July 16th, 2024

FROM THE HILL


By Lethbridge Herald on June 4, 2022.

FROM THE HILL – Rachael Thomas, MP for Lethbridge

The heartbreaking news of the Texas school shooting has devastated families around the world. 

To respond appropriately at the legislative level in Canada, would be to put policy in place that cracks down on the illegal acquisition and use of guns, organized crime groups, and cross-border weapons trafficking. Tough on Crime legislation should also be central to the actions of a government wanting to look out for the safety and security of Canadians. 

Sadly, the current government is going in a different direction. 

The NDP-Liberal government is once again demonstrating that it is more interested in political theatre than making a meaningful difference for Canadians. This time, the costs will be extremely devastating. 

We have seen many politicians try to exploit tragedies in order to push through their agendas. I would suggest this is exactly what is taking place here in Canada right now. The Prime Minister is pulling on the heartstrings of Canadians and promising a reduction in gun violence.

What the Prime Minister is failing to communicate is that the measures he is taking will have the exact the opposite effect. 

The NDP-Liberals have introduced two separate pieces of legislation, one that will let those who break the law off the hook, and another that will penalize those who abide by the law. 

It’s as if they want to incentivise lawlessness. 

Bill C-5, introduced as Bill C-22 in the last Parliament, would amend the Criminal Code to take away mandatory jail time for violent gun crime and allow those criminals to serve under house arrest in our communities. This would make our neighborhoods less safe and more at risk of future gun violence.

This is about politics, not gun safety, and it is at the expense of everyday Canadians who are being victimized in their own communities by rising gun violence committed by gangs and dangerous criminals.

Here are some of the offences the Liberals do not believe warrant mandatory prison time: weapons trafficking, discharging a firearm with intent, robbery with a firearm, and extortion with a firearm. This is both alarming and absurd. 

This soft on crime approach is not only dangerous, but also a departure from reason. Letting serious criminal offenders serve time out in the communities they may have victimized is cruel and unusual punishment for victims. I cannot even imagine telling a victim of one of these crimes that their victimizer is being let back into the community to serve their time on house arrest.

Why is this government putting the desires of criminals above the well-being of victims and safety of our communities? 

Conservatives have always stood for common sense gun safety and strong consequences for those who commit gun offenses. Why? Because it’s the right thing to do. If we value human life, the principles of law and justice, and safety in this country, then we should work to strengthen the structures that uphold those principles, not tear them down under the guise of “compassion.”

It is obvious to anyone watching that the NDP-Liberals are not serious about stopping dangerous criminals from getting their hands on illegal guns and they are not serious about making our streets safer.

Since the Liberals were elected in 2015, gun crime has gone up steadily each year, despite their arbitrary bans and their complicated and expensive buy-back program. The facts do not lie. The soft-on-crime strategy does not help, nor does going after law-abiding firearm owners, and yet, the NDP-Liberals are doubling down on these failed strategies and hoping Canadians aren’t looking at the stats.

For years, my Conservative colleagues and I have been calling on the government to address gun smuggling and improve the ability of border agents to prevent the flow of illegal guns into Canada. We need to give border control agents targeted resources or a directed taskforce to detect smuggling. 

Additionally, they have tabled Bill C-21 which proposes a national freeze on the importing, buying, selling or otherwise transferring of handguns. Instead of taking measures that would actually reduce gun violence in Canada, the NDP-Liberals are targeting our highly-vetted firearms owners who follow the law.

The reality is that the vast majority of gun crimes are committed with illegally obtained firearms. Measures like freezing the legal purchase of firearms does nothing to stop dangerous criminals and gangs who obtain their guns illegally. 

If the NDP-Liberals were genuine in their desire to reduce gun crime in Canada and make our communities safer, they would focus resources on cutting off the illegal cross-border supply and they would keep violent criminals where they belong: behind bars.

This type of political theatre and virtue signaling is reckless, short-sighted, and out of step with a free and democratic society. It’s damaging for all. Canadians deserve much better. 

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Fescue

I think that if Rachael looked into the lastest US tragedies she would find that the murderers were not from crime syndicates or gangs or active in illegal gun trading. No, they were average people with legal access to deadly weapons.

Honest, hardworking Canadians don’t need assault rifles and handguns.

phlushie

The one news item that really was quashed by major media. A black man with a stolen AR 15 broke into a church to shot celebrating graduates. A lady with a concealed carry permit reached into her purse, pulled out her gun and shot him. She saved many lives. A gun could be a tool for destruction or a tool of protection, depending on the human using it.

Last edited 2 years ago by phlushie
biff

i think a lot of lives would be saved if otherwise defenseless people had a reasonable way to respond to twisted people on tilt armed with assault guns. as an aside, what is especially incomprehensible is why these coward-psychopaths always attack regular folk rather some of the planet’s dicks that might be more deserving.

Fescue

That’s super. And I know a woman who is 96 and has smoked for nearly 70 years.

Citi Zen

The majority of the gun crimes in Western Canada are gang or drug related targeted shootings. Not all, mind you, but most. And the guns used are not registered, nor do the shooters have legal ownership of same. If a criminal wants a gun, he/she will get it on the black market. Putting more restrictions on legal owners will never, never stop this.
There is only one solution. Bring back the death penalty for gun related murders.

Fescue

Perhaps. But is there any reason for a citizen to own assault rifles or handguns?

biff

where there exists a great distrust in govt and its enforcement agencies there tends to be a heightened feeling that one needs assault rifles and hand guns.

Fescue

And maybe, biff, this distrust is a root cause. It is unlikely a citizen militia would have any chance against a modern state police force. But that doesn’t remove the feeling of vulnerability that drives men to want to own a machine gun. What would reduce this fear?

biff

an excellent question to which i fail to have an excellent answer. i have done a lot of harping here on the need for representative govt – which we no longer have…if we ever even had it. but at the very least, representative govt would provide more voice to the many as well as an outlet/body for more authentic sharing of ideas, concerns and solutions.
clearly, some people react to the lack of power more than do others, and it seems males react more so than do females to lack of power (lack of voice). perhaps what also requires examination is what it is that draws so many to assault rifles (and, there are an increasing number of females buying in, i believe)? is it action movies – devoid of much thought and substance but loaded (pardon the pun) with reckless shooting, violence, mayhem…and, generally, save for the “good guys”, some unbelievably horrible aiming.
perhaps, at the crux of the issue is male ego and a particular fragility around penis size, which, perhaps, is sought to be compensated for by the likes of big trucks and big guns, the latter rife with phallic image. perhaps this fragility around penis is what underscores male dominated societies at large, whereby there is a perceived need for females to be so utterly controlled by males?
indeed, i have long wondered: if we were as long a female dominated society, or even a comfortably gender equal society, might we have flying saucers by now, rather than inept rockets good for just one use or otherwise bursting apart before they get the job done.

Fescue

Thanks, biff. In an oblique way your post reminded me of something Mae West once said: “Every man I meet wants to protect me. Can’t figure out what from.”

biff

i had not heard that one before – thank you. it is a profound observation. she is among the most amazing.

biff

omg – not the death penalty issue, again. why not dredge up the right to abortion issue, too…and, hey, we can use the death penalty should a female get convicted of exercising their right to their body.

phlushie

Look at the statistics, most of the homicides are committed with available tools, predominately knives , hammers, baseball bats or hammers. When I went to high school in Alberta there were a minimum of 4 half tons in the parking lot, unlocked, and a 30.06, a .22 and a 12 gauge in a rack behind the seat. No one was shot. The real reason for gun control is manifested in the movie Schindler’s List. Guns are not the problem people are. This was demonstrated by Trudeau’s response to truckers in February of this year. The problem was a person, Mr. Trudeau, and we should trust him????????

Fescue

You seem to be inclined towards hammers, phlusie …

phlushie

misspelled axes

Les Elford

Very good question/comment. Can Mr. T be trusted? There may be honest up-standing MP’s in the Liberal party, and the Liberal party ideology may even offer some value to Canadians. Can they be trusted, though? In reality, can any politician be today?

It appears, much like most/ many of the current UCP MLA’s; no Liberal MP is capable or able to offer opposition without retribution or punishment.

Mr. Morneau recently, criticized his good friend’s economic policies and fellow MP’s attitudes but, he was quite different when he was the Finance Minister.

Based on his actions, his behaviour, his attitude, I wonder if Mr. Trudeau may be the most dangerous person in Canada currently.

It appears that is what many may have felt about Mr. Kenney in Alberta.

biff

it is not so much the person than it is the place of power. not sure how it is that anyone can trust any of these henchmen that mostly represent the big corp henchmen. it is not about the political party anymore – it is about the lack of decency and representation in the political system.

Les Elford

Very, very well put. Thank you. Sums up the real issue very succinctly.

biff

thank you, les. and, thank you for taking the time to share out your perspectives and links. not necessary that we agree on everything – it is the sharing that helps one come to a more robust basis for their beliefs.

Les Elford

Please consider the following You Tube clip from Russel Brands. It pertains to Mrs. Thomas’s previous article regarding the Liberal government’s plan to interfere and remove free speech in Canada.

This fast talking /quick thinking social /political commentator may provide a sound representation of what people in other counties are observing in the concerning elements of the Canadian government today. It provides some humor as well.

https://youtu.be/OwF7MMj_wtE