Why won't Breitkreuz let Breitkreuz be Breitkreuz? - Macleans.ca

Why won’t Breitkreuz let Breitkreuz be Breitkreuz?

Colby Cosh on the one-time Reformer’s awkward position


Garry Breitkreuz says the language in yesterday’s embarrassing press release “is not me.” Well, gee, Garry, it may not have been you, but as a longtime observer of your career I thought it was an excellent likeness. If you ask me, you picked a pretty bad moment to disavow the self-portrait.

Joan Bryden’s wire story for CP says that Breitkreuz’s statement “compared Canadian police chiefs to a cult and urged Liberals to beat their leader, Michael Ignatieff, ‘black and blue’.” On count one of the indictment, Breitkreuz must be judged not guilty. He actually compared the opposition in the Commons to a cult, and said it was being “led by organizations of police chiefs”—i.e., political advocacy groups that claim to represent police chiefs, and that have a strong interest in the naïve citizen (or the naïve reporter) confusing them with the police qua police.

Breitkreuz has always worked hard to emphasize this distinction, and it was highlighted rather intensely a year ago when John Jones, an ethics advisor to the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police, quit because of the association’s incorrigible addiction to questionable corporate donations. As Christie Blatchford wrote in the Globe at the time:

Dr. Jones and the members of the ethics committee were in Montreal in August for two days of meetings around the CACP’s annual conference when they learned about Taser’s sponsorship and that of others, including a joint Bell Mobility-CGI Group-Techna donation of $115,000, which went toward the purchase of 1,000 tickets at $215 each to a Celine Dion concert on Aug. 25.

CGI Group Inc. is a major, long-term firearms-registry contractor. In the odious press release, Breitkreuz, or his evil twin, asked “Could it be that CACP support for the registry is financially motivated?” Why the pussyfooting? Seems like he could have just said flat-out that when it comes to the gun registry, the CACP has an obvious conflict of interest and cannot be considered an uncompromised source of policy advice.

As for the charge that Evil Garry called for Ignatieff to be beaten…well, the world will always have its thick-as-a-plank literalists, won’t it? The press release didn’t even refer explicitly to a beating, but said that “[Ignatieff’s] true colours are showing, and if his caucus has any integrity, those colours should be black and blue.” If Breitkreuz thinks that this rough-and-tumble metaphor is an offence worth apologizing for, fine; standards, after all, are ever-evolving in this area.

His real problem is that his rather careful statement about the CACP’s conflict of interest would have been easy for the opposition to strip of its context and twist into an anti-cop sound bite. In the wild-and-woolly Reform days, when the party’s base consisted of half-anarchist and heavily-armed rural Westerners, this kind of tension was not a major problem. Old Reformers readily recognize a implicit distinction between lawfulness and regimentation, between policing and the police state. But this philosophical razor is naturally a little blunter in a federal party that is trying to straddle multiple regions and political traditions. Reform’s passion for old-fashioned, demotic criminal justice seems to have been diverted into the task of elevating the police into a species of untouchable philosopher-king. And in the Ignatieff era, this is a contest in which the Liberals no longer have any compunctions about competing.

That puts someone like Breitkreuz in an awkward position, since he is dedicated to the destruction of a gun-registry program that many police really might like—not because it is in the public interest, but because it gives them another pretext for arrests, searches, and horse-trading with the bad guys. The registry self-evidently gives the police more power, but it is difficult to imagine that it protects anyone from personal harm. You can build all the databases you like, but no properly trained officer of the law will ever enter a premises or stop a suspect without accounting for the possibility of a weapon coming into play. If one were to take the CACP at its word, and accept that the registry with all its inaccuracies is routinely used to “check for the presence of firearms” in homes being visited by police, one would be forced to consider the possibility that the damn thing is nothing but a digital Petri dish of overconfidence and carelessness—well worth consigning to oblivion in the name of safety and common sense alone.


Why won’t Breitkreuz let Breitkreuz be Breitkreuz?

  1. Whoah, you're quoting Christie Blatchford articles? That'll get you a Pulitzer…

  2. This reads like a senate application.

    Not really. I just love that slag.

    Bravo, L'il Colby. Your friends in the CPC are pleased, I'm sure.

  3. You don't think that a responsibly cautious police officer might nonetheless approach a situation differently if he KNOWS there's a firearm in the house he's going in to to investigate a domestic dispute, then he or she would based on the cautious assumption that there always MIGHT be a firearm in said house? You seem to be assuming that if the registry doesn't show a gun at that address that the police just shrug all their cares away and ignore the possibility that there might still be a gun.

    I'd maintain that no matter how cautious an officer is being in their day-to-day policing routine, there's STILL a difference between approaching a house that may or may not have a gun in it, and approaching a house that DEFINITELY has a gun in it.

    • I am not exercised either way — keep the registry or abandon it. But it seems to me that if I were a police officer approaching a house with a fully legal, registered, up-to-date record of a firearm, I would be inclined to assume the resident was a law abiding citizen and perhaps be a tad less wary. The same applies to the gun permit list — do the dangerous/bad buys have permits?

      • I take your point, except that being law abiding in one area of life may not carry over to being law abiding in another. Just because one has properly registered their firearm doesn't mean they'll never shoot anyone with it (likely by accident, often, a family member). So, there's the fact that many of the people shot every year are shot by people they know who are otherwise entirely law abiding owners of legal firearms. If one can accidentally shoot one's wife or husband, one can accidentally shoot a cop you've never met before. Furthermore, the law abiding citizen who registered the firearm isn't necessarily the person the police are worried about. Perhaps the person who registered the firearm is a woman with an abusive ex-husband, and the police are responding to a domestic disturbance at her house. Perhaps they're investigating a suspected ongoing B&E and need to know if there's the possibility that the burglar may have gotten their hands on a gun, or, if the owner is home, they need to prepare for the possibility that the owner will come down from upstairs shooting at the burglars and catch the police in the crossfire. I think the police would want to know that there's a registered firearm in that house before entering, if they can.

        I also think people confuse policing in the real world with what they see on T.V. No, the registry's existence doesn't tell the police about whether or not the drug den they're about to raid has any guns in it, because the gang members probably didn't register their firearms. But this isn't an episode of Miami Vice either. Police officers are VASTLY more likely to be visiting the home of a registered firearm owner to investigate a domestic disturbance than they are to be knocking over a gang hideout (and if they're knocking over a gang hideout, I'm confident that they presume there are going to be weapons, and prepare accordingly).

        The question isn't "do the dangerous/bad guys have permits", it's "does the presence of a gun make a situation the police are entering potentially more dangerous".

    • There isn't supposed to be a difference. It's like the policy about firearms themselves: you treat each one as though it is loaded.

      • I'm not sure your analogy is quite right. In your analogy, whether or not the gun is loaded, the danger exists because there's a gun. I know the gun exists, so I approach with caution, presuming that it's loaded. That's not quite the same thing as not knowing whether or not there's a gun at all. "Be careful, the gun on that table may be loaded" is, to me, a warning due more serious reflection than "Be careful, there might be a gun on that table".

        As Mike T points out below, a soldier would do well to be cautious in a battle lest the enemy has tanks on the other side of that hill. I'm not sure that anyone would subsequently argue that because a soldier should always be cautious in battle, therefore KNOWING that the enemy has tanks on the other side of that hill should make no practical difference to the soldier. There's a big difference between "We can't rest on our laurels and just presume that our intelligence is correct" and "Because we always presume the worst, there's no need for us to gather intelligence".

        • The "assume there is a gun" approach applies when (a) there is reasonable likelihood that there is indeed a gun, and (b) there is no way to check definitively beforehand. Both of these conditions apply to police entering a domicile regardless of what the database says.

          Soldiers in battle are not primarily concerned with personal safety: either their own or anyone else's. Their primary concern is to complete their mission. Accordingly they have to take serious risks. Police on the other hand are primarily concerned with personal safety: particularly the safety of civilians around them. That is their job. Accordingly if they are entering a house, they have to assume that there are firearms in order to prevent unnecessary loss of life. Having a database that says "no record of guns in this house" is absolutely pointless.

          • Having a database that says "no record of guns in this house" is absolutely pointless.

            Wrong. It is WORSE than pointless, if it encourages the officer to actually rely on that information.

          • I just don't understand how so many people seem to think that police officers check the registry, and then if it doesn't show any guns registered to the address they're approaching they take off their own gun, leave it in the car, blindfold themselves, and walk backwards towards the house yelling as loud as they can "I'm approaching the house backwards, blindfolded, alone, unarmed and by myself. Now would be an excellent time to shoot me."

            Police officers are not stupid. It makes no sense to me that we should avoid telling them when there's almost certainly a gun in a house, on the assumption that if they're ever given this knowledge they'll start presuming that there's never a gun in any house unless they are explicitly told that there almost certainly is.

          • To your latest comment, plus, from above: I'd maintain that no matter how cautious an officer is being in their day-to-day policing routine, there's STILL a difference between approaching a house that may or may not have a gun in it, and approaching a house that DEFINITELY has a gun in it.

            Nurses are not stupid people. Nurses are supposed to use "universal precautions" to protect themselves against infections lurking in the body fluids of their patients. You have a nurse in your family? Ask her or him whether, knowing that a patient is HIV+, she or he does anything extra to increase self-protection. Then reflect on the wisdom of that practice. No, cops (and nurses) are not stupid. They are human. "Universal" precautions and "Universal-plus" precautions highlight the danger of the policy of trying to imperfectly grasp the "known" in the mistaken assumption that this beats the unknown.

            And for this, we have to blow billions of non-existent wealth AND mess with people's privacy. No, thanks.

    • You'd think it would be common sense. If I was say, a soldier, I would be cautious there could be tank over that next hill, but I'd be really really interested in know for sure.

      • If the database was "for sure" you'd be right. But since it isn't, your point fails.
        For example, when intelligence tells soldiers that there are no enemy in the next town they're going to enter, they don't go in assuming that this is so. Intelligence like this is useful if it can quantify expected resistance, but it's no good for telling people when to stop taking precautions.

        • I guess I'm just presuming that police officers are smart enough that they're not using the registry to tell them when to stop taking precautions, they're using it to quantify expected resistance.

          • If the registry had information like "this house has a stash of 15 AK-47's, so don't go in unless you're inside a tank" than it might be useful. However, since such stashes are going to be illegal, and hence not in the registry, there's nothing to quantify. Either the house has guns or it doesn't, and the office has to assume that it does no matter what the registry says. Ergo it makes no difference to what the officer does (or at least it shouldn't). So why have it?

    • Yes, you can avoid calling SWAT if you don't think there's a gun in the house. Then you can get your fellow officer killed with your incompetence.

      On the bright side, had they known the fellow owned a legal handgun, they would have got a SWAT team in and the man would have died defending himself and his wife from incompetence.

      Seriously, when 94% of all firearms homicides are committed by unlicensed people with unregistered guns, you're going to risk your life to differing levels of cautiousness.

      I see bigger problems with nervous rookie police overreacting after registry checks on routine stops. People who got licenses are the ones who passed the background checks, remember?

      • Could you link to the 94% source?

        Also, if it's 94% of homicides, and most people who kill someone with a registered gun (likely accidentally) aren't charged with homicide, then it doesn't really tell us much. It's technically possible that 94% of firearms homicides are committed with an unregistered firearm while, simultaneously, 94% of firearms DEATHS are caused by a registered firearm (that's not remotely plausible of course, I just used the same number to show that the percentage of firearms homicides with unregistered firearms tells us nothing about percentage of deaths with registered firearms). Keep in mind that the cop killing you link to was not deemed a homicide.

        I do find the constant arguments that we should get rid of the long gun registry because the police are either stupid, incompetent or trigger happy quite strange. It's a weird argument for so many in the "law and order" crowd to be making. It's especially weird when the argument is made with a link to an article about a cop killing, said article explaining in the VERY FIRST SENTENCE that the officer's death could have been avoided had the registry been checked properly. So, a public commission concluding that proper use of the gun registry could have saved an officer's life is used as an argument for scrapping the gun registry. It's difficult logic to follow. (It's even more difficult to follow when you realize that the weapon in that case was a HANDGUN, and not even the Tories are arguing for the elimination of the HANDGUN registry).

        And what's this: "had they known the fellow owned a legal handgun, they would have got a SWAT team in and the man would have died defending himself and his wife from incompetence". So, the police are incompetent if they raid a drug dealers house without using the SWAT team and an officer is killed. Had they brought in the SWAT team, you argue that ALSO would have been incompetent. It seems to me that the only way the police could have satisfied you in this case is if they had decided to leave the well armed drug dealer alone.

        • Got love statistic…

          A quick look at the statistic for violent crime will tell us that long guns are involved in 0.0003% of all violent crimes in Canada, violent individuals were involved in 100% of all violent crime in Canada. A registration certificate proved useless to 100% of the victims.

          From the Statistic Canada website: http://www.statcan.ca/Daily/English/080220/d08022

          There are about 340,000 violent crime in Canada every year. Out of these, about 2.4% involve involve a firearm (or 8,100 violent crimes) Out of these, 1 out of 3 involve a long gun (2,700 violent crimes) And if the RCMP estimate that 4%-5% of firearm used are registered, we are talking about 108 violent crime committed were a registered/previously registered long gun was present, or 0.0003% of all violent crimes committed in Canada…


          If we want to save lives, what should we do?
          – Invest in programs that can have a positive impact on the lives of vulnerable individuals?
          – Create more paperwork that nobody cares for?

          Hint: Sick and disturbed individuals need help, not a new bureaucracy…

    • Remember this registry only contains the name and address of the registered person, it does not say where his/her gun(s) are stored. They could be stored anywhere with any person so a police officer always, always errs on the side of caution and treats every situation as if a firearm is present.

      Also anytime an officer asks for, say, a vehicle check an automatic hit is sent to the gun registry, some 11,000 a day. They are not registry requests per say but just database requests and are ignored but the Police Chiefs use this figure to justify their political agenda to keep the gun registry, as Miller's puppet Chief Blair does.

    • Police officers ALWAYS assume that their are weapons in the house/building they are entering – weapons can be guns, rifles, knives, baseball bats etc. etc. And this is how they are trained.

      The long-gun registry doesn' t change any of that – knowing that there is or isn't a gun in the house is irrelevant – A gun can be brought into the house (and would not be recorded in the database) or a gun can be in the house, but is now being used by anyone by the owner. The whole concept of the database is flawed. The guns Marc Lepine used were restricted at the time (way before the long-gun registry)- didn't stop him using them.

  4. Funny how conservatives keep drinking from the well of "databases don't save lives" but at the same time fully accept or push for the value of databases of sex offenders, databases of fingerprints and DNA (including police access to non-criminal fingerprints and DNA), databases of known associates (even non-criminals), keeping files on the likes of Tommy Douglas and others… all in the interest of public safety.

    But ask them to register ownership of their gun, with no criminal sanction and no fee (so less sanction even than for car registrations), and whoa – the totalitarianess of the state laid bare! Privacy Rights! Cop leaders are in it for themselves! Additional information is not helpful! Sometime in the past, three Prime Ministers ago, we spent too much in setting it up!

    Information is power. Mr. Cosh is right about that. This helps cops in protecting themselves and pursuing/investigating crimes for not much money each year. Has it been a huge significant help? Probably not. But is that the threshold? If so, why is it not applied to anything else?

    • Your first paragraph is an excellent way of putting Breitkreuz's problem; I wish I'd stated it so clearly.

    • Firearms owners are already tracked in a licensing database. Registration is an order of magnitude more complicated and comes after the owner is already vetted by authorities, safety training, spousal and peer approvals. To declare a firearms owner a non-criminal via an issued license and then make up criminal offenses out of paperwork for that person, is stupid and silly.

      • How many traffic deaths have been prevented by registering ownership of vehicles AND drivers licenses?

        To declare a driver of a car a non-criminal via an issued license and then make up criminal offenses out of paperwork for that person, is stupid and silly.

        • tedbetts, what a imbecilic response. We all drive on public roadways and register our vehicles for identification and insurance purposes. We have a driver licence to show we passed the required tests and meet all requirements to drive the class of vehicle that we are licenced for. We dont have to own a vehicle to have a driver's licence hence both are needed. Guns have been licenced for years, handguns since the 1930's with rigorous testing and requirements to own one.

          As you well know this long gun registry was strictly a POLITICAL response by Allan Rock, he of the shutting down of free speech fame at the U of 0, of the LIberals and was against the easy target of the non Liberal voters of rural Canada. It serves no purpose, just another plank on the nanny state controlling the lives of our citizens.

          • Dave, what a imbecilic response. We all drive on public roadways and register our vehicles for identification and insurance purposes and to ensure ownership, track sales of vehicles, trace thefts of vehicles, trace back from accidents and crime scenes to the owner and many other uses the police have for registering our cars. We have a driver licence to show we passed the required tests and meet all requirements to drive the class of vehicle that we are licenced for. We dont have to own a vehicle to have a driver's licence hence both are needed. Guns have been licenced for years, handguns since the 1930's with rigorous testing and requirements to own one just like for drivers, and, also just like for drivers, the guns those authorized gun users own are required to register ownership, no big difference. In fact, gun ownership registration is even less onerous and with fewer sanctions and, under Iggy's proposals, less costly and with even fewer sanctions.

  5. Wait a minute are you saying that Breitkreuz doesn't believe in the safety or effectiveness of TASERs because the company sponsored their conference? Makes sense that we can't trust what the police say about that either. When's his private members bill coming forward?

    • How non-sequitur. Want to talk about a national TASER registry? TASER licensing? You're on a strange tangent.

      • If sponsorship affects the judgment and credibility of the organization that supports the gun registry, then it also affects the judgment of that organization when it supports the use of TASERs. It's not a tangent, and it's not complicated. It's simple hypocrisy to pick and choose when someone is credible, which seems to be part of the genetic make-up of the not progressive Conservatives.

        • There is a difference between giving credibility to police officers walking the beat… and giving credibility to a "union" of police chief who are playing wannabe politicians.

          If the government hadn't use the gun registry to confiscate legally bought and registered firearms… maybe firearms owner wouldn't be so oppose to it.

          Maybe if the government hadn't taken so many firearm owners to court over technicalities… maybe firearm overs wouldn't be so oppose to it.

          Just my 2 cents worth,

  6. I'm a police officer in Toronto. Chief Bill Blair, or as we call him Chief Miller, DOES NOT SPEAK FOR FRONT LINE OFFICERS.

    Do you know how many times I have checked the registry in my 5 year career?


    I assume ALL calls will involve firearms. It is A FACT that the information in the registry is incredibly innacurate and out of date. So much so, the Canadian legal system WILL NOT ALLOW any information gained from the registry to be used as evidence in court.


    • So then Chief MIller doesn't speak for you on TASERs either, I presume?

      • Does the CACP receive funding from TASERs R US? Or do they just get it from CGI?

    • If you are a police officer, I'll eat my hat. You may have fooled people, were it not for your conbot love of ALLCAPS.

      • Only conbots use all caps? Clearly you have not been perusing the comment boards in any compreshensive, systematic way . . .

        • If you have have the ability to peruse online comment boards in a comprehensive, systematic way without losing all faith in humanity, I salute you.

      • If you are a police officer under Blair, you are not a rural cop. Who do you think you're kidding?

        I have a girlfriend who's an OPP officer (rural) and she gets really ticked off at Shelley Glover trying to act as spokesperson for all police officers.

        And, Glover trying to say officers are afraid to speak up.

        Glover can lie well can't she?

    • "I'm a police officer in Toronto."

      And I'm an astronaut.

      • And Colby Cosh is a columnist.

        No, sorry he really is. Not a journalist, mind you, but for the above piece of work, a columnist.

        When your opinion becomes part of the story, it stops being a story and becomes your opinion.

      • You are not a police officer that is impossible!

    • … and not a lucid response to Matthew's main arguments. Just ad hominem, attacking his identity. Says a lot.

      • Welcome to this board!
        You will see this over and over again here!
        The lefties have NOTHING to offer otherwise!

  7. . Old Reformers readily recognize a implicit distinction between lawfulness and regimentation, between policing and the police state.


    Surely the author means CLAIMED to recognize a distinction, not that a clear, delineable line existed and that they recognized it.

  8. To continue my last point:

    The registry contains no information on illegal firearms, or LEGALLY borrowed firearms. In Canada it is perfectly legal for one individual with a firearms licence to borrow a firearm from another licenced individual.

    Lets say i am licenced but don't own a firearm. I LEGALLY borrow a shotgun from a friend, and have it at my house stored in accordance to Canada's storage laws. Now, for whatever reason, the police are called to my house. By Blair's assertion, the address the officer is responding to will be checked against the registry, Here's where his argument falls apart: Even though I am currently in LEGAL possession of a shotgun, the registry check will show NO FIREARMS at my house, because I don't OWN any.

    Now, had the officer run a simple firearms LICENCE check against my address through CPIC, it would sho someone at my address was licenced to own/be in possession of a firearm. That is a much more accurate check

    • Get off the computer and get back to work, constable.

    • Its a great wat for chief Miller to make the headlines in the red star. you know, savage an old guy's gun collection, have a press conference, etc.

    • Does anyone care to respond to Matthew's arguments?

      Too much to ask I suppose…..

    • Matthew, get used to the left's responses if you are not already. They care nothing about what you are saying, as facts or excellent points like you posted don't enter into the cloud dweller thoughts, only that it is against what they "feel" in their world. Their response is ad hominems or to attack you personally not factually refute what you wrote.

  9. I would hope that Canada's police would be more cautious than just using the highly faulty Firearms Registry when entering a premises. With only 7 million firearms registered out of an estimated 20 million in Canada and only 530,000 registered owners out of millions, the Registry could hardly be considered accurate enough to be a viable tool for the police. How would they know if there were undeclared firearms on a given premises. An owner could neglect to register his or her more powerful weapons or their more valuable weapons for fear of confiscation.

    As for Mr. Breitkreuz, perhaps one of Ms. Guergis' old staffers wrote the press release for him and, like her, he was unaware.


    • Wait, does that mean Colby's earlier column makes Garry a terrorist?

  10. It seems like pandering to the base brought the registry in and pandering to the base will nix it.

    Gotta love politics. Why this issue is a vote changer for anyone is beyond me.

  11. Gross has a new movie out called "gunless". It's a Canadian tradition that guns are not valued but we understand how dangerous they are, the movie is a comedic way of showing how different Canadians and our American cousins view the "power" of the gun. To focus on long guns as different from other guns is short-sighted in terms of their lethal powers just as thinking that the privacy of ownership is in any way of value. I mean this whole this boils down to registration vs privacy of ownership and if you own a gun (long or otherwise) in Canada, we all want to know about it (the government).

  12. The Conservatives always seem to find a way to mess up. Just when the public was getting fed up with Helena Guergis, another MP screws up and makes them look bad. And once again our PM will defend said PM until it's no longer politically expedient.

    See Ignatieff and Harper in action in QP over this issue at http://battlelight.blogspot.com.

  13. All public safety opportunities come from the human element, and not from inanimate objects. The LICENSE, not the registry is the means of revocation in the event of a public safety concern. Firearm registration is a canard, and is expensive to boot. The registry was a mistake from the outset, and C391 is a good start — though Mr. Breitkreuz's C301 was a much better piece of legislation as it went much further at rationalizing what turned out to be a badly flawed piece of legislation.

  14. In the end, why in hell do duck hunters, farmers think they should get special treatment?

    Why can't they be grown ups a compromise?

    How hard can it be.

    I don't want to hear about costs either after $100 million spent on self-promoting and unnecessary ads about the Economic Action Plan.

    • How about the $300 millions that was given to lobbyist Wendy Cukier… so that she could lobby the government that pai her?

    • The problem is that hunters and farmers ARE getting special treatment. Even after completing the background checks, reference checks, and competency course, firearm owners are treated as 'criminals in waiting' for no reason other than owning a firearm.

  15. "In the 1950s, buggery was a criminal offence. Now it's a requirement to receive benefits from the federal government."

    – Yorkton-Melville Conservative MP Garry Breitkreuz commenting on same sex benefits, The Leader-Post, March 3, 2000.

    "We should try to keep our mothers in the home and that's where the whole Reform platform hangs together."

    – Garry Breitkreuz, Conservative MP for Yorkton-Melville, in the Vancouver Province, October 11, 1993.

    Gosh, Breitkreuz is a real charmer.

  16. An officer that put its trust in the gun registry… is a dead officer, it's a well known fact.

    Just ask the colleague of officer Valerie Gignac from the Laval PD who was shot and killed by a guy on a firearm prohibition order. The CPIC/Gun registry query showed no gun at that address. But some criminal friendly judge had decided to allow the guy to have one rifle for hunting season… Because she trusted the system and let her guard down, she paid with her life.

    How about constable Daniel Tessier (Laval again), when his team made a dynamic entry for a drug raid… The Gun Registry told them there wasn't suppose to be any firearms at that location. Next thing you know, Basil Parasiris shot and killed the officer.

    The gun registry is a liability that gives a false sense of security to front line officers.

    • Do you have any evidence that those officers were shot because they used the registry? I find it hard to believe that officers would fully let their guard down in situations like that, but I am not familiar with those 2 cases.

    • Which all supports Matthew's assertion above: police officers always assume there are weapons on premises.

  17. Although I do have some reservations about having to register hunting rifles, when it comes to hand guns, I have none, melt em all down.

    When it comes to Breitkruitz or whatever his name is, I also have no doubt whatsoever….

    He should have been down on the White House front lawn the other day with all those nuts dressed in full camo, carrying bazookas and calling their government communist.

    He would have fit right in.

    Canada's Charlton Heston.

  18. Nerwrong,

    To insinuate that a handgun is somehow more dangerous than a long gun… Makes as much sense as saying that a scooter is somehow more dangerous then a pick up truck… Because we all know scooters are more agile in traffic then a truck… Therefore, they could be used by thieves to 'sneak' away…

    If you think that 'melting' all legally bought and registered handguns would make them disappear… I have some bad news for you. Handguns, like most other objects, are mam-made items. Any body with the will to do so, could produce them.

    Heck, the CIA and FBI have reported many instances where criminal organization were running small machine shop producing illegal revolvers… and all revolvers had the exact same marking/serial numbers… to better confused the system!

    What should we do next? Create a machine shop registry? Impose a national ban on raw steel?!?

    • Yes, there's no difference in the danger posed by a rifle as compared to a handgun. I can just as easily walk past a concierge in a building, get in to the elevator, go to the floor of the person I want to shoot and walk into the room they're sitting in all without anyone noticing anything out of the ordinary, carrying a rifle, as I could with a revolver in my pocket.

      In your scooter analogy, the scooter is ABSOLUTELY more dangerous on a roadway the truck can't fit on. A truck can't do any damage at all in a place it can't get to.

      • Too bad that concierge wasn't at Ecole Polytechnique or Dawson College. He could have easily stopped the lunatics with rifles as they entered the front door that day.

  19. Why does anybody need a handgun?

    • I don't "need" a handgun. I also don't "need" to justify why I have one.

  20. Why does anybody need a sport car?…
    Sport cars are designed to go above the authorized speed limits… therefore they should be banned…

    Why doesn anybody need a 42" plasme TV?…
    These TV consume more energy, which is bad for the environment… therefore they should be banned…

    Why does anybody need alcohol?…
    Alcohol doesn't serve any meaningful purposes, and thousands of lives are shatered each year because of it… therefore it should be banned….

    Any other question?

    • Well, the car has to be registered, and alcohol is sold under license with age and usage requirements.
      The TV example is just silly.

      The gun, whic is regulated much like alcohol, is the only one of these items designed and engineered to kill a human being. So why do you need THAT?

      • M_A_N

        You will need to brush up on your motor vehicle act knowledge… There is no need to register a car, unless you want to drive it on public road. Just like you do not need a drivers license to drive a car, unless you want to drive it on public road.

        Even though thousands of Canadians are killed each year because of alcohol, you only need to show a picture ID to buy it (and don't get me started on business that sell to underage teenagers)… You can buy as much as you want… You can take it where ever you want… and you don't know government approval to make your own.


        Firearms are designed to fire a bullet at high speed…
        Knives are designed to cut…
        Hammer are designed to strike…


        How you want to use them, is up to you.

        A visit to your local court house would tell you that just about any objects has been used as a weapon.

        Should we register everything?

        • Ah. You want handguns to mount on your wall? Great. Just fill the barrel with cement, and we're all happy.

          Again, knives can also cut steaks, and hammers can also drive nails, or be used as a weapon.

          Handguns are weapons. No other point to owning one. But I won't poke this bear any further Mamma always yold me not to argue about religion or guns. They're really the same thing.

  21. Handgun hunting used to be perfectly legal.

    That is, until a certain Mr. Trudeau decided otherwise… without providing any reason whatsoever, other then the fact that he didn't like it.

  22. My biggest quip with this whole "gun registry" debate is that while we are wasting time and money trying to monitor objects… nothing is been done to address the root of the problem… which are, violence and aggression.

    It is just a matter of time before our psychopath-lunatics realize that more damage can be done with home made explosive… then with any kind of firearms… What will we do then?

    As an example, in Montreal, street thugs have just realize that arson is a much easier way to settle scores then a gun… Fuel is readily available and so are containers… A crashing bottle will not draw as much attention as a gun shot… and fire will destroy any finger prints that could be used against you…


    As for the truck/scooter analogy, it was more of a 'tong in the cheek' comments… as there are far more cases of people getting hurt/killed/maimed in road rage incident involving a truck… then involving a scooter…

  23. Ignatieff wants to demonize millions of 'rural Canadians'.

    Who is Michael Ignatieff, that he can adopt such sudden moral indignation over Breitkreuz or his staff's condemnation of a political organization that clearly accepts large donations from a business entity that directly benefits financially from the registry. This, the very same registry that this organization of police chiefs so rabidly defends?

    Surely, the press hasn't already forgotten that the CAPC ethics adviser resigned over this very issue?

    • Well, he is willing to demonize rural Canadians to pander to last great bastion of Liberal Power- Toronto Lefty's (or more accurately within this community, those in the left that have absolutely no time to ponder the effectiveness of left-wing social policy – the shallow Left

      Iggy says he will decriminalize non-registration of firearms essentially making the registry completely useless from any angle. The registry under Iggy's proposal is just a prop – at best ,a terribly implemented method of taxation that won't even recoup the cost of its own implementation.

      But go for it Iggy – Whip away!

  24. John,

    If you dig around for the coroner's report, you'll find that.

    – Const. Gignac had gone to that apartment multiple time, prior to the latest intervention the registry had been queried and showed the man was under a firearm prohibition order and all of his firearm had been confiscated. Has she was standing in front of the door trying to reason with him… the lunatic fired through the door and killed her… A judge had allowed him to keep a hunting rifle at home for the moose hunting season. This information was not available through the system.

    – Const. Daniel Tessier was shot in the head while his team was doing a dynamic entry at a suspect house. The raid was authorized since their wasn't suppose to be any firearm at that location… Unfortunately for Const. Tessier, the man they wanted to arrest had a revolver (legally bought and registered)… but for a reason or another, it was still registered at his old address… therefore it didn't show up in their queries.

    If you look through police records, you will find that more police officers have been killed by firearm in the last decade or so, then at any other time in the last century.

    • On the Tessier case I would again point out >this article.

      "A thorough verification of the gun registry before Laval police carried out a botched drug raid could have spared the life of Const. Daniel Tessier, says the provincial workplace health and safety commission".

      • How many times does an officer need to query the system before the officer can make a decision?

        At which point does an officer 'trust' the information?

        If the information is known to be flawed and incomplete, what's the point of searching within that database?

        The whole point of point of the registry was that the police 'could' have access to this kind of information quickly…

        Than again, a whole discussion could also be started about the validity of doing a "dynamic entry" at dawn… when the police could have just arrested the guy when he walked out of his house… but that's a different story.


        – How about the Mayerthorpe shooting? There wasn't suppose to be any guns at that location and James Roszko was prohibited from legally possessing firearms. Next thing you know, officer Peter Schiemann, Anthony Gordon, Lionide Johnston, and Brock Myrol lost their lives.

      • "Thorough verification"

        These words haunt me. Thank you.

  25. Breitkreuz is being Breitkreuz. The same Breitkreuz that did not show up in the house when C-301 did.

  26. Any police chief worth his/her salt wants more than just a gun registry … they'd blood type registry us, DNA registry us, and stamp a BAR code on everybody's forehead if they could … it'd make their job easier, increase budgets, and build more layers of job security. Typical bureaucrats!

    In the meanwhile, the rank and file officer knows better, because he/she isn't a bureaucrat and actually works with and among the folks. They know that a gun registry doesn't provide some sort of digital force field to protect them from the unknown … and that trusting it means a more likely trip to the cathedral.

  27. […cont]

    As you well know opposition to the gun registry is strictly a POLITICAL response by Conservatives looking to milk their base for support and dollars, and for the gun lobby to protect its business and was against the easy target of the non Conservative voters of urban Canada. Opposition serves no purpose, just another plank on the corporate state controlling the lives of our citizens and gun lobby who don't care about crime if it means losing a few dollars.

    • So, how is Mayerthorp working for you you MORON!

      • Why do you hate our cops, Gary? Stop working against our cops, Gary.

  28. No police officer acts differently when going to a domestic dispute just because the gun registry says there is a gun at the premises. They always assume the worst. Also no police officer killed since the gun registry started was helped by the gun registry data base. Not one. And there have been more police deaths from shooting since the gun registry than ever occurred before.

  29. A 'first time' amnesty and incurring more cost doesn't fundamentally change a thing about the registry, and Mr. Ignatieff knows it. The registry will still be the useless, expensive vision of Liberal regulatory control misplaced in Criminal Code that it was from the start, with all of its attendant abuses. All of the the reasons that put C-391 on the way becoming law still exist despite Ignatieff's 'compromise'.

    This is why Ignatieff still has to use the whip. If his changes were reasonable, he could put his weapon down because people would agree.

    Ditch the registry and keep licensing – that's what does all the screening and training work anyhow. 94% of firearms crime is done by unlicensed people with unregistered handguns (Stats Can). Dropping the useless and hated long gun registry and its attendant threat of mass prohibition (the Liberals have attempted two mass confiscations in the past decade) will put peaceful Canadians at ease without any cost to public safety.

  30. I'm a middle aged, middle class, university eductated, home owning, urban white collar professional. I pay my taxes and abide by the law, and have no criminal record.

    Why should you care if I legally own a gun? What business is it of yours?