Wednesday, February 15, 2012
February 15, 2012
Canada's National Firearms Association Media Release
Canada's National Firearms Association congratulates the Conservative government on the successful passage of Bill C-19, as a bill which will end the legal requirement to register long arms. "This is a truly historic beginning for Canada. We are beginning to see the government honour its commitments to repeal bad firearms laws," stated Sheldon Clare, President of Canada's National Firearms Association. "However," added Clare, "much more remains to be done. The current licensing provisions created by the Liberal government along with these registration laws remain the most egregious aspect of the law. The peaceful possession and use of firearms should not be a crime. In Canada, if you don't have a license to possess your firearms, you are still a criminal." Clare continued, "It is quite likely that millions of Canadians possess firearms without a license; - a requirement that they never accepted as necessary to retain their own property. What would be much more useful is to put in place a simpler program in which prospective firearm purchasers were simply checked for a record of violence, or behaviour that would preclude legal access to firearms. It is an insult to have to take a course merely to own one's own property," Clare asserted. "The license remains a serious problem - licensed gun owners still have fewer rights than criminals. Police can conduct warrantless searches of gun owners' properties, but not those of suspected criminals. Gun owners are required to testify against themselves, but accused criminals are not. Gun owners' Charter rights are violated in both these cases," Clare elaborated.
Clare further said, "The firearms licence actually misdirects the police. Valuable police resources are wasted keeping track of peaceable licence holders. These resources could be used to monitor violent criminals on probation or parole. Millions of Canadians believe tracking innocent Canadians is wrong headed," argued Clare.
"As the NFA has found, all too often the police use licensing to harass gun owners. For example, hunters have been stopped and their guns confiscated because inadequately trained police did not know the law. In some jurisdictions, gun owners who forget to renew their licence are pressured into surrendering their firearms," Clare pointed out. "This program is not about saving lives, it is about excessive state control."
Clare also indicated, "The government's own reports show that there are over 600,000 made-in-Ottawa paper criminals whose only "crime" is to have failed to keep ahead of the red tape imposed by the Liberal's Bill C-68, and its predecessor Kim Campbell's Bill C-17 which both added up to make the Firearms Act. The Liberal's went further with the Firearms Act and made these firearm owners instant paper criminals. Bill C-19 won't correct these injustices. There are many other offensive problems with the Firearms Act - problems that have little to do with law and order and a lot to do with trying to change how people live."
"Scrapping the long-gun registry is a step in the right direction, but more needs to be done. I implore the Government to ensure that Bill C-19 is not the last step in reforming Canada's irrational gun laws, and I look forward to working with the government to move towards laws that will have the respect of all Canadians," concluded Clare.
For more information contact:
Blair Hagen, Executive VP Communications, 604-753-8682 Blair@nfa.ca
Sheldon Clare, President, 250-981-1841 Sheldon_Clare@shaw.ca
Canada's NFA toll-free number - 1-877-818-0393
NFA Website: www.nfa.ca