Did you know that in Ireland you can get a gun faster than you can get a pizza delivery?
These are just a few of the facts that are raised tonight in TV3’s News Special programme entitled Ireland’s Gun Crime Crisis. The programme aims to highlight the current problem of gun crime in Ireland and to show the brutal impact that it can have on individuals and society as a whole.
Gun crime has featured strongly in the news in recent weeks with the killing of 16 year old Melanie McNamara in Tallaght, among other cases.
According to Conor Tiernan, the producer for the show, the programme will aim to raise awareness about gun crime in the country.
“The purpose of the programme really is to pose the question: how serious is gun crime? Is it better or worse than it was before? How is it impact on people’s lives? How is it impact on society? And what can be done to stop these crimes happening or at least control it?” he said.
The programme also features an interview with a man who is described as a well-known drug dealer and who has direct experience of Irish gun crime.
Mr Tiernan says that while drug dealers are notorious for their reluctance to talk to the media, this drug dealer (who appears wearing a balaclava) was willing to be filmed.
“This particular drug dealer felt so strongly about the shooting of Melanie in Tallaght that he actually felt that things had gone too far, so that’s what led him to do the interview,” he said.
The programme will feature interviews with politicians, journalists, academics and people who have lost partners and relatives to gun crime. There will also be a live studio debate on the topic.
“There’s a lot of ignorance about gun crime. People don’t know much about it because most people live happy lives and don’t come into contact with guns, so one of the central purposes of this programme is to inform people about it,” said Mr Tiernan.
“We’re looking at the illegitimate trade in weapons and its human cost, but we’re also looking at the legitimate side of the gun trade in Ireland which I definitely think is something people don’t know much about,” he added.
Catch the TV3 News Special Ireland’s Gun Crisis tonight at 8pm on TV3.