Guns and Canada

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Over the past few years, there have been a number to mass shootings in the USA, after which people across the country demanded stricter gun laws in an effort to prevent more.

But do strict gun laws even work?

Case in point: Toronto Ontario

Last Wednesday at just after midnight, shots rang out on one of the busiest streets in Toronto. People were driving or walking on King West when between 10-15 shots rang out in what police are calling a targeted attack.

A man got out of a blue Mazda, approached a group of people and opened fire, killing one man and wounding a woman.

Within a 24 hour time period, there were six shootings, resulting in two deaths and multiple injuries.

According to the Toronto Police website, there have been 396 shootings in Toronto in 2018 with 559 victims.

Canada has very strict laws when it comes to gun ownership and even if you own a gun, you are not allowed to carry it, openly or concealed, in public.

To buy a handgun, an applicant must be over 18. They must take a two day safety course, pass a test, take another course and test passing with more than 80%, and then apply for a Possession and Acquisition License (PAL) for restricted firearms.

To apply you pay $80 and need a photo, references, criminal and mental health history, and a list of current/ex conjugal partners.  The RCMP does a background check for criminal records and might interview a person or their references.

Next is a 28 day waiting period.

Legally you can only own a gun in Canada for target shooting purposes, so gun owners have to belong to a shooting club to get an Authorization to Transport. This allows gun owners to travel with a gun in their possession.

Once the license is received, a gun can be purchased from a gun store, where they will contact the firearms centre. The buyer must speak with them from the store to verify their identity and that they want to buy the gun. They then issue a temporary transfer that allows the buyer to take possession of the gun which usually takes a few days.  After that it takes a few weeks for the buyer to receive the registration certificate for the gun. Online purchases require getting set up with an online gun dealer, which requires scanning and sending in a copy of their PAL and gun club membership.

It’s not as easy to get a gun as people think so how are all these shootings still happening?  I think we can all agree that criminals who want a gun disregard the rules when it comes to acquiring them.

Does it makes sense to issue more restrictions on law abiding citizens?

What The Heck Eh?

 

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