Even as the U.S. Senate contemplates legislation to lengthen the amount of time that the federal government maintains records of gun purchases, Canada is set to eliminate its Long-Gun Registry. “Canadian taxpayers have shelled out $2 billion and counting to hassle hunters, farmers and sport shooters with registration requirements,” the bill’s backer, MP Candice Hoeppner pronounced. “While receiving nothing in return in crime reduction or prevention . . . This money could have gone toward front-line police officers, or for programs to help our at-risk kids.” A bad idea, then. But how many times have you heard of a federal government getting rid of program that doesn’t work? I mean, can you imagine a world where politicians vote to remove bureaucracy? Obviously, in Canada’s case, it’s an American plot (reported by lakelandtimes.com). . .
“There is a well-funded, U.S. inspired campaign to misrepresent the facts,” [president of the Coalition for Gun Control Wendy] Cukier said. “Millions have been spent on targeted campaigns and strategies. Reports were withheld until after the registry vote. The opponents continue to invoke the costs of the registry, but the RCMP (Royal Canadian Mounted Police) have stated clearly that dismantling the registration of rifles and shotguns will at most save $3 million a year, less than the cost of a complex murder investigation.”
Organizations supporting the law include the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police, the Canadian Police Association, the Canadian Association of Police Boards, the Canadian Association of Emergency Physicians, the YWCA Canada, the Canadian Federation of University Women, the Canadian Association for Adolescent Health, le Barreau du Québec, la Fédération des femmes du Québec, the G-13 consortium of 13 national women’s groups.
The YMCA? Anyway, it’s one of those rational stats on one side . . .
There are nearly 7 million registered long guns in Canada, the Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics reports. Yet, the public safety department adds, of 2,441 homicides recorded in Canada since mandatory long-gun registration was introduced in 2003, fewer than 2 percent (47) were committed with rifles and shotguns known to have been registered.
If “one life is saved” on the other . . .
Rifles and shotguns make up a substantial proportion of the guns recovered in crime in this country. They are the guns most often used to kill police officers, in domestic violence situations and in suicides, particularly those involving youths.
The bill—which would not affect Canadian licensing provisions—gets its third and final reading in the Senate later this year. Watch this space.