The Liberal Party’s election platform, released today, shows ignorance about Canada’s gun laws.
The Liberals say they will “repeal changes made by Bill C-42 that allow restricted and prohibited weapons to be freely transported without a permit.”
To legally buy or own a gun in Canada, you need a firearms Possession and Acquisition Licence. To get a licence, you need to take course, pass a test of basic knowledge and skill and apply to the RCMP for the licence. The RCMP checks your background and references, and if they come up clean, you might get a licence after a couple months.
That’s one permit.
In addition, transporting handguns or AR-15 rifles home from the store, to the shooting range or to a gunsmith also requires police permission, and requires taking a route that is “reasonably direct.”
Bill C-42, which took effect last month, was supposed to automatically grant all licence holders permission to transport their guns. But that’s not what happened, and many shooters still have to ask for police permission.
A system that requires a police-issued licence and police permission to transport, and that sets conditions on the route taken, is far from one where guns are “freely transported without a permit.”
The Liberal platform also promises to “require purchasers of firearms to show a licence when they buy a gun, and require all sellers of firearms to confirm that the license is valid before completing the sale.”
All of that already happens.
Most stores will refuse to even show you a gun without seeing your licence. You can’t buy ammunition without the store checking and recording your licence information, and exactly what you are buying.
Those are a couple points the Liberals get wrong in their proposed gun policies. Most of their plans add paperwork and procedures for gun makers, buyers, sellers, owners and users, and will do nothing to prevent armed crime.
Canada’s firearms laws are deeply flawed and urgently need fixing. A Liberal government will only make things worse.