Guns, Guns, Guns!

When the Prime Minister of Canada announced the immediate banning of 1,500 different types of assault weapons I was shocked. Did you know there were so many different types of guns?

I didn’t. I’ve never owned a gun, pistol, rifle or assault weapon. Don’t expect to ever need one.

I’m a city dweller (when I am in Canada anyway) and don’t hunt for recreation. I’ve never been in my house when it has been burgled, so didn’t need a gun to repel the invasion.That is probably a good thing, since the burglars would have gotten the guns if there had been any.

Unrestricted possession of firearms doesn’t make sense to me. I understand farmers can need guns to kill varmits threatening livestock. And if my hunter friends want to share some meat, I am first in line.

It seems logical that those with weapons pass licensing tests to make sure they know what they are doing. Also, I don’t see that anyone needs to be able to fire off hundreds of rounds a minute. Which means I’m not opposed to the ban, in theory anyway.

In practice I don’t see that it will make any difference.

The idea behind gun control is to reduce crime. But the government hasn’t explained how that works. (Nor has it explained how much compensation will be available to firearms owners whose legal guns are now illegal at the stroke of a government pen. We are told just to trust they will be fair. Did I sense your skepticism?)

I challenge the government to show how many crimes are committed in Canada each year by owners of legally registered guns. I doubt there are very many.

Getting  a gun legally in Canada is a lengthy procedure with multiple checks. It seems to me people willing to jump through the paperwork hoops are likely to be law-abiding.

The weapons used in last month’s mass murder in Nova Scotia are now banned. However they were illegally obtained, meaning that if the ban had been in force earlier it wouldn’t have made any difference.

The government will spin this as a crime-fighting move. Sadly, I don’t think it will do any good. While guns are sometimes used to kill people, they are just a tool. They can be used for good and evil.

What would you do if you had the power? Would you ban firearms? Tighten licensing? Increase education?

Would you address the social conditions that breed crime – poverty, intolerance, racism? What about the human heart? Isn’t crime related to sin? Can society talk seriously about sin, evil and its origins?

Or is it easier just to ban the guns?

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