,” for example.

Representing your state was never meant to be a full-time job with a cushy pension and free government funded, (our money) lifelong, healthcare benefits.

Another word pair that comes to mind? Oh, maybe “news personality.” What is it about delivering the news that makes someone a multimillionaire celebrity?

Look, I’m all for everyone getting as much dough as they can for their work and I certainly don’t blame the “personality” for taking advantage of the environment that enables them to grab it, but trust me on this–when that “news personality” crams the millions into their accounts, what little objectivity they may have had disappears and the “news” becomes all about them. Don’t believe me? See Megyn Kelly as a prime example. (I could name many others but she pisses me off, so I’ll pick on her)

Another word pair? How about “unarmed/disarmed cops?” Do I even have to explain that one? Well, I’m gonna.

First, let me distinguish between the two words, unarmed and disarmed. A person is unarmed by choice. Example–you are unarmed today because your gun is too heavy to carry and you’re too lazy to pick the right holster and gun combination for your attire. Disarmed, on the other hand, means unarmed by force. That means disarmed by a law, employer, government, another person during a fight, etc. That distinction is vital when we talk about the disarmed cops in Great Britain.

I know several cops, male and female and not one of them that I have spoken to would even consider leaving their home to start a shift, without a sidearm, no matter what else rested on their duty belt. It’s not only unfathomable, it’s unconscionable. I’m also not going to pretend to understand the mindset of any department anywhere in the world that would put their officers out on the street without a sidearm to defend themselves and their communities. I can’t wrap my head around that, particularly in the age of terror and in places that are under constant threat of, or experience, regular terror activity.

Think about this – a disarmed police officer doing the job he or she is sworn to do is then forced by the state into mortal combat (as the disarmed London transport cop during the third terrorist attack in the UK in ten weeks) at great disadvantage.


Let’s take that same logic to the civilian population in the UK. Are they unarmed or disarmed? Like many cops in the UK, the people are disarmed by the state, thereby, like the cops, forced into mortal combat at a complete and total disadvantage against dedicated killers with knives, trucks or their own guns when terror breaks out. Look, I’ve been interviewed on British national radio over at the BBC and there are a couple things I can tell you with certainty.

First, it’s been my experience that the disarmament movement there, as here, is run by those who believe themselves to be the “elites,” those being the media and liberal politician. Secondly, the vast majority of the British population think like the vast majority of Americans. They believe in the right to bear arms and those old enough to remember being disarmed by their government are now wishing they had not been asleep at the wheel when their rights were stolen. How do I know those things? Here’s just a sample of the many emails I received after my last appearance on the UK nationally broadcast BBC Jeremy Vine Show:

Good Afternoon,

I did try to call the radio station concerning your piece, my comments would have been- Who the hell are we (U.K) to tell the Americans who can have a Gun and who can’t. Me and my family have been going to the U.S (Florida) for over 25 yrs and I’ve never met a more responsible people as the Americans. I’m so sorry if those idiots at the BBC just put on the air, gun haters!

I totally support your feelings and your reasons why you have a gun.
Please know there are people in the U.K who support your point of view.

John Baldock

Here’s a tweet I received regarding that interview:

There were many others, in fact I was warned not to “let what happened to us, happen to you,” more than once. My point? Most people, anywhere in the world, recognize the fact that it’s always a good guy with a gun stopping a bad guy with a gun, knife, bomb, truck, etc., and to be disarmed in the face of evil is utter insanity. I will not pretend to understand a cop who would go to work in the UK without a sidearm. I can’t. It doesn’t make sense to me and as I said, I can’t wrap my head around the concept.

That begs the following question. Unlike those forcibly disarmed Brits who are forced into hand-to-hand mortal combat with nothing but chairs and bottles against dedicated killers with knives, guns, and bombs, we aren’t, therefore….

…why on God’s green Earth would any American choose to go unarmed?

I can’t wrap my head around that either.


About Mark Walters

Mark Walters is the host of two nationally syndicated radio broadcasts, Armed American Radio and Armed American Radio’s Daily Defense with Mark Walters. He is the Second Amendment Foundations 2015 Gun Rights Defender of the Year award recipient and co-author of two books, Lessons from Armed America with Kathy Jackson (Whitefeather Press) and Lessons from UnArmed America with Rob Pincus (Whitefeather Press)

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You may notice an interesting “common thread” among answers from posters of different political perspectives. While there are many on each side who simply state their opinion, often in vehement terms, when you see a logical argument, it is virtually always put forth by a “pro-gun” poster. There is a good reason for this; there are no logically sound arguments on the opposing side. Those that have been put forth are all logically refutable or clearly contrary to easily established facts. This should cause us to ask, “Why do those opposed to an armed public (or at least one where… Read more »


Just thought I’d better put this out there before I get replies from LEOs who have seen ordinary folks acting badly. I don’t believe that ALL ordinary folks, ALWAYS behave well, obviously sometimes some won’t. But as a general rule, I think they do. Please keep in mind that LEOs typically interact with people who are NOT ordinary folks. I’ve been driving for 55 plus years and have been stopped once in my life (at a rural Louisiana speed trap). The only times police have been at my house was when I invited LEO friends over for BBQs. The vast… Read more »

The Dude

They were put down in eight minutes. Our average response time is 10 minutes and then 2 hours to decide what to do. The guns were there pretty quick and put to work right away stopping the threat.


The UK may have ‘honor among thieves’ but this is not the case with


They will kill you 24-7-365 unless you kill them first.


A lot of good total civilian disarmament in the UK did during “The Troubles” starring the Irish Republican Army! The Brits never learned: now they have thousands of government-dependent jihadi sheep-shaggers, shooting and stabbing them…and the constables are disarmed and untrained. The UK will fall, along with Belgium, France, Sweden, Germany, Netherlands, Spain, Italy and most of Western Europe.

That will not happen in the USA: we Patriots are armed and trained, and just itching to have at it!


Introducing guns for everyone in the UK is just a stupid and misguided idea. Walters has no clue.


I think perhaps YOUR statement is the misguided one. Until the end of WWI there were few laws regulating the ownership or public carrying of arms in the British Isles (Ireland was something of an exception – especially if you were Catholic). This only changed when the Crown became afraid of a public revolt (literally an overthrowing of the government) in the aftermath of WWI, when the public first began to lean of the true magnitude of the personnel losses in the war. Prior to that point, England had a long history of armed citizenry, dating back at least, to… Read more »

Wild Bill

@OV, That is how I understand the English disarmament situation, too. English disarmament is a recent state of being. An excellent outline of the history of the English disarmament. And logical conclusion.


WW1 was a looong time ago and, culturally, the UK does not have the American mindset when it comes to firearms where generations have accepted and expected them as the norm. There is not a similar hunting tradition either, so guns were either army or, increasingly, police. The police forces across the UK have done an exemplary job throughout history without having to always resort to guns and they still do so. Unfortunately, in today’s world they have to deal with the ever-present threat of terrorist S8itbags, so need to be appropriately trained and armed. It does not follow that… Read more »


“xx” must be your chromosomal code.


The problem is that the “crazies” and Jihadis already HAVE them! Further, those who don’t have them yet, can’t be prevented, by any laws imposed, from getting them in the future. “Gun Crime” in the UK has increased dramatically SINCE the imposition of draconian restrictions. Same thing with knives, despite all the laws against THEM. Extensive American experience, over many decades, has shown that, while training is certainly a GOOD thing (and I’m all for it, personally), even untrained, but armed, citizens have effectively saved themselves and others from violent assaults on frequent basis. Further, here in America, the recent… Read more »

MikeB in WI

Gil, is that you?


I remember some years ago in the small town in IL where I came from, I found an abandoned bicycle in the lot next to my house. Thinking it could have been stolen I called the PD. They sent a young officer out to pick it up. He was in uniform with badge and all except he had no pistol. I asked…”why are you unarmed?” He said “they won’t let me carry a gun.” I told him “If I was a sworn officer I wouldn’t step out the door without a gun!” He just didn’t seem to understand. Maybe he… Read more »


I can account for your experience. He was a Code Enforcement Officer (as I am). This is being unarmed is universal throughout the country for this position. We are expected to go on a persons property, tell them they are breaking the law and telling them what they have to do. I work in a remote county and can have the nearest LE as much as 45 minutes away from my location. Yet the County Commissioners and County Sheriff say I cannot be armed. I am uniformed and have the authority to issue criminal citations (which are very seldom willingly… Read more »

Wild Bill

@SGM, Thank you for protecting my freedom. Also, in your work situation, as you have described it, the County Sheriff may never find your body. Couldn’t you just send them a certified letter?


Thank you, I served 26 years and value every moment of that.

Unfortunately, my activities are complaint driven from county residents and that requires that I visit the site of the complaint to verify there is a violation first. My appearance at the property is almost always noted by someone that is home. The majority of the properties are 5 acres or greater and involve a long approach to the residence.

Wild Bill

@sgmldr, You need good glass, a hilltop, and body armor!


I follow the DRIP philosophy.
Don’t Re-elect Incumbent Politicians.

Chris Mallory

They have it partially right. Cops for the most part should not be armed. We have seen in the US that many cops are unable to exercise that privilege in a safe manner. Yes I said privilege, because cops work for the citizens and we get to dictate what their working conditions are.

Citizens should be armed, not government employees.


Chris, I’ll split the difference…

Police officers should indeed be armed, since they are tasked to protect society generally (and here in Oklahoma they do a laudably fine job!). Citizens must be armed, since they are responsible for their own safety personally (and again, here in Oklahoma we are quite gun-friendly – citizens and government).

It takes both.


Agree. Police must be armed. But given the average response time where I live you could be very dead before they arrive. So, be aware, be armed, practice and have a mindset for survival.

James Bailey

Having had family on both sides of the law, that is to say, both convicted felons and badges, allow me to point out that your premise is severely flawed! News flash, The Thin Blue Line in these times is the difference between you making it home, and your family making it home, or not making it home. You are one man, with either one or two side arms on your person, and possibly an edged weapon is a backup. Just in case you haven’t taken note, the violence these days is all too often precipitated by groups of thugs and/or… Read more »

Wayne Clark

Chris, I have to disagree with that conclusion. True enough, cops are classified as “public servants”…but their job description entails putting themselves in harms way on a constant regimen, whether it’s a ‘simple’ traffic stop, where the unknown is a window away, or answering a DV call, where it is already volatile…& no telling what or if weapons are involved, so being armed is not a privilege but a necessity. I do agree however, that the training needs more attention on being attentive as opposed to agressive. Agression has its place but not until warranted & certainly not with the… Read more »

Clark Kent

Career politicians are OUR fault, not the fault of politicians. Elections are held on a regular basis. ‘We have met the enemy and he is us’ – Pogo.

Wild Bill

@"MCCLOUD!" Kent, Now, Clark, you have said a lot of good stuff lately. Don’t go and spoil it. I think that the politicians are partly at fault, too.

James Bailey

Nah Wild Bill, on the Clark Kent on this one: Were the Lemmings to stop voting for the professional pol’s, the left-wingers especially, and the RINO’s especially, things would really improve. Sadly, the plebs have finally figured out that they can be willfully bribed by the pro pols with so-called freebies! This vicious cycle has helped get us where we are at today! The RINO’s on the other hand, choose to quote unquote ‘not Rock the Boat’: they like their perks, they like their Bennies, they like their power, and they like their prestige, in the purest, most selfish elitist… Read more »


As long as true Patriots exist (and there really are some of us remaining!), the Republic has not been completely “lost.” Although, as you say, we must indeed prepare for the inevitably approaching Civil War.

Your cited example of the “Modern Judiciary” is certainly indisputable proof that the Republic has been severely damaged….

Wild Bill

@JB, First, I presume that by ” pro pols” you mean professional politicians. If the pro pols did not choose to be professional politicians, they would not be on the ballet for us to vote for. So the professional politicians have to be some percentage of the problem. Thus the problem is not just the voters. And Second, you say, “… they can be willfully bribed by the pro pols with so-called freebies!” If the professional politicians did not offer, what you correctly identify as bribes in the form of freebies, then there would not be a problem. Thus the… Read more »

Wild Bill

Sorry should read What ever the problems are it is not the entire fault of the voters.

Silence Dogood

Stupid is…as stupid does. Forrest Gump