Anti-Anti-Gun Post

It felt like a very bad time to be firing a gun.

Not long after the horrific mass shooting in Buffalo, and an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, a local gun store invited the media to drop by on Saturday, June 4th, to shoot at some targets, as a part of National Range Day.

A newspaper reporter accepted the offer.  After getting a safety talk, he entered the range and fired nine rounds from a 9mm handgun.  His hands were shaky, and his aim was poor.  The manager made it perfectly clear that the gun culture and laws in the United States are completely different in Canada.  He told a personal story to illustrate the point.

Years ago, when he wasn’t in the gun business, he and some of his clients went to a Florida restaurant with a no-gun rule.  “So, just like your coat-checks up here, they had a gun-check at the restaurant.  My clients opened up their jackets, got their guns out, got their little chit for the gun-check, and the lady said to me, “Sir, you need to check your gun in.”

I said, “I’m not carrying” and she looked at me and said, “Come on sir, you need to check your gun.”  I said, “Honestly, I’m not carrying.”  She looked around and said, “You’re not carrying?”  I opened my jacket and said, “I’m from Canada.  We don’t do this up there”  And she couldn’t believe it!

Friends in Michigan have told him they can’t understand why he doesn’t carry a gun.  I said, ‘Here’s the difference.  Where I come from, we had six homicides last year.  They were all targeted, either gang-related, or domestic.”  They said, “That happened in Detroit yesterday.”  That’s the big difference.

In some states, almost everyone can buy a gun immediately.  This is not the case in Canada.  You’ll have to wait six to eight months.  You must take a 16 hour safety course, provide references, and be vetted by the RCMP.  It involves answering some intrusive and serious questions.  Have you been on medication in the last five years for depression?  Have you had a job loss, or a divorce?

Any red flag means No Gun!  If you do get one, it can only be used for hunting or target shooting.  Automated background checks are run on gun owners once a day.  We have to recognize that we are a different country than the United States.  We have a different gun culture and different processes.

He said, “Mass shootings in the US have nothing to do with Canada.  I refuse to be blamed for the actions of a madman.  It’s that simple.  There is no connection.

The Saturday event celebrated the lawful ownership of guns in Canada.  About 2.3 million Canadians are licensed to own a gun.  At the start of the COVID pandemic, the store was stampeded by people looking for guns.  “They felt like things were going to go bad – lockdowns were going to cause people to go crazy.”

Many were surprised they needed a licence and had to take a safety course, and pass a background check.  They said that they needed a gun immediately.  He told them, “If you are panicking, and the only thing that is driving you to buy a gun is panic – we need to have a longer conversation.  You don’t buy a gun out of panic, and you don’t buy a gun for self-defense.”

Many Canadian gun-control laws miss the mark.  Most guns used in crimes are smuggled across the border.  There is a serious problem at the border that needs to be solved.  Targeting businesses like his and their livelihood, and law-abiding customers, is not going to solve the problem of violent crime.

It was pleasant to see such a well-researched and thought-out article for a change, instead of the typical Chicken Little, The Sky Is Falling, Big Brother Save Us rants.

Canadian Gun Nuts

SHOOTINGS UP, AS TRUDEAU’S GUN BAN MISSES TARGET

When Justin Trudeau announced his massive gun ban, back on May 1, he told the country that he was doing it to tackle gun violence, and to make Canada safer.

“Every single Canadian wants to see less gun violence, and safer communities. So today, we take another big step forward.” Trudeau said.  “Enough is enough.  Banning these firearms will save Canadian lives.” Trudeau’s Public Safety Minister, Bill Blair stated emphatically.

TOO BAD IT ISN’T WORKING!  😯

Between May 1 and Sept. 6, shootings were up in Canada’s largest city.  So were the number of people killed by guns.  In total, between when Trudeau announced his ban and Labor Day weekend, Toronto saw 208 shootings with 92 people injured, and 14 people killed.  In that same time period for 2019, there were 185 shootings, 92 injured, and 12 people killed.

Did Trudeau forget to take aim at criminals, when trying to tackle the gun crime that is the real issue in many cities across Canada??

When Trudeau banned 1500 guns, or variations of rifles that he described as “military-grade assault weapons,” he wasn’t banning guns that are used in crime; he was banning guns used in hunting or at the gun range by licensed owners.

Since May 1, hundreds more firearms have been added to the banned list, even though they are shotguns or bolt-action rifles.  These are firearms that are used for hunting, not by criminals.  “Zero impact” is how Marcell Wilson summed up Trudeau’s gun ban on the gang violence plaguing our biggest cities.

Wilson should know; he used to be part of that world, smuggling guns and running his own organization.  Now he’s turned his life around and operates One By One, an organization that helps people get out of the gang life.

He said banning these rifles won’t stop the shootings, because gangs rarely – if ever – use them.  “Definitely handguns of small calibre in my day was ideal.  Easy to conceal and easy to throw away if need be.”  Wilson said.

Former Toronto Police Detective Mark Mendelson, who spent 14 years as a lead investigator on the city’s homicide squad, said he agrees with Wilson when it comes to Trudeau’s gun ban aiming at the wrong target.  “These are not the guns used in crimes that involve the gangs.  They’re running around with Glocks, Smith and Wessons, semiautomatic pistols.”

What Trudeau has banned were the guns with no history of crime in this country, claiming that it would stop the shootings.  The numbers show that is not the case.  Shootings are up 12.5% this summer compared to the same period in 2019, and 24% higher than what was recorded in 2018.  Compared to summer of 2015 – the summer just before Trudeau was elected – shootings are up 83% in Toronto.

This was never about keeping Canadians safe or reducing gun crime.  This was about Trudeau looking like he was taking strong action when he wasn’t.  Shootings have been up during his entire tenure in office, and he hasn’t been able to deal with it.

Gun crime is a very real issue in Canada, but the Federal Liberals seem to forget the crime part, and only focus on the gun part.  Tracking down criminals and getting them to hand over their guns is difficult.  Tracking down licensed gun owners is much easier.

The Government plans to spend more than $600 million – could be more than $1 Billion – to pay legal gun owners to hand over their now-banned rifles and shotguns.  Rather than spend this amount of money on something that has no chance of reducing gun crime, just a portion of it spent on groups like Wilson’s could go a long way towards dealing with the root problems.

C’mon Justin, it’s time to aim your efforts at the right target.

Flash Fiction #187

Stopped Cold

PHOTO PROMPT © Dale Rogerson

STOPPED COLD

Lenny and Squiggy weren’t their real names, but everyone called them that. Something about a 1970s TV program.

After their respective parents had finally booted them out, they couch-surfed together for a while. Someone suggested that they get a job…. Job??! Yeah, we could pull a job.

Lenny knew where the local gang had a betting parlor. It was simple. Wear ski-masks. Run in the front. Wave some toy guns. Grab all the cash they could carry, and run out the back. Everything went flawlessly – but why won’t the back door open?

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Click above to see their Brain Trust namesakes.

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Go to Rochelle’s Addicted to Purple site and use her Wednesday photo as a prompt to write a complete 100 word story.

Friday Fictioneers