Canadians firearms owners, like their American counterparts, view their guns as symbols of tradition and independence. Unfortunately this is where any similarity ends. Americans are blessed with the Second Amendment. We in Canada have no such protection. In fact Canadians possess no gun Rights at all.
In 1995, the Canadian government passed into law Bill C-68. Its implications were nothing short of ominous. As a result of this draconian piece of legislation, democracy in this country was dealt a crippling blow. The civil Rights bestowed to the populace were systematically denied to law abiding firearms owners.
The new Firearms Act (C-68) was so voluminous, complicated and ill conceived, that lawyers could barely decipher it. Firearms owners became second-class citizens -- citizens under extreme scrutiny by the State. One senior Justice Department official was quoted as saying, "Firearm ownership and use is a highly questionable activity that demands strict controls."
Some of the civil Rights denied firearms owners under the Act are;
. arbitrary and unreasonable search and seizure
. Reverse onus (guilty until proven innocent)
. Denied right to counsel upon arrest
. Imposed self-incrimination
. Denied right to privacy.
These form just a few of the more flagitious statutes inflicted upon the law abiding firearm owner. I would speculate that Adolph Hitler would have been pleased to have incorporated C-68 into his Firearms Control Act of 1934.
The arrival of C-68 brought in mandatory universal firearm registration. Failure to comply could result in imprisonment for up to 10 years. The government would then allow the lawful firearms owner to keep his firearms if he would submit to answering very intrusive questions about his/her mental health status, finances, family life and personal habits. This is provided that he/she passed muster and was issued a license to possess said firearms. This license is renewable every 5 years whereupon the individual has to repeat the whole process all over again. Failure to apply for renewal can result in a prison term of up to 5 years -- a criminal conviction for doing nothing!
American firearm enthusiasts may feel relatively comfortable that they live in a society that doesn't demonize firearm ownership. But make no mistake, there are sinister force at work in your nation that view our demise with envy.
The liberal media toes the party line in sensationalizing the arrests of unfortunate law abiding gun owner who inadvertently run afoul of the complicated firearms regulations. The media further exacerbates the anti-gun hysteria with blatant fear-mongering.
It has become too much to bear for some of the older firearms collectors, sport shooters and hunters. They have simply capitulated out of fear of the law and turned over their prized possessions to the State for destruction without compensation.
The sports shooting industry has collapsed under the weight of this onerous legislation. What was once a billion dollar revenue windfall has now been reduced to a mere shadow of its former self with range and gun club closures, gunsmithing, retail and outfitter bankruptcies, thousands of lost jobs and the decimation of a way of life for many.
First, it was registration and licensing. Then the government started to prohibit and ban certain types of lawfully owned firearms. Once the cancer of gun control starts, it will not stop until it consumes and destroys the firearms community host completely.
Concerned Americans sport shooters can help. Boycott Canada! Don't come here to hunt. Americans make up the largest demographic group of tourists who come to Canada and leave billions of coveted dollars in their wake. Write, phone or E-mail the Canadian government in Ottawa that freedom loving Americans will not abide the tyrannical abuse of their Canadian firearm owning cousins.
In the end, we must all stand united in our fight against those who fail to understand what it means to be free or the price good men of conscience must pay in order to fight the ubiquitous evil of indifference.
Copyright 2005 The Sierra Times