Sunday, December 24, 2006

Gun Control and Thoughtcrime

Well, Orwell's back in Canada. After the horrific shooting in Montreal on September 13, 2006, the gun control BS meter has hit another all-time high. (link)

Here are the facts as admitted in the press:
  • The murderer, Kimveer Gill, had his PAL (firearms license).
  • The weapons used were all registered.
All this implies that he passed all the background checks and other stuff needed to buy the weapons.

To be clear, my heart really goes out to the families and the victims. Being at the wrong place at the wrong time, and being killed by a person who has become insane is a terrible thing to happen. But whether this is by firearm, bow and arrow, bomb, or butter knife, there will always be someone crazy enough to do this stuff. I understand how tempting it is to argue that "had guns been banned, this would not have happened" but the addition to that I would make is "this way." The insane man would have found another way, perhaps by looking up how to make explosives, or by getting a sword and getting up close and personal. The casualties would have been similarly horrific. If that were to happen, there would be no outcry to ban chemistry books or things with sharp edges, would there?

Now there is chatter from both sides. The pro-firearm lobby states, correctly, that none of the laws passed since the Lepine Massacre in 1991, also in Montreal, helped protect the victims. In fact, firearms related murders spiked in 2005 (link to Statistics Canada), and that trend is set to continue. What changed? Firearms registration became mandatory. Hmmm.

With the easy access to firearms afforded by proximity to the United States, any criminal wishing to get a firearm has little trouble getting one. The due diligence exercised by the US states themselves is pretty good (having gone through this myself a few times), but is about as water tight as legal firearms ownership is in Canada.

Yes, losing someone to firearms is bad. So is losing a friend to a drunk driver. But there, you blame the driver. Why is peoples' logic so flawed when it comes to firearms?

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