Dear Mayor Tory, Help Police Without Hurting Athletes: Nils Ek — Nils Ek, a Canadian national pistol competitor, sent the following letter to Toronto Mayor John Tory after the mayor renewed his call to ban handguns from sport shooters across Canada.

He sent the letter last week and gave permission to publish it.

Ek’s top scores are in 25-metre and 50-metre pistol shooting single handed at a bullseye the diameter of a teacup (10 cm, 3.9 inches).

ISSF refers to the International Shooting Sport Federation.

Dear Mayor Tory,


I am dismayed at your continued call to ban handguns across Canada, which at face value would mean the confiscation of my own sporting firearms. I am a competitive target shooter, in what is described as ISSF or “Olympic-style” pistol shooting.

I participate in sanctioned competitions both in the province of Quebec and elsewhere.

A number of my co-competitors from across the country represent Canada at the international level, most recently at the 2018 Championship of the Americas in Guadalajara, Mexico, where several of them won spots at the 2019 Pan Am Games and even the 2020 Olympics.

Our sport is safer than most well-known sports like hockey, soccer, or basketball. It requires strict adherence to all applicable firearms laws and range-safety rules and is injury-free.

We have absolutely no link of any kind to the violence that plagues Toronto and other major urban centres.

That violence is obviously the result of criminal gang activity that appears to have overwhelmed law-enforcement resources, and I appreciate the urgency with which you address this terrible problem.

However dire the violence may be, it will not be alleviated by banning our sporting firearms.

I appeal to you to reconsider and revise your call to ban all handguns. Ensure that law enforcement get what they need to combat the gangs, and do not focus ineffectively on the tools we athletes use to pursue our passion.

Thank you very much for reading this message. I wish you all the best.


Yours sincerely,


Nils Ek
Pointe-Claire, Quebec


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