Via Email from the CSSA
Every year since Gamil Rodrigue Liass Gharbi (AKA Marc Lepine) walked into Montreal’s École Polytechnique and murdered 14 female engineering students, the Montreal Massacre Media Collective has used Gharbi’s heartbreaking, misogynist attack to push their civilian disarmament agenda on innocent, law-abiding Canadian firearm owners.
By their standard, law-abiding gun owners are murderers-in-waiting. We are attacked for a crime we did not commit.
The Montreal Massacre Media Collective includes anti-gun activists, all major media outlets, police associations and police departments, doctors, labour unions and many politicians.
They dutifully bow their heads and utter “Never Again,” as if made-up laws can prevent deranged people from committing evil acts. Of course, they cannot.
American anti-gun crusader, Senator Dianne Feinstein, when specifically asked if any law could be passed to stop the Las Vegas murderer, replied: “No, he passed background checks registering for handguns and other weapons on multiple occasions.”
Meaghan Hennigan, one of sixteen people tragically injured during the Dawson College shooting, expressed her frustration about the Liberal government’s lack of movement to further restrict civilian firearm ownership.
Said Hennigan: “Most Canadians would be shocked to learn that the guns used in recent mass shootings in the United States are freely available for private ownership in Canada. Many assault weapons are unrestricted. It’s ridiculously messed up.”
By “assault weapon,” Meaghan Hennigan means any gun she doesn’t like, regardless of its mechanical RCMP classification.
Gun owners counter these emotional outbursts with facts. Criminals commit crimes, law-abiding firearm owners do not. For daring to disagree, we’re called callous and uncaring. We are neither.
“The push for constant incremental laws directed against the 2.1 million lawful and trustworthy firearm owners of Canada seems more emotion-based than evidence-based. Being fathers, mothers, sisters and brothers, Canada’s firearms’ community feels the grief of senseless tragedies.
However, passing laws against those who do not commit these crimes seems lacking in effectiveness,” said Tony Bernardo, executive director of the Canadian Shooting Sports Association.
Unfortunately, evidence and logic are no match for mainstream media bearing images of “assault weapons” and tearful mourners.
Wendy Cukier, founder of the Montreal Massacre Media Collective, is horrified at the growth of target shooting sports. When a government report showed a steady increase of Canadians owning restricted firearms (primarily handguns) she pounced, but predictably obfuscated the issue.
“A million restricted and prohibited firearms in this country suggests that handguns are much more readily available than many Canadians know,” Cukier wailed.
No, it means a lot of people spent time and money to pass the Canadian Restricted Firearms Safety Course to obtain their Possession and Acquisition License and legally purchased a firearm.
Fellow Media Collective member, Heidi Rathjen, also decried the almost 10 percent increase in restricted firearm ownership in 2016.
“It’s extremely worrisome. These restricted weapons pose a significant threat to public health – that’s why they are restricted. We feel that any weapon with military characteristics should be banned.”
By “military characteristics,” Rathjen appears to mean anything that fires a bullet.
Tony Bernardo offered a healthy dose of common sense to counter Rathjen’s rant.
“It’s a continuation of the increase in popularity of target sports. This has been going on now for a few years. A lot of young people getting involved, a lot of ladies getting involved,” explained Bernardo.
Wendy Cukier also said: “It’s the first time in the last couple of decades that we are seeing police agencies reporting that domestically sourced firearms exceed those that are smuggled into Canada.”
Only one problem with Cukier’s statement. It’s not true.
Calibre Magazine’s Daniel Fritter, using information found in The Firearms Investigative & Enforcement Services Directorate and Firearms Operations and Support Unit’s 2014 Annual Report – Western Region, destroyed the “domestically sourced firearms exceed those that are smuggled into Canada” myth.
“The combined total of all firearms identified by the study, through any method, as having been domestically sourced totals just 377 of the 1,140 crime guns analyzed. That’s 33% … a far cry from qualifying as the ‘bulk’ of crime guns,” noted Fritter.
This year’s additions to the Montreal Massacre Media Collective are The Canadian Press and Ekos Research Associates.
Just weeks before the anniversary of the Montreal Massacre, The Canadian Press commissioned a poll from Ekos. Their heavily-biased single question, yes/no poll resulted in the delightfully inflammatory headline spewed across the nation’s media: “69% of Canadians support outright ban on guns in urban areas.”
The key to effective anti-gun marketing is to begin with the poll’s desired conclusion, then write a simple Yes or No question to elicit the desired response.
Yes or No: “I think that there should be a strict ban on guns in urban areas.”
No context. No explanation of existing law. Just a single propaganda statement with the polling bias “visible from space,” to quote Daniel Fritter.
Ekos went even further, saying people “are drawn to the elegant simplicity of this solution.”
The firearms Ekos poll respondents want banned, guns used by violent criminals and gangs, are already banned by Section 92 of the Criminal Code of Canada, complete with a 10-year prison term for violators, a fact both The Canadian Press and Ekos Research deem irrelevant.
- 92 (1) Subject to subsection (4), every person commits an offence who possesses a prohibited firearm, a restricted firearm or a non-restricted firearm knowing that the person is not the holder of (a) a licence under which the person may possess it; and (b) in the case of a prohibited firearm or a restricted firearm, a registration certificate for it.
The Montreal Massacre Media Collective got everything they asked for in the wake of Gamil Gharbi’s misogynist killing spree. Unsatisfied with their success, they now want even more restrictions. They intentionally ignore Canada’s already strict firearm controls.
To legally own a firearm, an individual must:
- Take and pass the Canadian Firearms Safety Training Course and Exam. To own handguns, the individual must also take and pass the Canadian Restricted Firearms Safety Training Course and Exam.
- The individual must apply for a Possession and Acquisition License (PAL), during which the applicant must detail their relationship history, say whether a relationship ended within the past two years, and provide two character references.
- The RCMP performs a criminal background check on the applicant, then supposedly calls their references, asking a series of leading questions designed to elicit a negative response.
- If, and ONLY if, the applicant passes all these tests, will the RCMP issue them a PAL.
- The RCMP runs automated CPIC checks on every PAL license holder in the nation every single day as part of their Continuous Eligibility Screening program.
This rigorous system of checks on law-abiding firearm owners is what Montreal Massacre Media Collective president Wendy Cukier disingenuously (and ludicrously) describes as “handguns are much more readily available than many Canadians know.”
Standing up for ourselves and our lawful lifestyle is not a crime. The majority of gun owners, by their respectful silence on December 6, may inadvertently cede the high moral ground to those who believe we are murderers-in-waiting – who somehow managed to skate by repeated RCMP background checks.
We are not. And our actions prove our words.
To end on a note sure to enrage the Montreal Massacre Media Collective, according to data compiled by TheGunBlog.ca, Montreal is home to more licensed firearm owners than any other city in Canada.