Debate over Handguns in Canada

Canadian newspapers come out against the big pushing going on up there to ban handguns:

1) The Ottawa Citizen - 1/22/2008 - PAGE: A10
Gunning for easy answers
"There's no doubting the sincerity of his grief and anger. Indeed, outrage is an appropriate response when people kill, especially when they kill people they've never met out of indifference to human life. But outrage isn't a solution. It's an emotion that leads people to assign blame, as quickly and loudly as possible. Outraged people need rallying cries, and rallying cries must be short and simple.

But the social factors that create crime are not simple. A ban on all handguns would certainly not end gun crime. It wouldn't root out violence, or alter gang behaviour, or topple the markets in illegal drugs and weapons. . . . ."

2) National Post - 1/22/2008 PAGE: A14
Handgun bans don't work
"If restricting ownership of handguns among ordinary law-abiding citizens had a positive impact on crime, our existing laws would already have produced the benefits. Since 1934, anyone wanting to own a pistol in Canada has had to be registered with the RCMP or the federal gun registry. The application process is long and arduous. The fact that almost no registered handgun owner ever commits murder or other forms of violent crime in Canada (one of the recent Toronto shootings being a noteworthy exception) is a testament to the thoroughness of the background checks.

On top of that, since the early 1990s, Canada's 500,000 or so handgun owners have had to have police approval to move their guns from their homes, and even then may only move them under the strictest of conditions. Typically, owners must lock their guns in a tamper-resistant case, which must further be locked in the trunks of their cars. Then they must drive directly from their homes to an approved shooting range and back, making no stops along the way -- even for gas or a restroom break."

3) The Toronto Sun - 1/22/2008 - PAGE: 6 - By MARK BONOKOSKI
Despite what Mayor Miller says, a ban on handguns would do little to quell gun violence in this city -- just look to the U.K. for proof
. . .
The following year -- in 1997 -- the British Parliament passed a law banning the outright ownership of handguns.

Two years after those weapons were banned, a report by the Centre for Defence Studies at London's prestigious King College indicated the use of handguns in crime rose 40% in Great Britain -- from 2,648 incidents in 1997-98 to 3,685 incidents in 1999-2000 -- and concluded that the ban served to only target legitimate gun owners, and did absolutely nothing to target criminals.

And the problem, according to the latest figures, is worsening.

In what was cited as the "stark truth about the battle against gun crime" in Britain's major cities, gunshot murders in 2006 rose 6%, and gunshot injuries rose 10%, totalling out at 958 victims -- all of which represented a 20% overall increase in handgun shootings since the statistics were first compiled two years into the handgun ban. . . .

At least this is progress when even the Toronto newspapers are opposing the ban. On the other hand, the NDP came out for the ban.

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Anonymous Keith said...

Hi John,

Sorry, quick hijack.


link to a free pdf copy of Colvin & Viall "US rifles & Machineguns"

I paid a lot of money for a reprint of it about 20 years ago.


1/23/2008 5:56 AM  
Anonymous Johnny Canuck said...

It is refreshing to see some of the major media taking a positive stance on this question. We still suffer in Canada from those politicians that put their political agenda ahead of public safety and individual rights and freedoms. There is a delicate balance here between rights and the true needs of public safety. Emotion, jingoism, propaganda and ignorance of reality still drive most of our political parties on the subject of gun control, the sole exception being the Conservative Party of Canada.

With each outrage some stand in the blood of the innocent to deliver their usual emotion ridden rant. They contribute to the problem by ignoring the true base causes. Opinion is shifting though, as the facts get out. The anti-gun stance of the discredited and disgraced Liberal Party is slowly being exposed for the sham it is.

1/23/2008 1:08 PM  
Anonymous nimrod45 said...

Of course, the Toronto "Red" Star, the official organ of everything Lieberal, has come out in favour of a handgun ban, as have most of the letters they have printed. I know that I, and a good hundred others, have sent in pro-gun letters, but none of these seem to make it to print.

Quelle suprise.

1/23/2008 7:36 PM  

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