Canada is following in liberal gun control dreamer footsteps and pushing forward ERPO style legislation that would add additional methods to remove firearms and confiscate licenses to acquire new ones. I’ll assume with even greater circumventions of anything resembling due process, as that is how ERPO’s operate nearly extrajudicially.
Three Conservative MPs clashed with Public Safety Minister Bill Blair Thursday over opposition claims that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau misled the Commons in an earlier question period bout over Liberal plans to bring in U.S.-styled “red flag” laws.
The legislation would open new avenues for citizens and abused women to access police or the courts for firearm seizures and license revocations in threatening situations.
The heated confrontation near the end of question period sparked Blair to suggest that Quebec Conservative MP Steven Blaney, a former public safety minister under the Harper government, was “unconscionable” after Blaney and the other Conservatives said existing law gives police, firearm officers and the courts plenty of grounds for gun seizures and licence revocations.
In short, liberals are saying there are “loopholes”, a favorite word meaning anything we don’t like but is legal, and conservative opposition is saying there are laws on the books to cover the situations described.
…Trudeau told the Conservatives a new regime is needed because although police have the ability to remove firearms from a gun owner who presents a threat to themselves or others, they “cannot suspend the licence and prevent the person from acquiring new firearms.”
“That is what the red flag law is all about,” Trudeau said, sparking a loud and angry response from Conservatives, who believe the existing law is adequate.
There, the declaration that no rule or law exists to cover situations in which probably a firearm should be seized and an individual’s right to their property must be suspended or permanently revoked.
It is unclear what Trudeau meant since sections in the federal Firearms Act and Criminal Code prescribe for police seizure of firearms as well as licence revocation in cases of gun threats or violence.
Hmmm. So that was lie.
Blaney, the second of the three Conservatives to go after Trudeau and Blair, claimed federal law is already clear: police can suspend firearms licences and prevent someone with mental and health issues or links to crime from acquiring a firearm in the first place.
“The law is clear, so nothing needs to be changed,” he told Blair.
“Why attack honest citizens instead of tackling the real problem, street gang.”
As with the United States, organized crime makes up a significant portion of violent incidents in Canada. Tackling those issues and pursuing the most violent of criminals who leave the injured and dead will move the needle on homicides and assault.
“Anyone who suggests the constant threat that women in an abusive relationship face from the potential of firearms in the home, for anyone to suggest nothing needs to be done is unconscionable,” Blair said in response to Blaney’s position.
Constant threat? Way to straw man, or straw woman as is the case here, that one in. I suspect, as is the case in the US, that Canada holds very strong opinions with matching laws against abusers and their access to firearms.
“The current law is very clear, if a firearm owner poses a threat, authorities can confiscate firearms and suspend licenses, preventing further purchases of firearms or possession,” Calgary Conservative MP Bob Benzen responded.
“If our public safety minister actually had a PAL (possession and acquisition licence) or an RPL (restricted possession and acquisition licence) he would already know this instead of trying to dig out [of this],” said Benzen, who represents Stephen Harper’s former riding.
Well then.. Benzen is bringing the fire. I forget how entertain foreign legal proceedings can be. They get spicy. Basically, ‘you don’t know what you’re talking about, Ignoramus’.
“I will admit I’m not a recreational firearm user but I have actually enforced and used these laws to keep communities and people safe,” retorted Blair.
Translated, ‘You’re right, I am ignorant. But that has never stopped me before.’
Blair, your officers may have used these laws. They may have used them to good effect. The laws you’re claiming aren’t there to be used, by the way. But I doubt very much you as a senior administrator put together these cases or collected data to see just how egregious different problems around firearms were before jumping on the “Do Something” express.
“What I can tell you, the authority that exists in law, the laws that are currently available, that enable law enforcement to seize firearms and to revoke licence are limited in their application, and it is only in the circumstances where reasonable and probable grounds exist, and it is only in circumstances where a seizure of a firearm has taken place that a firearm (licence) can be revoked,” Blair claimed.
Yes. All that seems very reasonable and in accordance with not granting the state full license to abuse whoever they please. Seeing a top law enforcement official say the things like ‘reasonable’ and ‘probable’ aren’t enough power to act? That’s frankly terrifying. What’s the next step down from ‘reasonable and probable’, ‘just seems like it’?
“Let me be very clear, red flag laws save lives. I’ve actually used those sections of the Criminal Code to seize firearms in these dangerous situations, and I can also advise you Mr. Speaker of the limitations of those laws,” he continued.
So which is it? Are they there or aren’t they? Why do you want more power?
“We know that the average assaulted woman in Canada is assaulted 25 times in a domestic relationship before the police are in fact called.”
So how would opening further authority change that? How would the myriad social pressures and influences that shape the decision making of the hypothetical abused female be improved by your rule change? Will the average drop to 15 times? 10 times? How likely is it any of those 25 are with a firearm or that the abuser is a legal licensed firearm owner?
Blair is quick to pull an emotion grabbing statistic but with nothing approaching useable data to support making a change. I always find that suspect, it’s even more so when we want to throw reasonable and probable to the wind as standards.
But, at least they’re not alone, eh?