The “war ” between Canada and the U.S. over gun control, stimulated by an ex-cop’s kvetch, continues apace. Albertan Andrew Scrutton launched the most recent fusillade in a letter to the editor at mlive.com headlined Canada has guns but not a paranoid gun culture. “I want to start by saying that this submission is in no way meant to be a holier than thou, we’re better than you, kind of thing,” Mr. Scrutton starts, raising the specter of condescension that has typified Canadians’ take on the debate. “I love America. I have many friends who are black.” JK. He actually said “I love America. I have many friends who are American. We enjoy visiting your great country as often as we can. Some of y’all just confuse me sometimes though . . .

First off, I’d like to say that in no way do [I] oppose or dislike guns. Canada on a whole does not dislike or oppose guns. Per capita we have a similar number of guns to our American neighbors. What we don’t have is a paranoid, might makes right, shoot first and ask questions later, gun culture.

Does the missing personal pronoun indicate credibility problems? If not, it’s worth noting that America and Canada do not have a similar number of guns per capita. Wikipedia stats rank America number one in legal gun ownership at 88.8 guns per 100 citizens. Canada is number 13 with 30.8 guns per 100 citizens.

As for the idea that our gun culture is based on “shoot first and ask questions later” all I can say is bullshit. OK, I can say more. Mr. Scrutton first.

Is there crime in Canada? Of course there is. Are there times where a concealed fire arm might protect a person in a threatening situation? Of course. That said, there are also times where not wearing a seat belt and being thrown from the car is what may save you. Does that mean it’s smart not to wear your seat belt? Of course not. Those times are the exception not the rule. If you’re going to gamble with your life, a smart man plays the odds.

So  . . . we’re done, right? A smart man carries a gun like a smart motorist wears a seatbelt. Not argument here. Oh wait.

Carrying a concealed fire arm is simply a false sense of security. If I am approaching you with ill intent and I know you may have a gun I’m more likely to carry a gun myself. If I’m looking to attack or mug you the likelihood is I’m probably nervous or on edge already. Since I’m on the offense and you’re in a position where you’re responding to my threat do you really think you’re going to be able to get to your gun before I use mine? Now, after I’ve shot you because you spooked me with your sudden movement to go for your gun (which I likely didn’t want to do in the first place) I’m probably going to take your gun because I know I can get a good buck for it on the street …and the situation snow balls.

I was talking to a gun guru yesterday about the most common and most dangerous mistakes made by citizens who carry concealed. Brannon LaBouef agrees with Mr. Scrutton: a lot of gun owner who carry are over-confident. This reduces their situational awareness and leads to strategic mistakes.

But Mr. LeBouef wasn’t arguing against concealed carry. He was arguing that citizens should carry with a more realistic idea of their own limitations. Because it’s true: Americans who exercise their right to keep and bear arms by bearing armsare playing defense. We are, after all, the good guys.

But there’s a big difference between acknowledging the challenges of armed self-defense and not being armed and not defending yourself. How does Mr. Scrutton deal with that conundrum? He’s glad you asked.

On the flip side, if I have no reason to believe you are armed then I have little reason to carry a gun either, especially knowing that our court system goes much harder on gun crime than non gun crime. Yes, unfortunately you’re likely to still get mugged but all you’re going to lose is your wallet, not your life.

Most police officers will tell you when being robbed, do as the perpetrator instructs, don’t make eye contact and try to get as much detailed information as you can regarding height, weight, blah blah blah. Resisting and fighting back is always a last resort.

And what does one do as a last resort? Mr. Scrutton doesn’t say. Which is the crux of the issue. It’s all well and good to suggest (however nonsensically) that not carrying a gun reduces your chances of needing a gun, but what happens if you do?

Perhaps Mr. Scrutton should read his own words re: seat belts. Meanwhile . . .

I for one am happy to live in a place where I don’t feel the need to carry a gun to feel safe and I’m even happier that our criminals don’t often feel the need to carry guns to feel safe either …and I’m also glad that Wawra wasn’t able to shoot what was likely just two stupid or innocent people who probably just had a couple beers in them, hyped up about a annual, citywide party.

Funny thing is, the ex-cop didn’t shoot. Because A) he didn’t have a gun (point to Canada?) and B) he didn’t need to. Which reminds me . . .

My housekeeper has an attractive granddaughter. She was walking through downtown Providence with her boyfriend after going to an under-18’s club. Five youths started following them. One of them asked her boyfriend if he’d like to watch while they raped her—after they beat the shit of out him.

The couple started walking faster. So did their pursuers. They rounded a corner and chanced upon a cop car.

I wonder if this sort of thing happens in Canada.

Recommended For You

66 Responses to Andrew Scrutton: American Gun Owners are Paranoid

  1. Wow. I guess that when a Canadian bad guy intends to do something bad to a good guy, he goes through mental gymnastics that would challenge Hamlet. The kind of BG who says to himself, “I’m not using a gun because it would be an unfair advantage over the good guy because he’s not carrying a gun but if he carries a gun then I’m going to use a gun but I don’t know whether or not he’s carrying so what shall I do? What shall I do?”

    But in the US, our bad guys just kill the good guy, or stomp the crap out of him, or rape her. So what I want to know is, can the US trade some of it’s sh!tty bad guys for some of them classy Canadian bad guys? We’ll throw in a couple of guns as a sweetener.

    What the US really needs isn’t gun control, it’s a better class of criminals.

    • “What the US really needs isn’t gun control, it’s a better class of criminals.”

      Now the whole department thinks I’ve lost it (due to the maniacal laughter). Thanks Ralph.

    • “What the US really needs isn’t gun control, it’s a better class of criminals.”

      @Ralph, that is genius and funny.

      Ralph for Commonwealth of MA Attorney General!

      • Ralph for Commonwealth of MA Attorney General? If nominated, I shall not run. If elected, I shall not serve. If paid, I shall pocket the cash and buy some nice guns.

        • I was just hoping you would “revamp” the so-called AG’s “approved firearms” list. Then you could press “shall-issue” requirements on all of the recalcitrant Chiefs of Police, then you could go to lunch, and then retire in the afternoon– on a full pension!

    • What the US really needs isn’t gun control, it’s a better class of criminals.

      And the Joker’s going to give them to us, you’ll see!

    • That’s the way I heard things used to be in merry old England, until some time in the 60’s. The criminals and bobbies worked out an agreement, and practiced their respective trades on a gentlemanly, mutually unarmed basis. If someone broke the rules and used a gun in a crime, the underworld would help the police track down the offender, to preserve that agreement.
      Things are not like that now.

  2. Ohh, so criminals don’t WANT to shoot their victims, their victims are FORCING them to do it with sudden movements.

    I don’t listen to people with a victim’s mentality. They are saying that the life of a criminal threatening their life is worth more than theirs–it is not. They are embracing death and shunning life because they refuse to acknowledge that evil exists.

  3. Clint Smith already owned this post…

    “If you carry a gun, people will call you paranoid. That’s ridiculous. If I have a gun, what in the hell do I have to be paranoid about?”

  4. the old “if you don’t carry a gun the crook, who is obviously faster, stronger, smarter and better prepared than you, won’t have to kill you argument”. As i’ve stated before i worked in a state prison for a year(yee-uck). 1 of the inmates there was doing 25 to life for killing an elderly unarmed liqour store clerk. inmate who had already served 10 years when i met him was still angry at the victim. it was all the victems fault,”if he had moved faster and done what i told him when i told him i wouldn.t have had to kill him” is almost a word for word qoute from the inmate. being unarmed and complying with the bad guy gives him the choice of whether or not you die. i don’t want some power tripping crackhead making those decisions for me.

    • Sounds similar to a complaint I heard about 2 guys who “beat somebody up” and robbed him of the $3 he had on him. They each got a year in jail.
      Unfair!!!
      They only got $3.

  5. Yawn…. ‘nother non-American who doesn’t have a clue about the right to self defense talking out of his butt.

  6. Wow, Canada must have the nicest criminals in the world according to this bozo. So thoughtful and caring, trying to avoid harming the victim at all costs.

    Gee mister, do you think it’s ok for me to rob you, I mean, I don’t really want to but I need the money, so if you could be so kind as to allow me to take your money, I’ll be on my way and not bother you anymore. And please stay calm and don’t move, because if I see movement it will be rude on your part and will give me an excuse to use my weapon, which obviously I don’t want to use, because then you’ll be very inconvenienced with all the hospital visits and all.

    You see, you don’t really need a gun for protection after all. Yeah, I’m sure that’s how these thugs operate.

  7. ” Canadian police services reported just over 8,100 victims of violent gun crime, ranging from assault to robbery and homicide, accounting for 2.4% of all victims of violence. Handguns made up nearly two-thirds of all firearms used.

    Violent crimes were more often committed with other types of weapons than guns. Knives accounted for 6.2% of violent victimizations and clubs or other blunt instruments were used against 3.0% of victims.

    Police-reported data showed that among young people, the use of guns in violent crime is increasing. The rate of youth aged 12 to 17 accused of a firearm-related offence has risen in three of the past four years, increasing 32% since 2002. The overall firearm-related crime rates for youth were driven primarily by robberies. ”

    From – Study: Firearms and violent crime at : http://www.statcan.gc.ca/daily-quotidien/080220/dq080220b-eng.htm

  8. “a lot of gun owner who carry are over-confident. This reduces their situational awareness and leads to strategic mistakes”
    — I’ve wondered about that too. Thanks for the insight from the guru.

    “One of them asked her boyfriend if he’d like to watch while they raped her—after they beat the shit of out him”
    — Canada’s culture and society is not (yet) as diverse, bad, and dangerous as America’s. Real or perceived, there are lots of feelings (based on race, ethnicity, religion sex, etc) in America of anger, victim-hood, entitlement, injustice, and a disregard for the teachings of traditional ethics, morals, and personal accountability. Politicians and others on the Left, to get the political change they want, have gone way too far fanning the flames in the cultural war. Ideas have beget words and feelings that have beget violence.

    • “One of them asked her boyfriend if he’d like to watch while they raped her”

      American rapists are rude. Canadian rapists are so polite, they would bring the boyfriend a comfortable folding chair.

  9. “I want to start by saying that this submission is in no way meant to be a holier than thou, we’re better than you, kind of thing,”

    Of course not. But he fails to realize not everyone thinks the same way he does.

  10. “…for the security of a free state the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” For my, your, our, the group, the state of____, the USA, security.

    Bad guy acts. A Good persons defends self and others. To do otherwise is not rational.

    Nous Defions

  11. Officer Scrutton,
    Possession of a firearm, whether concealed or otherwise, is not just for protection against criminal predators or to put meat on the table. In recent years our increasingly bloated, over-bearing, federal bureaucracies have been arming themselves at an alarming rate. Many of these organizations can show no rational reason for purchasing and distributing large amounts of firearms and ammunition. The most recent request for bid, for thousands of rounds of .40 S&W ammunition, is currently being undertaken by our National Weather Service. (See FedBizOpps.gov) When such behavior occurs under the leadership of a Marxist administration, is it any wonder that our civilians feel the need to exercise their second-amendment rights?

    • 46k rounds is a trivial amount for a tiny organization practicing infrequently.

      Given that the majority of the 10-odd billion rounds of ammo sold every year goes to private citizens, I would worry much less about how much ammo relatively insignificant government organizations have, and more concerned with the executive abuses of the Marxist in question.

    • National Weather Service is a subdivision under NOAA. But you know who else is? NOAA Fisheries Enforcement cops. So the ammo is for the wildlife and fisheries guys.

      I sometimes put on the tinfoil hat, but this isn’t a case for it.

  12. Canada gets to sit on it’s arse and act noble only because of the covering that their courageous neighbor to the south provides. If it weren’t for the protection of the U.S. military through the years, they would all be speaking German, Japanese, or other. I would prefer they just said, “Thank You”, and then shut up, play hockey, and drink crappy beer.
    No offense eh’

    • There were plenty of Canadians who served on the front lines of World War II and there are a fair number of RCAF providing air support for NORAD.

      Let’s not drag tired trope into this, at least with Canada. Of all of the presumed blood-sucking western democracies sleeping safely at night due to the largess of the American taxpayer, Canada is one of the least offensive of the bunch.

    • Yes…what Joshua Dale said. The Canuks have been shoulder to shoulder with us in way too many battles for this crap. Read your history!!!!

    • I have had the pleasure of working with both the Canadian Forces and their intelligence services and I can affirm that Canadians are better allies than the Brits and Canada punches way above their weight. I do wish that they would acknowledge that we filter out a lot of crime from illegal immigrants before they reach the Northern border.

  13. Carrying a concealed fire arm is simply a false sense of security.

    Only if you’re terrified of the thing, and one suspects, many other things besides. Project much?

    This man has never been exposed to a violent criminal with zero regard for his life. For his sake, one hopes he never does. Personally, I’d rather be prepared for such a situation and be able to be effective in said situation, rather than crawl into a corner, soil myself, and hope for the best.

  14. The only difference between Canadian criminals and American criminals is that, by law, Canadian criminals have to give orders in both French and English when they are telling you to give them your motherf**king wallet.

  15. Yes, unfortunately you’re likely to still get mugged but all you’re going to lose is your wallet, not your life.

    So instead of considering yourselves independent citizens, we assume the position of prey? Is that your massage? Unarmed Americans have been killed during muggings because they didn’t have the amount of money the robber had expected. If you want your population to suffer an explosion in violent crime, including home invasions Mr. Scrutton then, please, without hesitation, continue your propaganda campaign. I think if you had any common sense you would realize that Americans are cautious, prepared and aware, not paranoid.

    And on a personal note, keep you side of the gun debate on your side of the boarder. American guns and military have helped keep your quality of life artificially higher than it should have been by keeping your defense costs ridiculously low. I neither care for nor respect you “opinion”.

  16. Paranoid? Let us not forget that 70 years ago, in the heart of western civilization, armed agents of the state went door to door, rounded up people numbering in the millions, herded them on to cattle cars and transported them to unspeakable torture and death.

    You want a more recent example? 8000 men and boys were massacred in 1995 in Srebrenica while under the direct protection of the United Nations in a supposed “safe zone”.

    Oh, but it can’t happen here…

  17. Of course this Canadian doesn’t understand. His country didn’t revolt. Canada didn’t insist on independence. (We gave them a strong suggestion to join us at times, but it didn’t work.) Fine. They made their choice. We’ve made ours. That’s what it comes down to.

    I support the right of people like this man to comment. I’m even willing for my country to support people around the world who are trying to throw out their dictators. But ultimately, the decision about a country’s culture belongs to its own people. This author, like many others, may feel free to shake their heads and feel superior. We’ll continue as we are.

  18. I completely agree about the executive abuses perpetrated by the federal government. I fail to understand, however, just how 46,000 rounds of .40 S&W makes NOAA employees better weather prognosticators. Why are federal government weather personnel being armed and trained?

  19. “I want to start by saying that this submission is in no way meant to be a holier than thou, we’re better than you, kind of thing,”

    Why is it that every time a Canadian says something like this, you know that’s exactly what’s coming.

    • People who subconsciously know they’re about to say exactly the kind of filth they intend will always put that hollow little disclaimer. How many times have we heard, “I support the second amendment, but..” followed by an incredibly anti-2A screed.

  20. I really still have no idea why we care about foreigners’ views on gun control. It’s like caring about what China has to say about human rights, or what Mexico has to say about effective gang control.

    I’d say it’s a nationality thing, seeing as someone who grew up in a polite tyranny like Canada or any given Euro country would be indoctrinated to be afraid of and hostile towards certain elements of our Constitution. But I don’t think it is. Plenty of foreigners come to the US and appreciate the Constitution, including the 2A, many even moreso than millions of native-born Americans. And many of those latter native-born Americans are more anti-Constituion and hostile towards liberty-minded ideals than Stalin on a good day.

    It’s true that how one was raised and his environment certainly contributes to his world outlook. But in the end, people are people, and the ratios of decent, moral people to cowardly, mentally and emotionally deficient, wannabe-tyrants is likely not that disparate around the world.

    I always have to laugh when some moron points to guns as that which invokes “might makes right.” Really? So before the “great equalizer,” back in the middle ages and before, might didn’t make right?

    Scrutton is free to live in his brainwashed, idealized fantasyworld all he wants. Not like he has a choice. Me, I’ll take facts, logic, and personal responsibility.

  21. And at every point in his letter, he makes it clear that he, and Canada in general, is a sniveling coward. Sure, Canada has a couple of guns, but every time the government wants to confiscate a few more of them they bow their heads and say “Yes, master”. Remember, the Canadian Cowards (sounds like a sports team) are still technically ruled by a foreign power that, despite the fact that they have virtually no military power anymore, Canadians are still too scared to fight off.

  22. NOAA controls fisheries enforcement? Wow! Is there any bureaucracy in this gov’t that doesn’t have an armed police unit?

  23. Considering how States/governments have executed over 100 million of their own citizens in the last 100 years or so … um, yeah, I would say that I am paranoid and rightly so.

  24. Well, I am walking down the road in the Canadian and a black bear sees me as a threat to here 2 young cubs along the road. Almost all of Ontario as an example is bush between very small towns. You may just have had a flat tire or may be walking to the local swimming hole or your snowmobile broke down. Would it be paranoid to have a 44 mag on you. Of course those bears are completely unarmed so you should have no fear. Then there are wolves which have been known to attack people in packs. These predators are unpredictable just as human predators are unpredictable. Now Mr Canadian check your violent crime rate compared to ours. End of story.

    • He did check and it is better in Canada than in the US. Same for murders and just about anything else you can think you are right about.

      The statistics are out for Canada and we are at a 40 year low for all crimes.

      Could we be safer? Yes. Do I like guns? YUP!!! Would I like the option for CCW? Damn right.

      But here is the issue. Canada has not needed total proliferation like in the US. We also do indeed have a near parity on guns to people, regardless of what the claim is in wikipedia. Most of them are long guns. We have not had pistol allowances in Canada for a VERY VERY long time. We have also grown to the degree to not seem to need it. Because of this, the idea is not in peoples heads.

      • Jason:
        Canada is demographicaly different than the US. You don’t have the gang problems, although you are starting down that road, or hoards of illegal immigrants to pump up your crime rates. Before the mid 1970s Canadians had lots of handguns and yet your murder rates were still much lower than in the States. Where the US looks like Canada our crime rates are at least as good as yours. I live in Arlington Virginia, a community of 210000 people next to Washington DC. We have our shares of gangs, including the notorious MS-13, Two weeks ago we had our first murder in 24 months, that is a murder rate of .25 per 100,000 people over the period. We don’t have a lot of violent crime despite having very high gun ownership rates and above average per capita concealed carry permits issued.. Most of our crime is against property and it seldom happens when people are home. I think Arlington’s crime rate compares favorably to a place like Regina except we are next to the city with the worst total violent crime rate in the country.

        Just remember demogrpahics are destiny. We would have to match your demographics to match your murder rate. I don’t see us changing the inner city gang culture that drives are high murder rate anytime in the future. If Obama is relected on the strength of hooking an ever increasing number of people on welfare it very likely that the rest of our country will begin to resemble the south and west sides of Chicago.

  25. My dad was a pre-war regular Army guy. His favorite movie was “From Here to Eternity.” Boxing plays a major role in the story. When I first saw the movie I asked my him if he boxed in the Army. He told me “Hell no, why would you want to get into a fair fight?” Constable Scrutton, and not a few Americans, seem to believe criminals only pick fair fights. Maybe they do in Canada being so polite and all but in the States you get selected by a mugger because he things you are an easy mark. He wouldn’t go after you if he thought you were armed. Like my father’s attitude about boxing, criminals don’t want a fair fight. They want an advantage. They will not gun up just so they can rob someone with a gun.

    The good constable also argues that people who carry a gun are paranoid and fearful, again an opinion shared by our domestic gun grabbers like Mr. Bonomo.
    Does that mean that I am afraid of getting hurt because I carry a first aid kit with me most of the time?
    Am I afraid of a car accident because I carry a Swiss Army rescue tool in my car?
    Am I afraid of breaking down because I carry tools in my car along with two leatherman?
    Am I afraid of a hurricane, tornado or blizzard because I keep a two week supply of canned goods in the house at all times?
    Most normal people would call hedging against a possible bad event. Most people carry a gun for the same reasons. It isn’t fear driven (unless you live in the wrong part of town), it’s just insurance.

  26. ” We enjoy visiting your great country as often as we can. Some of y’all just confuse me sometimes though”

    The stupid are easily confused.

  27. Just a few thoughts..

    1. Canadians are, generally speaking, pretty polite folks. Criminals are included in that – and crime in the great white north is indeed less than it is in the US – and I suspect that my first statement probably factors into that, to varying degrees.

    2. Canada became a country.. well, sort of.. by asking to be ‘out in the big wide world, all on its own’.. so the queen said, “well… let’s try you moving out of the house first, and I’ll pick someone to chaperone.” There was no forceful fight for independence as per the USA’s declaration of independence from Great Britain. That alone made for a much different perspective – in Canada, firearms are for hunting, and those evil black rifles are for assaulting and killing human beings.. we don’t need those, here, just like we don’t need handguns. Grampa’s 30-06 is enough to take care of those pesky brown bears that wander down once in a while, and the .22 in the back of Uncle’s pickup truck should be good enough to handle rabbits eating the carrots in the garden.

    That all said? There’s a key point I rarely see made in these sorts of discussions: People who wish to carry firearms do so because that is their choice. While yes, I’ve seen a lot of 2nd Amendment supporters have less than polite attitudes towards those who indicate that they may not wish to do the same, generally, I’ve yet to see any 2A peeps push others into carrying. It’s a personal thing. Oddly enough, I DO see a lot of the people on the other side of that argument insisting that NO-ONE should be allowed to have firearms.

    Personally, I disagree with that.

    Now here’s where y’all are probably thinking.. Yeah.. this is another one of those gun-nuts from down south.. And you’d be partly right. I live in Ohio. I’m an American Citizen.

    What you’d be wrong about, however… is that I was born in Canada. Grew up there. I have family there still. I was an officer in the Canadian Military, and carried a weapon on a daily basis when deployed.

    So, you see… I do see both sides of it. I suggest that if you want to carry – like I personally do – then FANTASTIC! I’m glad that you have the faith of your convictions, and choose to exercise your second amendment rights, as I do.

    On the other side, if you don’t want to carry – then FANTASTIC! I’m glad that you have the faith of your convictions, and choose to NOT exercise your second amendment rights, and I’m not about to force you to do something you aren’t comfortable with. If you aren’t comfortable with weapons? No problem. I’m the sort who believes that it’s my duty to protect myself.. as well as those who are incapable of doing so for themselves.

    However.. please don’t try to revoke my ability to protect myself; I will not go peacefully into that night.

    To each their own. I won’t force you to share my beliefs, neither will I permit you to force me to share yours. Fair is fair, after all. 🙂

  28. the funny part is people who claim guns cannot be used for personal defense rely on people with guns to defend them (the police) It makes no sense if guns cant be used how can police protect you? ESPECIALLY when they dont arrive on scene untuil well after the crime is over usually. anti gunners position is ‘oh well we have to be victims to be noble”.. to hell with that. daddy gonna pack some heat!

  29. Get Estimates – After making a report on several reputed moving agencies,
    get estimates from them. It would seemingly
    take time, settling in as being a family inside
    new settings. These packers and movers companies also provide services for international relocations.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *