TheGunBlog.ca — Ontario Premier Doug Ford today became the first political leader in Canada to oppose Toronto City Council’s moves to confiscate guns from lawful, licensed, legitimate gun owners.
Separately, a spokesperson for the mayor said the city’s “expectation” is that confiscating firearms from sport shooters will make the sale of ammunition to murderers “moot.” Following is a round up of comments from today.
Doug Ford Rejects Ban
Ford hosted a press conference today to offer $25 million in funding to fight gang violence.
Reporter: I’m wondering if you would support Toronto’s request for a ban on handguns in the city, and if you support the federal government’s look at further restrictions on guns.
Ford: No, you know, I wouldn’t support a ban on handguns. There’s a lot of legal, responsible handgun owners. … We have to refocus all our resources going after the bad guys, not the good guys, but the bad guys. As I said, we’re coming for them. So tell all the bad guys out there, “Heads up, we’re coming to get you.”
Tory’s ‘Urgent Plea’ to Confiscate
Toronto Mayor John Tory replied to the Ontario spending plan with an “urgent plea” for the federal government to confiscate guns from honest men and women with firearm Possession and Acquisition Licences. (1. Banning possession = confiscation. 2. He doesn’t need to ask for bans and confiscations for unlicensed people, since that’s already the law.)
Tory: Council also made an urgent plea to the federal government to consider banning the sale and possession of handguns in the City of Toronto and to consider tougher sentencing and bail provisions for gun offenders. Those requests are being actively considered and we look forward to a further response.
Source: Tory’s letter via Twitter
Tory Expects Confiscation
The office of the mayor, in a separate statement later in the day, made a comment that invites interpretation.
- It suggests an assumption or “expectation” that the federal government will ban and confiscate handguns from federally licensed gun owners, from Olympic competitors to weekend plinkers.
- The comment by the mayor’s office also suggested:
(a) Slander. that Peter Plinker and Olympic Olivia are murderers or terrorists, so taking away their weapons would take away the need to stop the supply of ammo.
(b) Magic. that taking away Peter Plinker’s and Olympic Olivia’s guns will magically prevent the real murderers and terrorists from using their own illegally obtained guns and ammo to fire copper-plated lead into the faces of children and families enjoying Sunday ice cream.
(c) both (a) Slander and (b) Magic.
In either case, the only way confiscating firearms from all PAL holders can stop violence is if PAL holders are part of the violence. But they aren’t. (Please contact me if you see a possible lawsuit or other action against the mayor or city council for defamation or slander.)
Unnamed Spokesperson: The federal government has made it known they are considering a handgun ban in addition to other gun control measures . . . The mayor supports the ban of ammunition sales, as he voted for at city council. Our expectation is that, with a federal ban on handguns, ammunition will become a moot point.
Source: Toronto Mayor’s Office via Toronto Star
Candidate Keesmat Blames You
Jennifer Keesmat, running against John Tory in October’s election for mayor, also wants to confiscate firearms from PAL holders.
Candidate Goldy Supports You
Faith Goldy, also running for mayor, is the most prominent (maybe the only?) candidate who repeatedly stands up for lawful firearm owners and opposes any confiscations.
Bill Blair Sounds Reasonable
Canadian Minister of Border Security and Organized-Crime Reduction Bill Blair spoke to The Canadian Press in an interview published today about how to stop outlaws from getting or using firearms. Blair was Toronto’s chief of police from 2005 to 2015.
First sentence: Canada’s handgun laws are effective, but the federal government will consider additional restrictions in certain parts of the country along with any other measures to help reduce gun violence, says the new minister of border security and reducing organized crime.
Blair: This is a significant concern for Canadians.
The concern that currently exists in places like Toronto, Surrey, B.C., and other parts of Canada requires that we examine the issue and deal with it in a comprehensive way.
Because I’ve got decades of experience, the prime minister has asked me to provide that focus for our government, to look at every aspect in every ministry so that we address all of the issues related to gun violence and that will enable us to take effective action in addressing it.
We are quite prepared to look at how — in certain parts of the country perhaps — greater restrictions might be implemented. But in addition to that, you have to recognize that in and of itself is not the sole solution.
You have to look at a number of different things and we want to make sure that what we do is what works, and works for Canadians. But we also respect the perspectives that exist right across this country, so it’s not just the consideration of a single place but the consideration of the whole country.
If you look at the difference between gun violence in this country compared to other countries that have less restrictive handgun control, I think it demonstrates that certain aspects of it can work.
At the same time, I think we all share a concern when those firearms get into the hands of violent criminals who are prepared to commit violent acts in our communities and we need to do everything we can do [sic.] keep those guns out of their hands.
Source: The Canadian Press via Toronto Star
The most important part of gun rights isn’t “gun,” it’s “rights.”