To the editor:
Re: Gun Registry Fiscal Waste to End, Oct. 27 Capital News.
It was Mulroney’s Justice Minister Kim Campbell, because of the horrific 1989 Montreal Massacre, where 14 students were gunned down, who introduced stricter gun regulations, passed by a unanimous parliament.
Allan Rock, responding to concerns from the police for public safety, took Campbell’s initiative a step further. The police claim the registry keeps gun owners accountable for their firearms; helps police take preventive action, enforce prohibition orders and trace guns found at the scene of a crime back to their owners.
The 2009 study by the Canadian Association of Emergency Physicians found in Canada 25 per cent of firearm related homicides were by rifles or shotguns, 58 per cent by handguns and 18 per cent by prohibited firearms. The study found 78 per cent of spousal homicides and 13 per cent of police officers killed on the job were because of long guns. The study also found that since implementation of the registry there has been a reduction by 30 per cent of long gun homicides.
The Conservatives will not only scrap the registry but destroy the existing record. This is really reckless! Public Safety Minister Vic Towne told Parliament he did not want future governments using existing records to bring back the registry. So the conservatives will throw away $2 billion to make their ideological point?
This reminds me of the Diefenbaker decision to terminate the Avro Arrow. The program produced, at the time, the most advanced combat aircraft in the world—it too was costly. When the Americans pressured him to cancel it because it competed directly with their aeronautics industry, Diefenbaker’s disdain for anything Liberal made it easy to foolishly compile.
If we had kept it, we would today have a world-class Canadian military aeronautics program and would not be giving the Americans $65 billion to re-equip our Air Force. That money, like the ship building contracts, would have stayed in Canada.
If in the future we have another gun related massacre and we feel moved to control gun ownership are we going to have to spend another $2 billion? Hunters and legal gun owners are not inconvenienced by having to registering their guns. Misguided libertarians complaining about big-brother government are strangely silent about the new electronic identity chip the Americans are demanding in our new Canadian passports
Jon Peter Christoff,