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Stock doesn’t get his facts straight on handguns

Man, I don’t know if it’s habit for these guys to try and mislead the public, or if Conservative Ministers just say stuff without bothering to double-check their statements. Case in point: Stockwell Day rejects a total handgun ban as requested by Ontario. The reason according to Stock? He claims stats prove a total handgun ban increases gun crimes:

Day argued that other countries where handguns have been banned have seen the numbers of gun crimes increase. “In jurisdictions that have eliminated or tried to eliminate, to ban handguns the United Kingdom, Ireland, other jurisdictions in fact crime with guns has unfortunately gone up,” Day said.

Unfortunately for him, but fortunately for us and the public, our media actually does some fact-checking, and Day’s statement is totally wrong:

Day’s statements, however, don’t appear to match with the facts. There was a 16 per cent drop in the number of firearms offences in the United Kingdom in 2006 compared with the previous year, according to figures from Britain’s Home Office. Injuries related to gun crimes also fell while fatalities rose slightly. Police in London also reported an 11 per cent decrease in gun crime in the metropolitan London area during the same period. It was a different story in Canada, where the number of deaths due to firearms rose to 222 in 2005 from 173 the year before.

Again, is Stock trying to mislead everyone, or is he getting fed the wrong info from his staff? Whatever the case may be, this is just another example of the Conservatives trying to protect their gun-lobby friends.

UPDATE: 6:28pm – Warren makes the point that perhaps Day was looking at the longer term period since the total ban was introduced. He also makes the point that Day totally avoids bringing up Japan, where a total gun ban in place has reduced gun crimes considerably.

UPDATE 2: 7:00 pm – A Quantum Liberal mentions Australia is an even better example of reduced gun crimes then Japan is. Those laws were also implemented by a conservative government, not normally the ones who would implement something like this, but in this case saw that it was necessary.

6 comments to Stock doesn’t get his facts straight on handguns

  • I support a near complete hand gun ban, but not a complete one.  I do believe that target shooting is a legitimate reason for owning a gun, provided their guns are left at the range and no one else asides from law enforcement and a few select jobs (such as the people who move money from banks who do carry guns as it is i.e. Brinks, Loomis).  When it comes to reducing gun crime, I think tougher gun laws make a difference up to a point, which is why Canada's crime rate is significantly lower than the United States, but I don't think tightening them to Britain's levels would make as big a difference.

  • I support a near complete hand gun ban, but not a complete one.  I do believe that target shooting is a legitimate reason for owning a gun, provided their guns are left at the range and no one else asides from law enforcement and a few select jobs (such as the people who move money from banks who do carry guns as it is i.e. Brinks, Loomis).  When it comes to reducing gun crime, I think tougher gun laws make a difference up to a point, which is why Canada's crime rate is significantly lower than the United States, but I don't think tightening them to Britain's levels would make as big a difference. 

  • I have a bit more faith in the Canadian electorate, Foot… not having the gun culture here makes me more confident in my faith.

    I absolutely think in the Liberal’s case they should make that a plank in their platform – a total handgun ban to go side-by-side with a revival of the long-gun registry

  • foottothefire

    Tactics in this fight are all important.  The basic objective is find an issue or two that Mr. n' Ms. public can agree on, hard sell those goodies while attacking the opposition for being extremist as in this case, denying the 'sport' a handgun.No one ever accused Doris of being possessed of a brilliant mind.  Hell, if the "greatest country in the world" is stupid enough to go for guy's like Bush, Cheney or Reagan, there's little chance a Canadian dork is gonna fail when backed by NRA big bucks.   

  • A Quantum Liberal

    If you're looking for a better example of what you're looking for, look up AUstralia's hand gun ban and crime rate.

  • Scott,   I thought this claim was suspicious as well. I found though that, if you look at it in the context of when the changes were introduced in Britain in 1997 until now, it is accurate that gun crime has increased (quite significantly actually).  I’d be more suspicious of his choice of examples: he chose to mention Britain, where the ban has been relatively ineffective, as opposed to Japan, where the tightest gun control laws in the world, including a ban on handguns, have consistently contributed to very low levels of gun crime.  

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