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Are the urban/Quebec Tory MP’s representing constituents on gun registry?

I saw a pretty good thread in this Macleans article asking what these MP’s were voting against the registry for if this was indeed a “free” vote on a supposed “private members bill” that is supposedly allowing them to represent their constituents wishes:

Patchouli: Notice how nobody here comments about any Cons who might not be representing their constituents who may not want the registry dismantled. Interesting that the tendency is to believe only Liberals or NDP are not fulfilling constituent wishes. Why aren’t Con MPs expected to represent constituents over PM?

Mike:…The CPC ran on a platform of allowing more free votes, back when they were in opposition. And, now, it is just a tacit assumption that none of them will ever have an independent thought. I cannot believe for a minute that none of the CPC MPs would not want to keep the registry. Con MPs might as well be card-board cutouts…

Derek: Josee Verner – Tory woman from the middle of Quebec City – why is (she) ignoring the views of her constituents on the gun registry??? and she is not the only one.

Patchouli: Absolutely — let’s talk more about that. I mean if it’s a private member’s bill — why aren’t the urban Cons backing their constituents? Surely every Con-held riding isn’t comprised mainly of gun-toting bible thumpers! Because it’s NOT a private member’s bill; it’s a government bill. And Layton has been swallowed by his own democratic ideals, and it sure doesn’t make him look any stronger as a leader.

Reverend_Blair: You could put at least five of the Quebec Conservatives in that group, maybe all of them, I think…There is no way that the Conservatives are supporting this unanimously and not being whipped. That simply wouldn’t make sense because they represent ridings where the registry is popular.

This is why I and other Liberals have been going after the NDP and leader Jack Layton hard on this issue, for precisely the reasons mentioned by the commentators; this is not a true private member’s bill or a true free vote on the Conservative side by all appearances.

That said, there are an awful lot of Conservative MP’s that need to be contacted and asked why they are supporting killing the registry if this is a truly “free vote”, when they are representing ridings where support for the registry would be expected to be strong. I would hope they are made awfully uncomfortable by their own constituents in the next couple of weeks leading up to this vote to kill the bill trying to kill the registry.

15 comments to Are the urban/Quebec Tory MP’s representing constituents on gun registry?

  • ridenrain

    It’s an knee-kerk idiological answer to a the shooting in Montreal. The party who always promised gun control found the solution was more gun control… and the police chiefs agree with that. Go figure.

    You can shift the focus to rural crimes but it’s just not getting the news coverage that your nightly Toronto shootings are getting:
    “A 27-year-old man who had already lost his brother to street violence became Toronto’s latest homicide victim when he was caught in a hail of gunfire Friday night.
    In a cruel twist, Friday night’s shooting happened outside the home of Tracy Christie, whose daughter, Christie Christie, was shot dead in a home invasion 14 years ago, forcing the family to relive their own grief. ”

    Surely these constituants deserve effective policing and the money that is wasted on the registry isn’t helping them.

    • Redrum

      @purplerain, uh-huh. Well, purple prose and misspellings* aside, this ham-fisted Gary Mauser tactic of trying to change the channel is just a stupid red herring.

      * (it’s ideo-logy for the rest of us, too wedded to our ideas; idio-tology for you con-bots)

      Yes, the news revels in those gang slayings: esp. in TO, where, hello! most of the media is based. But that’s just their “we’re the centre of the world mentality” operating.

      Proportionally (which is to say, per capita), the homicide rates are much, much higher in smaller towns and rural areas: the very places they’re trying to kill the registry. Again, ‘cuz it’s mostly family and drinking buddies who shoot each other in piques of anger, not drive-bys.

      And guess what, that (let’s say for the sake of arg.) $10-M annually being spent on the gun registry is federal dollars, so none of it would be allocated to fight crime in Toronto (which has its own police force), even if it is scrapped.

      And how much law enforcement do you think we could buy with that paltry $10-M or so you ‘”Let’s spend almost $1-B on law enforcement for a single weekend” types are now in such a sweat about?

      As I noted above, it’s just 0.09% of Canada’s total annual expenditures on policing ($11.45-B in 2008), or 0.4% of the fed’s $2.54-B/22% share of that.

      Moreover, it’s just paper pushers we’re talking about here running the thing in the Firearms Centre… similar to the folks in Service Canada or Veterans Affairs. And Harper’s already signalled that he won’t be re-allocating their salaries to general policing. No, he’ll give them all jobs in a new payroll system (which I’ll bet will have cost overruns, too, like e-Health and the gun registry itself, since these big new databases all seem to be a lot trickier to implement than the slick marketing dudes lead the pols to believe) so that he can lay off other civil servants in Ottawa. So, no, there won’t be any fewer drive-by shootings with the gun registry cancelled. There’ll just be more, or more deadly, accidents, spousal/family homicides, suicidal attempts, and going postal events, among other things, all over the country when the police can no longer know when they’re dealing with a gun nut with over a dozen guns, e.g., not to mention fewer cases where they’re less likely to arrest bad guys, when they’ve pulled someone over or come across them somewhere & can’t find out that the guns in their possession aren’t registered to them, so they’re probably stolen and so he’s probably a crook, etc.

      • James Bagan

        @Redrum, “Proportionally (which is to say, per capita), the homicide rates are much, much higher in smaller towns and rural areas: the very places they’re trying to kill the registry” This statement, like the rest of your comment, is hilariously addled. Please keep the LOLs coming.

        • Redrum

          @James Bagan, yeah, some of you latent psychopaths are easily amused, with laugh-lines like,

          “Rural areas had the highest homicide rate in 2005 as has been the case over the past decade.

          [an average of 2.5/100,00 pop. in all of rural Canada, compared to 2.0 in large urban centres; and in – let me guess – Alberta, the rates are 4.4 in rural vs. 3.4 in Calgary or Edmonton]

          The proportion of homicides committed with a firearm was actually slightly higher in rural areas (39%) than in large urban (35%) and small urban areas (23%). The type of firearm used to commit homicide differed widely between urban and rural areas. While a handgun was the weapon of choice in the large urban areas, a rifle/shotgun was most commonly used in
          rural areas.”

          (from Juristat, “A comparison of large urban, small urban and rural crime rates, 2005”)

          And for spousal homicides, apart from the Atlantic provinces, the rates are much higher in the smaller provinces where there’s less of a large urban (over 100k) pop., and esp. in the Terr’s, where there’s none: the ave. overall rate of spousal homicide in all of Canada from 1997 to 2006 was 4.6 per 1 million spouses, but in NWT, it was 23.8, the Yukon, 30.3, and 71.5 in Nunavut. (Family Violence in Canada: A Statistical Profile 2008)

          And for gun crime in general,

          “In fiscal year 2007/08, Statistics Canada produced geographic data of the number of “firearm related incidents” across Canada per 100,000 persons. Interestingly, Saskatchewan (135) and Manitoba (110) led all provinces, with Ontario (62) and Quebec (69) falling below the national average of (78). Toronto itself was at 109 whereas the Churchill and Northern Manitoba region was at 654 — the highest rate of firearm related incidents in Canada. Nunavut at 434 was the highest among the three territories.”
          (noted by Charles Momy, President, Canadian Police Association)

          Go kiss your gun for me.

  • No, its not a failure. It was designed to help police do their jobs better, and I think it has achieved this.

  • ridenrain

    If the vast majority of the gun deaths are by long arms, their not reported nor is the registry effective at slowing them down.
    The registry was sold as a means to reduce crime and every gang shooting in Canada’s large urban centers with illegal handguns is proof it’s a failure.

    • Redrum

      re: % of LGs v. other firearms used in homicides,

      I suspect Al may’ve been referring to the spousal homicides in partic. with that “vast majority” stat.

      The numbers are compiled each year in the Homicide Survey, of the Policing Services Program, Canadian Centre for Justice Statistics, and Statistics Canada released them in various Juristat issues and people can buy a lot of the data thru Cansim (& academics can access it for free), and for some more detailed breakdowns on the spousal stats, the MP Garry Breitkreuz got the Parliamentary Researcher Lyne Casavant to do special request tabulations, which he then passed on to Gary Mauser.

      The fig’s for 2009 aren’t out, yet (not for another month or so). So, if we confine ourselves to the last ten years, 1999 to 2008, and take the Averages:

      first, for the average 181 homicide victims in all who are killed per year by various types of firearm discharges in Canada (180.7, actually, but I’ll just round off here), the Average no. & %’s killed by the main diff. categories of firearms, are:

      – 111 (61.6%) were killed by Handguns each year;
      – 43 (24.0%) by Rifles or Shotguns, but I think that should be combined with the 4 (1.9)% killed by sawed-off rifles & handguns (which all start out as legal long guns, & might still get traced back to a registered owner if they’d been stolen from their cabin, e.g., which is where a lot of the criminals’ long guns in TO. are coming from now), for 47 (25.9%);
      – 13 (7.1%) were from Fully automatic weapons; and,
      – 10 (5.4%) were ‘Other,’ which includes firearm-like weapons like nail- & pellet-guns, and unknown types (when the coroners couldn’t or didn’t bother to determine what type).

      Note, tho’ that this has been changing a lot, partly due to gangs, and arguably partly due to the success of Bill C-68 & other gun control leg. in getting rid of a lot of surplus long guns and making it harder for criminal types to procure them. In the mid-to-late 70s (74-79), an average of 26% firearm homicides were from handguns (of an ave. of 258 total firearms homicides annually); in the 80s, it was nearly 30% (of 208 ann.); in the 90s, it jumped to nearly 50% (48.6% of 200 ann.); then to 64% in the 2000-2004 interval (of 167 per year); and it was 61% of the 200 ave. annual firearms homicides from 2004-2008.

      So, sure, the LGR isn’t stemming those, but no one said it would or could — it was designed as much for domestic violence, accidents, and suicides, as anything [I know, I know, Mauser thinks he’s quashed that arg., but that’s for another day], and crikey, let’s not forget, the long gun homicides _have_ been going down from 38% of the firearms deaths in the 90s (76 a year on ave.) to 25% in the first half of this decade while the LGR was actually being implemented (42 a year on ave.) to 22% from 2004-08 (when there was a lot of gang violence, some of which used lg’s to; the ave. went up to 44 a year.)

      For the spousal homicides, which of course are a subset of all that, for the same interval, it was an average total of 17 Cndns. killed a year by a spouse (which incl. legally married, common-law, separated, or divorced) using some type of firearm… which represents 25% of all the spousal homicides each year (which is down both absolutely & proportionally compared to the 1978 to 1997 period, when it was an average of 35 (or 37%) of the 96 spousal homicide victims who were shot annually. (Which is why, pace Mauser, the QC researchers Marie-Pier Gagné and Étienne Blais have found that Bill c-68 _has_ saved lives, even taking the other methods of killing into account…. but that’s for another post; I haven’t actually seen their study, yet.)

      Anyhow, the breakdowns for the actual types of firearms used in spousal homicides these last ten years are:

      – 0 fully automatic, & 0 ‘Other’ types
      – Handguns: 27.8% of all the spousal homicides involving firearms from 1999-2008. There were 46 women killed in total this way (i.e., an average of 4.6 a year), for 30.7% of their deaths by firearms, but it’s actually been trending down from about 7 per year to 1 per year; and just one man was killed by a spouse using a handgun in all that time (for 5.3%
      of the male spousal homicide deaths last decade)
      – Long-guns: 62.1% of all the firearms-related spousal homicides by rifles or shotguns (10.5 a year); but that climbs to 72.2% when the 1.7 deaths per year from sawn-offs are included).
      Broken down by sex, that’s 59.3% of the female victims killed by LG’s + 10.0% by sawed-offs for 69.3% of their 15 spousal firearms deaths per year. There’s only an average of 2 males killed a year by a current or former spouse using a firearm, with it being from a long gun 84.2% of the time, or a sawed- off 10.5% of the time, for a 95% total.

      And if we compare the three-year rolling averages for when C-68 began 1995-97, and skip over the intervening years of setting up & then actually inputting the LGR from 2001-2003 and go to the most recent interval: it went from:

      an ave. of 22 (34%) of the 66 total female spousal homicides a year involved firearms b/w ’95-97, of which 25% were by handguns, 64% by (long) rifles or shotguns, and 9% by sawed-off rifles or shotguns. (there was also one fully automatic weapon death).

      – to an ave. of 11 (22%) of the 50 total female spousal homicides a year involved firearms b/w ‘2006-08, of which 18% were by handguns, 67% by (long) rifles or shotguns, and 15% by sawed-off rifles or shotguns. I.e., to only half as many firearms deaths, and 24% fewer deaths overall, so there wasn’t any big substitution effect. (In fact, knives & sharp objects killed 32% of female spousal victims in the 95-97 block, and 33% from ’06-’08)

      (the male victim no’s shifted some, too, but were very small to start with; they went from an ave. of 4 firearms deaths a year in late 90s (out of 19 total), only 8% by handgun, to 2.3 a year more recently, none by hangun, with a 70/30 split on LGs & sawed-offs.)

    • Redrum

      @ridelain, re: “The registry was sold as a means to reduce crime and every gang shooting in Canada’s large urban centers with illegal handguns is proof it’s a failure.”

      I just can’t let this pass w/o ride-cule.

      first, the bigger picture is, it actually doesn’t really matter that much what was said about its intended purpose 15 years ago… what matter is whether it’s useful now, perhaps in unforeseen ways, and the police org’s outline a no. of ways it has been here: (www. +) truthsandmyths.ca/how-the-firearms-registry-has-contributed-to-community-and-police-officer-safety. + html

      second, you put the nonsense in non sequitur with your reasoning. “A” crime-fighting tool hardly connotes “the” only tool they’ll ever need, so, again, the concurrent rise in a different type of gun violence hardly shows that there’s been no good effects in the type this was designed for. It’d be like arguing that AIDs drugs are useless in prolonging life because people are still dying of VD or some other STD’s. Like, d’uh! Or that stores might as well sell cigarettes to minors if they can steal cigars from their parents. Or that we should let people drive drunk since it’s harder to test or prosecute if they’re impaired by some other type of drug. In other words, it’d be stupid to abandon something simply because it can’t do everything, or even everything we’d hope it would do. (Otherwise, the divorce rate would be, like, 99%.)

  • Al

    @ridenrain Just a point. The recent RCMP report on the Gun Registry says the vast majority of gun deaths in Canada is due to long guns,not hand guns.

  • Yes, its a government bill and always was, it’s just taken us a while to realize it — or, at least, it certainly took me a while.
    And if it passes, Harper will get all the credit from his base, for tricking the NDP MPs into supporting a bill that is against their stated party policies, what a clever little boy!

  • ridenrain

    .. meanwhile, another drug related shooting with illegal handguns happens in Toronto.
    “A police source told the Sun that “several shell casings were found,” indicating a semi-automatic handgun was used by the killer.”

    • Redrum

      @ridenrain, So what? Yes, there’s lots of diff. types of crime, and not all of it involves long guns (or their sawn off derivatives). And, yes, the police have to remain vigilant and pursue all types of it.

      But to seriously maintain that at this stage the long gun registry (LGR) is somehow a serious impediment to combatting the other types, is: laughable.

      Let’s say, for the sake of argument, that the LGR itself now represents about $10 Million of the Firearm Centre’s annual $80-M (net) budget. Well, the Total expenditures on policing in Canada are about $10.5 _Billion. (they were $11.45B in 2008*) So the LGR represents 0.09% of the nation’s total annual expenditures on policing. A veritable drop in the bucket.

      Oh, and most of that illegal handgun & gang violence you’d like to distract us with involves: gang bangers shooting at…each other.

      All in all, the chances of being killed by a random stranger are much lower than being killed by someone you know. Only about 1 in 6 (15.6%) of all homicides (from all causes) in Canada b/w 1998 to 2007 were committed by strangers. But over a third (36.2%) were committed by family members (about half of them spousal); over a third (37.9%) were committed by some
      type of acquaintance (esp. “close friend”: 7.9%); and 10.4% were from criminal relationships (incl. prostitutes or drug dealers & their clients, loansharks, gang members). [Source: StatsCan, Juristat, Homicide in Canada, 2008]

      * cut & paste this link & remove the blanks:

      www .statcan.gc.ca/pub/85-225-x/2009000/t009-eng. htm

    • James Bagan

      @ridenrain, Yes, this is very relevant to any discussion of the long gun registry.

  • ck

    The Polytechnique survivors, Nathalie Provost and Heidi Rathjen are now lobbying the Quebec City Harpercons to vote against their Puppet Master and save the gun registry. I don’t hold much optimism for their success, but you gotta give them credit for their tenacity.

    Just too bad about the rotten reception they got from that independent from Portneuf, Andre Arthur, but then,that riding of Portneuf is big hunting territory, where they love their guns. Also home to maximum security joint, Donacona.

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