What passes for parlimentary debate in New Zealand

"Firearms Safety Seminar—Police Contribution"

Keith Locke: Does it not undermine and run counter to the main purpose of the seminar as the Minister has just outlined it—that is, firearm safety—to fund keynote speakers such as John Lott, who is the author of a book called More Guns, Less Crime, American National Rifle Association lobbyist Mark Barnes, and Colin Greenwood, who describes the British handgun ban as “a pathetic irrelevance”; and what does the Minister think it achieves when five of the 11 keynote speakers at the conference are extreme pro-gun lobbyists?

Hon PHIL GOFF: The member is compounding the error that I just drew to his attention. He is selectively taking some—five out of 22—presenters and facilitators and saying that he does not agree with their views. I do not happen to agree with their views either, but a range of people are invited to the seminar to debate and, as the programme says—if the member had bothered reading it—to “exchange ideas, concepts, strategies and procedures for firearm safety”. One does not get a debate if one only chooses like-minded people who all say the same thing.

The talks that I gave today for the New Zealand police and the New Zealand Department of Justice went well.


Anonymous Keith said...

and herein lies the difference between debate and polemic...

Everyone I know of who has looked at gun use and mis use objectively has found either:

a positive contribution being made by gun ownership (Yourself)

or that guns and gun control are essentially a red herring in the debate about violence (Garry Kleck and Colin Greenwood)

Newzealand is to be congratulated on allowing all views to be heard so that the audience can make their own minds up.

It is good to hear that former police superintendant and long term researcher into gun control Colin Greenwood is on good form.

If he gets to read this, could he indicate whether there was any truth in a certain rich Tory buying the publisher of "Guns Review" before the 1997 British election. so that a source of objective information to gun owners could be silenced?

So much for a free debate occuring in the old colonial master...

Now Blair (that champion of democracy) has even cancelled local elections that might give poor results for his party, mid term, had he allowed the population of his bannana republic to speak.

2/23/2006 8:20 AM  

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