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THREE CHEERS FOR CANADA
Canada has been suffering from an acute case of Big Brotherism for years. Canadian life has increasingly been suffocated by the hand of government intrusion into every aspect of life.
Well, big brother seems to have been sent packing, at least for a while. Voters last January tossed out the Liberal (socialist) government. The Tory, Conservative party won a plurality, but was forced to organize a minority government as had the Liberals before them.
One of the major issues in the campaign was gun control. For about a decade, the Liberals had attempted to convince Canadians that a registry of the long guns of the good guys would keep the bad guys from having guns. As crime rose, and suspicious gun owners refused to obey the law, the Liberal claim to divine knowledge became tattered.
Legitimacy was replaced by contempt when it turned out that the registry's computers had been hacked and used for precision burglaries of gun collections. The system sold as the way to keep guns out of the hands of bad guys was actually putting guns in the "wrong hands" as Sarah Brady likes to put it! (I know, Sarah really means all non-government employees are the "wrong hands.")
The Liberals not only looked silly for supporting an obviously failed program, but their position lost all legitimacy when it was learned that the gun registry was a cash cow for consultants and favored businesses.
Try as they might to cover up their financial hanky panky, an audit by the Auditor General of Canada revealed that the system was one thousand times over budget and climbing. A second, recent audit revealed fiscal tactics had been used that would have been admired by an Enron accountant. Gun registry spending was pulled from many different budgets without a trace -- no line items flagged the covert movement of the funds.
The Liberals were further wounded when an Adscam scandal of similar proportions came to light where party cronies were awarded contracts because they were insiders. Payola here, payola there, payola everywhere was increasingly the image of the Liberal party.
The Tories campaigned on an "end-the-gun-registry" plank in their platform. It was very helpful in ousting the Liberals. It focused opinion on much that was wrong with the Liberal government.
While lacking the majority (yet) to outright repeal the long gun registry, they have been taking the money for the registry and giving it to the Mounties so they can do real police work. They have also proclaimed an amnesty so unregistered gun owners don't have to register pending repeal of the law.
Interestingly, when the Liberals decreed (without a vote in Parliament) many amnesties to try to snooker Canadians into registering their guns -- that was good government. Now that the Tories have decreed an amnesty in the same non-parliamentary fashion (it would be called an executive order in the U.S.), opponents have decried the amnesty as a horrible violation of the rule of law. Just ask the Liberals and their allies in the mainstream (partisan) media.
Not only is the gun registry heading in the right direction (to the trash heap), the Tories have sacked Canada's rabidly anti-gun representatives at the UN's ongoing gun control convocation. The UN has been seeking for years to impose worldwide gun control (read: disarm American private gun owners). Canada, along with Japan, has been a major supporter of a treaty which would have the UN administer an international gun registry.
With the still-growing scandal of the Canadian long-gun registry, the UN will have a harder sell for its own global gun registry. To put it in other words, guns don't get into criminals hands because of negligent gun owners, guns get there thanks to gun control laws!
To add insult to injury, the UN would like to have its anti-gun powwow over the week of July 4. This is a plan much like kicking a sleeping dog. If US gun owners have been too busy until now to pay attention to the UN's lust for their guns, this little bit of timing might change all that. Maybe we will come to see the UN as George III's revenge.
In light of this, the Canadian election in January takes on a worldwide significance. The Conservative government of Canada has become a true ally of the United States, and of individual gun-owning Americans -- indeed of gun owners everywhere.
all take heart that a people that seemed to go along with every
oppressive policy of their socialist government finally "pushed
back," as member of Parliament Garry Breitkreuz (Conservative
from Saskatchewan) told me in my Live Fire interview with him
(hear the interview).
Maybe those of us who are Canada's southern neighbor will follow
suit and push back against our own suffocating socialists.
Larry Pratt has been Executive Director of Gun Owners of America for 27 years. GOA is a national membership organization of 300,000 Americans dedicated to promoting their second amendment freedom to keep and bear arms.
GOA lobbies for the pro-gun position in Washington and is involved in firearm issues in the states. GOA's work includes providing legal assistance to those involved in lawsuits with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, the federal firearms law enforcement agency.
Pratt has appeared on numerous national radio and TV programs such as NBC's Today Show, CBS' Good Morning America, CNN's Crossfire and Larry King Live, Fox's Hannity & Colmes, MSNBC's Phil Donahue show and many others. He has debated Congressmen James Traficant, Jr. (D-OH), Charles Rangel (D-NY), Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY), Senator Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ), and Vice President Al Gore, among others. His columns have appeared in newspapers across the country.
He published a book, Armed People Victorious, in 1990 and was editor of a book, Safeguarding Liberty: The Constitution & Militias, 1995. His latest book, On the Firing Line: Essays in the Defense of Liberty was published in 2001.
Pratt has held elective office in the state legislature of Virginia, serving in the House of Delegates. Pratt directs a number of other public interest organizations and serves as the Vice-Chairman of the American Institute for Cancer Research.
E-Mail: [email protected]
Either Pratt or
another GOA spokesman is available for press interviews.
To add insult to injury, the UN would like to have its anti-gun powwow over the week of July 4. This is a plan much like kicking a sleeping dog.