Sunday, September 02, 2012

The Great Canadian Gun Swap...Wither Thou, NRA?


According to a spokesman for the innocuously-named 'Canadian Shooting Sports Association', Mr. Tony Bernardo, Canadian gun owners are a little bit sick.

Sick, that is, of all these injunctions that are trying to help regional governments keep track of where the long guns are.

So, Mr. Bernardo wants gun owners to pass their virulence around.

The following is from the CBC's report from late last week:

Owners of registered long guns are being encouraged to swap their firearms with each other to show that the data in the federal long-gun registry is "useless."

The Canadian Shooting Sports Association says its campaign, the Great Canadian Gun Registry Shuffle, is meant to counter anti-gun advocates who are "spitting in the face of Canada's legal system by deliberately ignoring the will of Parliament in an attempt to preserve registry data for future use."...

{snippety doo-dah}

..."The firearms owners of Canada are a little bit sick of all this injunction stuff," Tony Bernardo, spokesman for the group, said in an interview. "The House of Commons has spoken, the law of the land says there is no long-gun registry and because of that we think that the people that are opposing the destruction of the data should be obeying the law just like we had to."

"The registry data was never any good to begin with and what we want to do is make sure that if there's any shred of doubt out there at all, that that shred of doubt is removed," he said.

Bernardo said the data in the registry identifies a gun with a particular person. Now that the registration requirement doesn't exist that connection is broken. Bernardo said the idea of the shuffle is to ensure that "any data that is left inside the registry is completely garbage."...

But here's the thing.

Back in the days before the national long gun registry was scrapped, the good Mr. Bernardo worked with another, related, even more innocuously named gun advocacy outfit, the 'Canadian Institute for Legislative Action', that did a whole lot of out-front wurlitzering that helped make it possible for Mr. Harper and friends, friends like Conservative MP Mr. Garry Breitkreuz,  to throw a sop to their base while they simultaneously handcuffed 'cultish' cops who sometimes have to go into buildings where long guns might, or might not, be present.

And we wrote about that august group of innocuous sounding legislative agitators awhile back.


Because it turns out that they got a whole lot of help from....

Wait for it...

The even more august American group...

 The NRA.


(The following is from our CBC-assisted report from May of this year)

Did Mr. Harper Get A Little Help From His NRA Friends...


...With One Of His 'Accomplishments'?

"....The Conservatives proudly point to a string of promises that have been kept (during the first year of their majority): passage of the omnibus crime bill; the abolition of the long-gun registry; and the dismantling of the Canadian Wheat Board..."

"...The National Rifle Association (NRA), a powerful lobbying group in the United States that advocates fewer gun controls, has been actively involved in trying to abolish Canada's long-gun registry for more than a decade, CBC News has learned.

Documents and correspondence obtained by the CBC show the NRA has provided logistical and tactical support to organizations such as the Canadian Institute for Legislative Action (CILA), established in 1998 to lobby Ottawa to shut down the registry.

The NRA provides the Canadian gun lobby group with "tremendous amounts of logistical support," and while the NRA's constitution prevents them from providing money, "they freely give us anything else," Tony Bernardo, an Ontario gun advocate and CILA's executive director, said in Canadian Firearms Digest in July 2001...

{snippety doo-dah}

...In 2000, the NRA paid $100,000 for an infomercial about what it called "the Canadian situation" that aired on The National Network in the U.S., according to Bernardo, who appeared in the video....

It cautioned gun owners the registry was a government plot to find out how many guns there were in order to seize them and leave citizens helpless to defend themselves.

Bernardo, a frequent guest on NRA chat shows updating U.S. gun owners on the fight to kill the Canadian registry, said the NRA was instrumental in helping him set up his Canadian lobby group, CILA, the lobbying arm of the Canadian Shooting Sports Association (CSSA), and a mirror group of the Institute for Legislative Action, the NRA's lobbying arm...

{snippety doodle-dandy}

....In 2005, NRA strategist Glen Caroline came to Canada to provide logistical support in the form of "political action" training for an upcoming federal election.

"Who better to show us how to protect our rights," said the CSSA's promotional material for the event, "than the most powerful lobby group in the world, the National Rifle Association?"

In 2006, former NRA president Sandra Froman was the featured keynote speaker at the CSSA annual meeting in Toronto. Conservative MP Garry Breitkreuz co-hosted the town hall meeting for the event.

Earlier this year (2010), (Conservative MP) Breitkreuz also found himself in hot water when a news release from his office called the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police a "cult" and "politically motivated" for supporting the long-gun registry. He later apologized and forced the aide who sent it to resign...


A little bit 'sick'?


That was the good Mr. Bernardo's word, not mine.



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