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LETTERS: Firearms advice misfires
An open letter to Public Safety Minister Steven Blaney and MP Russ Hiebert.
I write regarding some recent examples of – to phrase it gently – poor decision-making skills on the part of some elements of your government’s police and firearms administration.
They are, in no order:
1. News reports now indicate that when the RCMP broke into hundreds of houses in High River, Alta., and seized firearms, a) there was no longer any sort of “potential danger-to-civilian” emergency going on, and b) they had evidently used copies of the useless and expensive long-gun registry, which your government had told us was destroyed; and,
2. Your otherwise laudable tough-on-crime agenda brought with it some odd, unintended consequences. You should know that if a citizen misplaces documents for restricted firearms, that is listed for a mandatory minimum prison sentence.
What happens when the government misplaces the documents for those same firearms?
3. Some of your senior officers recently decided – based on no event whatsoever – to reclassify an imported Swiss rifle from “unrestricted” to “prohibited.” Do bear in mind, a) that these now-reclassified, very expensive rifles use identical ammunition, operating actions and five-round magazines as other hunting rifles. But to people uninformed about how firearms actually work, they look scary; b) these firearms have, in the decade or so since they have been in Canada, been used as hunting and range rifles and have been involved in zero crimes or accidents, to my knowledge.
Minister Blaney, the officials doing, recommending or covering up these things shouldn’t even have jobs. If you listen to their advice, you shouldn’t.
David Danylyshyn, Surrey