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Posted: 4/18/2006 1:07:40 PM EST
Surely we can pay for a tool police consider vital, says Linda McQuaig


Apr. 16, 2006. 01:00 AM
LINDA MCQUAIG


There's a curious inconsistency in the credo of those — including Stephen Harper — who want to crack down on crime.

While they're keen to increase jail times — a keenness likely to increase in the wake of last week's biker killings — Harper and other anti-crime hardliners are also keen to take away an indispensable crime-fighting tool in the arsenal of police: the gun registry.

The Harper government is proceeding with plans to dismantle the gun registry, over the objections of the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police.

It's not surprising that police strongly support the registry. Police officers find it extremely useful to know in advance whether there's a gun in a place they're investigating. Police use the registry more than 5,000 times a day, according to the Canadian Professional Police Association.

It's astonishing that Harper would deprive the police of a tool they say helps them deal with dangerous situations.

Some critics argue that the registry needlessly imposes a burden on law-abiding owners of rifles and shotguns.

But, in the wrong hands, rifles and shotguns can be extremely dangerous.

They are the weapon of choice in domestic violence and are used in half of all shootings of police officers, notes Wendy Cukier, who teaches justice studies at Ryerson University.

Licensing gun owners and registering guns help prevent weapons falling into the wrong hands.

The system allows guns to be traced back to their owners, so owners are inclined to store guns more carefully and to refuse to sell them to unlicensed individuals.

The burden is hardly onerous; no more than obtaining a driver's licence and registering a car.

We have no trouble seeing that a car can pose a significant risk to the public, so the privilege of driving is accompanied by certain responsibilities.

Guns are, if anything, more dangerous. While cars can kill, that's not what they're designed to do.

If the inconvenience of registration is too great, there's always the option of not owning a gun, just as there's always the option of not owning a motor vehicle.

The gun lobby has managed to distort the public debate on this important subject by keeping public attention focused exclusively on the Liberal government's cost overruns in setting up the $1 billion program (registering 2 million gun owners and 7 million guns).

Regrettable as those inflated costs were, that money has already been spent and nothing will bring it back, certainly not cancelling the registry.

Furthermore, the ongoing costs of operating the registry are only $15 million a year.

If licensing and screening costs for gun ownership are added in, the total comes to $80 million a year — less than the annual cost of running the passport office.

Surely we as a country can afford $80 million a year to provide police with a tool they consider vital for fighting crime, and protecting themselves and the public.

If that's obvious to me, why isn't it obvious to a government that purports to take crime seriously?


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Linda McQuaig is a Toronto-based author and commentator. lmcquaig@sympatico.ca.


Link Posted: 4/18/2006 1:16:09 PM EST
That entire article is just bullshit.
Link Posted: 4/18/2006 1:42:35 PM EST
"They are the weapon of choice in domestic violence and are used in half of all shootings of police officers, notes Wendy Cukier, who teaches justice studies at Ryerson University."

Now that they've made handgun ownership damn near impossible, they start in on everything that's left.

Fuckers.
Link Posted: 4/18/2006 1:45:28 PM EST
Wish we could import those Polytech M14s they're getting for $300-400. I'd be all over those since they don't want them.
Link Posted: 4/18/2006 1:46:19 PM EST
[Last Edit: 4/18/2006 1:46:50 PM EST by ramy98]
Apparently the Auditor General is going to release a report next month about all the cost over runs and government waste within the CFC for running the registry... Its not going to be pretty thats for sure. Hopefully this will be the final nail on the coffin for this useless registry...

Link Posted: 4/18/2006 1:51:14 PM EST
it's a good thing that somethign like that could never happen in this country...



the equation of registering a gun and registering a car does not work. you register a car in order to gain permission to operate it on a public street. you do not need to register, tag, or even properly maintain a car if you do not intend to take it on a public street. this lady is a moron plain and simple, and her "the ends justify the means" argument is weak as presented, and falls appart under any kind of scrutiny
Link Posted: 4/18/2006 2:08:51 PM EST
The American 4873 (or whatever the number) form is effectively registration. Of course, ftf sales and homemades aren't subject to the FFL process, but the vast majority of firearms purchases are.

As far as the Canadian registery goes, Stephen Harper had better keep his promise, or the CPC won't be forming a majority government, ever.
Link Posted: 4/18/2006 2:20:25 PM EST
where does this pissant college professor or reporter (wutever she is) get off saying this crap? 10 bucks says she has never even handled a gun

In Canada in order to buy a gun you have to be 1) 18 2) pay $80 for a Possession and Aquisition Licence (PAL) 3) the seller has to have a PAL as well (Legally that is)

Under the liberal government which has since passed they wanted to eventually take all our guns and force us to lock them up in a weapon storage facility where if we wanted them we would have to travel to the facility, fill out a shitload of paper work, and then be approved to take them out.

As for stopping crime, it will never work. after all how many criminals are going to register thier guns? so all they are doing is to find out who the honest law abiding citizens are that own guns. Its not going to stop crime, its just placing yet another financial burden on the taxpayers

just my two cents worth but this is one of the things that angers me most about our government in Canada
Link Posted: 4/18/2006 2:28:02 PM EST
[Last Edit: 4/18/2006 2:31:42 PM EST by nightstalker]

government's cost overruns in setting up the $1 billion program (registering 2 million gun owners and 7 million guns).

Regrettable as those inflated costs were, that money has already been spent and nothing will bring it back, certainly not cancelling the registry."



If we had your guns you sure as hell wouldn't be getting them back. The bad news is that the registry WAS cancelled by sheer lack of participation (about 30%).
Link Posted: 4/18/2006 2:31:00 PM EST
[Last Edit: 4/18/2006 2:31:19 PM EST by Will-Rogers]
Before they are born, God gives little babies a choice: they can have a rational mind or they can a uterus.
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