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Promised reforms to extreme firearm restrictions in the Australian state of Tasmania appear to have stalled. In the March, 2018 general election, the ruling Tasmanian government had promised some common sense reforms to their extreme gun laws. The Liberal Party in Australia is a center right party.

Here is a summation of reforms promised by the Liberal Tasmanian government:

  • Establish the Tasmanian Firearms Owners Council made up of firearms owners and other stakeholders.
  • Improve the interaction between Firearms Services and firearms owners – and higher service levels. Includes a digital platform where every Tasmanian firearms owner can manage their license and registration requirements, and a promise to end delays and waiting times for licensing and permits.
  • Establishing a new Tasmanian competition shooting range to be available to all shooting clubs in Tasmania.
  • Broader firearms training and testing provisions ending the monopoly on training and testing that now exists. There are only 3 firearms testers for all of Tasmania, creating severe delays.
  • Extend periods of licenses doubling the term of A and B licenses to 10 years, and C licenses for two years.
  • Infringement notices for minor storage offenses this allows for an infringement notice, rather like a traffic ticket, instead of summons to court as a crime.
  • Finalize an MOU between the Government, Tasmania Police and the Tasmanian Farmers and Graziers Association (TFGA).

The reforms included increased access, by shooters certified to control agricultural pests, to tightly controlled semi-automatic rifles and to silencers. Agricultural pests in Tasmania include feral pigs, exotic deer, European rabbits, and kangaroos. They do enormous damage to Tasmanian crops.

The limited network of government test examiners would be expanded with private contractors to reduce the large backlog of license applications.

These reforms were brought up in the March election. The anti-gun left railed against the reforms, resorting to raw emotion. They said the reforms were a slap in the face of Port Arthur massacre survivors.

The Liberals won the election, holding on to an absolute majority. The Liberals had promised, repeatedly, they would pass the reforms. Now they seem to be backing away from that promise.


The State Government’s proposed changes to gun laws were revealed by the media on the eve of the March state election and sparked condemnation from those who survived the 1996 Port Arthur Massacre.

After months of defending the policy, on Friday Premier Will Hodgman and Police Minister Michael Ferguson announced the Government was dropping the policy.

“We will not pursue the policy proposals that we have previously put forward,” Mr Hodgman said.

In response to the announcement, the Legislative Council inquiry set up to investigate into firearms law reform, which had received 121 submissions, was cancelled.

But on Wednesday afternoon Police Minister Michael Ferguson announced the inquiry would instead be moved to the House of Assembly.

“As we said last week, we will not be progressing the previously announced firearms law proposals until consideration of any recommendations from a parliamentary inquiry,” he said.

Mr Hodgman’s decision was welcomed by the Tasmanian Farmers and Grazers Association (TFGA), who were surprised by the policy backdown.

It does not look good for the reforms. In Australia, as in the United States, the dominant media is rabidly anti-gun. The media were the major force that pushed the extreme gun laws through in 1996 after Port Arthur. Australia does not have equivalent counters to that dominant message such as the Fox News Channel or a Rush Limbaugh.

The Englishman’s right to arms was viable in 1901, when the Australian Constitution was adopted, but it was not explicitly mentioned. Australia doesn’t have a Second Amendment. British law has written the Englishman’s right to arms into a nullity from 1920 to 2018.

Australian’s attempts to reform their extreme gun control laws have had some successes. But the slightest attempt at reform is always met with opposition from the gun control lobby in academia and in the media. In this case, the Tasmanian government appears to have caved to that pressure.


©2018 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

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  1. No surprise here. Australia is on the fast track to full tyranny. Between their gun laws, vaccine laws, lack of free speech laws, etc, the land down under swirls down the drain.

  2. Sounds like Republicans whenever they are running for election talking about the border wall, gun rights, and Obamacare.

    All a bunch of phonies, liars, and malcontents. There’s a special place in Hell for all of you.

  3. Not shocking at all, Canada/Australia/United Kingdom/New Zealand are basically are into gun confiscation/massive firearms restrictions full-time.
    What still amazes me is how easy it is to buy a suppressor in parts of Europe, while the firearm itself is verboten.

    • Never was a “Right” there just a privilege that has to be requested from the state and as such no one will do any serious fighting for it. Most gun owners I have met/worked with in New Zealand and Australia never really knew what they gave up/lost.

  4. Okie
    Not sure why you include NZ?
    Semi auto and silencers are legal without a permit. The only licence is for hand guns or military rifles like the M16 but none for AR15

    • Not all semi-autos, anything that has all the fun stuff attached (folding/adjustable stock, mag over 10 rounds, pistol grip etc) we take for granted here require a E class license.

  5. Gun owners in Taz. need to learn to *lean* on their elected officials.

    Make clear to them what will happen to your vote if you fail to represent them.

    It may take letting them getting them kicked out of office for an election cycle or two until they understand you are serious about your rights…

    • Tasmanians had to choose between “bad” and “worse”. They chose “bad” in the hope that it would be better than “worse”. Kind of like us in November, 2016.

      • yep and because of the “2 party preferred” system we have most people are not willing to vote for any of those that are actual opposition to the major parties. This makes it very difficult for any parties that want to make real change towards liberty to get in. Dont forget that it was under a liberal govt that we got the NFA. None of them are our friends no matter what they promise before elections. This is why for almost 30 years I have said that there is only one way we will get liberty back but most despite being virtual slaves (debt and taxes) are still too comfortable and brainwashed to consider that an option.

    • A lesson learned in New South Wales 30 years ago. Don’t trust political promises. A politician can backflip faster than a circus acrobat.

      How do you know a politician is lying? Their lips are moving.

      And gun control Australia, which numbers little more than a dozen to a score, has agents of influence throughout the media ready for their next soundbite.

  6. Tasmania, marsupials, cool. I like marsupials.

  7. With all the havoc the predators and varmints are now wreaking on crops etc, Aussies won’t have to worry about homicides. Instead, they will starve. But Howard and company knew this all along but shoved their treason down their fellow citizens’ (oops, subjects) throats at full tilt. If that isn’t spitting on all those dead veterans and their loved ones Idk what is.

      • I am in no way putting down the American effort and sacrifice in the pacific conflict in WWII, it was needed and we (at least those of us who value liberty) grateful. However there were a few places where Australians won the day (mostly volunteers rather than the regs) that American commanders way well have withdrawn their troops due to losses. Kokoda trail is one such. I’ll also add that is a reflection on the commanders rather than the troops themselves. Most volunteers in the Australian army have also historically largely been from the bush rather than the towns. Most of them have also been a pretty unruly bunch as much like to shoot commanding officers trying to force them into actions that will just get them killed with no tangible benefit as to shoot the enemy. Often after putting the officer in question out of the mix they then go on to take the position in their own way with less lives lost. Sadly there are few of this type of Australians left, much as there are few Americans left of the caliber that fought in WWI and WWII

  8. Coming soon to a neighborhood near you gun owners. Confiscation and a ridiculous amount of laws to be able to own a weapon. Never mind that the crime rate is spiking, at least they don’t have mass shootings. Hope that makes you anti gun folks all feel better.

    • yes and they have been for decades. It is just that they are now ramping up their message that more people are starting to notice. Many of the shows that many enjoyed even back into the 60’s and 70’s had subtle socialist messages in them. maybe just a phrase here and there, but there none the less. Now it is quite out in the open with their seditious and treasonous agenda as there are many that have been brainwashed. part of the early agenda was about going to school and university and that you wont get anywhere in life unless you do that. those places are where the real brainwashing goes on as the left have always known that taking the kids and teaching them while they are impressionable is how you most effectively subvert a nation. Karl Marx and a few other leftist writers all talked about that and Hitler also put the education system to good use in that regard

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