No conflict between guns and long-gun registry

Dear editor,

I have guns. More than one, including custom-made rifles. All stored safely and all registered.

This is not a rant by an anti-gun lobbyist. This is a plea to fellow hunters and other gun owners to do the right thing and not be swayed by Stephen Harper’s politics of division.

So, let me say again. I have guns. I love my guns and am a self-described hunting nut. For me, hunting isn’t just a thing I do a weekend or two a year. I dedicate far more attention to it than just loading my guns in the truck and heading out. At home, I hand load all my own ammunition. I’ve hunted all my life — from mountain sheep in British Columbia, to groundhogs on the Prairies, to Caribou in northern Quebec.

Registering my weapons has had no impact on any of that.

As soon as the gun registry was set up, I registered my guns. To be honest, in those early days, the process was a bit of a pain, a little confusing and took some time. But my hunting friends tell me it’s much simpler now.

Even so, we’re talking about registering something that can kill people. We register our cars and motor bikes. My iPod is registered with Apple.

So why not register guns? When police respond to a problem, they want to know what’s waiting for them inside. Factories are required to tell the fire department about the chemicals they have on site — so firefighters know what their up against if there’s a fire. Don’t police deserve the same protection? The country’s chiefs of police think so.

It’s just Harper who thinks otherwise.

From Montreal to Arizona, we pay the price for angry people let loose with guns. No, the gun registry won’t stop all that senseless murder, but it’s a big help. Just look at the statistics between Canada and the USA on deaths by guns.

Harper must be stopped before he raises the flag on the 51st state. He would waste the millions already spent on the registry just to win a few divisive political points.

Maybe he should come up with some new ideas, instead of recycling his old ones.

To my fellow gun owners, register your weapons and vote with all your values. This country faces bigger issues than whether you and I have to fill out a few forms.

Dave Coles

President of the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada

 

 

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