The British government relaxed gun laws Tuesday to allow shooting teams to prepare for the 2012 London Olympics.Source
Britain banned handguns in 1997 after the massacre of 16 children and a teacher at a primary school in Dunblane, Scotland. The law includes a ban on guns for licensed sports, preventing domestic pistol events.
But Home Secretary Jacqui Smith has invoked special exemptions in England and Wales. A similar exemption allowed pistols for the 2002 Commonwealth Games in Manchester.
Sports Minister Gerry Sutcliffe said the government would make sure that competitors and officials can "possess their special competition pistols for the duration of the games and for any special warm-up events."
"competitors can possess their special competition pistols for the duration of the games and for any special warm-up events."
What a relief! Imagine how far in the PGA rankings Tiger Woods would have climbed in his early days if he had the permission to use his set of golf clubs only for the duration of the tournament.
Or Martina Navratilova, allowed to use her tennis racquet only for the duration of the match and for a couple of minutes of warm-up before the first serve - but would have to surrender her dreaded instrument of death to the government after the last set.