Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Toronto Gun Ban - misguided?

In the last few days Mayor David Miller has launched an online campaign to put pressure on the feds to ban handguns. The immediate reaction is why, do criminals attempt to legally acquire handguns before performing illegal activities? To me the logic doesn't work.

The mayor has created a video plea & a petition. There's a letter to the PM and a factsheet. The letter called for the feds to completely ban handguns. Before passing judgement, I decided to give it a better look. There isn't any real mention of the guns being illegally imported and what to do about that.

An interesting quote from the factsheet:
Approximately 60% to 66% (two-thirds) of guns seized by the Toronto Police
Service enter Canada illegally across the Canada-U.S. border, and about one-third (up to 40%) are from domestic sources.
None of these stats are more recent than 2006 but I wouldn't think there's been a big change. If anything there's probably been an increase in gun violence. That's over 1/3 of gun seizures are registered handguns. To me that was startling. This stat doesn't reveal whether those weapons were involved in crimes or turned in voluntarily. Removing 1/3 of the guns off the street sounds like a pretty good idea. Perhaps then we'd have less excuses and could go after the other 2/3 of illegal weapons.

It does seem that we're going after law-abiding citizens. Should we get rid of all the cars so drunk drivers will have nothing to drive with? What percentage of legally registered guns are used criminally? I'm pretty sure about 100% of illegals guns are used for criminal purposes. Perhaps tougher registration laws are in order, increase the level of responsibility on gun owners to ensure that they are serious about their collecting, sport or whatever.

While I think the Mayor should be targeting the illegal guns which are all about illegal activity. Removing 1/3 of the guns used illegally can't be that bad an idea.

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