Wednesday, September 22, 2010

The Gun Registry: A Vote to Take Back Canada

It was a beautiful day in the Great White North. The kind of early fall day I love. When the wind is cool and fresh, and my Canada so peaceful and beautiful.

But all I could think about was the clock on this sinister Con site, ticking down to the vote on the gun registry.

And how I wish I could get the news it had been saved, while sitting under a tree at this monument in Montreal to the murdered women of the École Polytechnique.

Or sitting in the gallery of the House of Commons with the amazing woman whose battle to try to extract good out of tragedy has helped make Canada safer.

“The gun registry is the one good thing that came out of the Montreal tragedy,” Laplante-Edward said. “It is a monument to our daughters.”

“We did not do this for ourselves – our loss is permanent. We worked so that others would not have to live through the hell we experienced – and still do.”

I support the gun registry because it works, and I believe it contributes to saving the lives of police officers, women, and all kinds of other Canadians.

But I feel so strongly about it because to scrap it would be to dishonour the memory of all those women murdered on that terrible day.

Long past midnight the police spokesman came in and told us, in French: “We have 14 dead. They are all women.” I turned to Marie-Claude Lortie, a colleague from La Presse, and we hugged, briefly and silently, to try to ease our pain.

The pain of parents and survivors of Marc Lepine’s murderous rampage brought us the long-gun registry.

And because killing the registry would deal a brutal blow to the gentler, less violent society, that so many people like Laplante-Edward have worked so hard for so long to create.

Far too many gun lovers too lazy, dumb, or paranoid to fill out a form, seem to have forgotten where they live. In a country called Canada not Amerika. Where guns are a privilege not a right.

Five years later, the Supreme Court beat back a bid to establish that Canadians have the same constitutional right as Americans to possess and use firearms. Not so, the court ruled. It said gun ownership is not a right in Canada. It is a privilege and, properly, a heavily regulated privilege.

Unfortunately some of the craziness called America has leaked across the border. Some of our gun nutters are now no more than teabaggers.Who love their guns more than they love our values.

Which is why today's vote is really a vote about the kind of country we want to live in.

And a test for the opposition.

The vote will not precipitate an election; it is a private member's bill, after all. But it will set the tone for the fall. It will signal how hard the Harper government will try to push Parliament — and how far Parliament will consent to be pushed.

We have been pushed long enough. Those foul Con bullies think that we are weak because we are decent. But we are only weak because we are divided.

And now is the time to unite and push back. 

Starting with the gun registry vote today, we will begin to take our beautiful country and its values back from the death grip of Stephen Harper and his Con thugs.

And at the same time send a message to the gun nutter teabaggers.

“Guns kill not only bodies but also souls.”

We don't want to live in your kind of country. We want to live in Canada not Amerika.

We will defeat you.

And we will REMEMBER...


ur merit said...

Hey Simon, remember me?:) The feeling holding a real gun is definately terrifying and i always wonder why american still give the rights to possess guns while according to some statistics, less deaths could've been caused without guns. Sad about the loss and the gov should be responsible for some of the tragedies.
Actually these days im working in Vancouver Pavillion in Shanghai Expo and i learned more about Canada.:)

PeterC said...

Simon, I'm bother by something that this gun registry issue is doing. I cannot figure it out and was wondering if you could shed some light.

I am amazed by how many "progressives" are absolutely crazy, I mean they won't even discuss reasonably, regarding the gun issue. In fact I have a bi, cross-dressing, adoptive father friend of mine saying that he wishes Harper had a majority. I asked him why he, a target of the cons hate, would say such a thing. I got no coherent answer but... WTF?

How is THIS issue the one deviding progressives? I ain't no Toronto elite. I am even thinking about getting a gun for hunting so looked into the issues from a gun owning perspective. Nothing here seems particularly onerous. Is the US just leaking into Canada that bad?

Is it not something else?

Simon said...

hi ur merit... of course I remember you. :) How nice to hear from you again. And how great that you are working in the Vancouver Pavilion. Congratulations !!!. I've seen some pictures of the Shanghai Expo and it looks AMAZING. I'm going to have to start considering you as half a Canadian.... ;)

Simon said...

Hi are right to be bothered by what this registry issue is doing to our country. And you're right to believe that it has driven people on both sides crazy. But I blame it all on Stephen Harper. He created a wedge issue when if he was really interested in fixing any problems he would have sat down and negotiated with the opposition parties who have suggested some compromises that I can certainly live with. I was initially conflicted, because as I explained in a post I have country boy half city slicker. But the way the Cons went after the police and those who didn't agree with them, and their total rejection of any compromise made me crazy too. When emotion replaces reason it only hardens opinions on both sides.
I think however we must look at the big picture, when you keep dividing Canadians for political purposes you can strain the fabric of this nation, and that's criminally irresponsible. I think progressives are now so aroused that anything Harper says just inflames them more. And when you look at the even BIGGER picture it's clear to me that the Americanization of our politics is leading us to a place we really don't want to go to.
Although I have a visceral dislike of guns, because I see what they do, and the suffering they create, I have nothing against responsible gun ownership. I realize it is an imposition to get a gun registered, but I like to think of it as a small price to pay for the privilege of being Canadian. And I do think it's so important to differentiate ourselves from the Americans or we risk getting caught up in that madness. Do the country boy and the city slicker in me agree on anything? Yes. We need to do more to unite this fraying nation rather than divide it...