It has been a busy couple of months since the last newsletter and several significant events have taken place which should be of great interest to gun owners. The recent shooting of four RCMP officers in Alberta was undoubtedly the most dramatic. I hesitate to even comment on this tragic event because using shooting deaths to advance a political agenda is a slimy technique best left to Wendy Cukier and those of her ilk.
That being said and staying as neutral as possible, the actual facts of the case are hard to debate. James Roszko was a convicted felon with a long record of violent criminal acts. If there ever was an individual who should not have owned guns it was him. Yet he had several of them, in fact, including the murder weapon which by all accounts was an H&K Model 91 .308 semi-automatic rifle. This is noteworthy because that particular firearm was placed in the prohibited 12(5) class, meaning that even law-abiding gun owners cannot own one unless they have special grandfathered status to do so.
The main argument that the Liberals have always given to justify the $2 billion Firearms Act is that it keeps guns away from those who should not have them. Yet that is exactly what it failed to do in this case. Even people who do not like guns must surely question the usefulness of the firearm registry if it can't keep guns out of the hands of even the most dangerous felons.
And in a conclusion that seems to be the norm in mass shootings, Roszko killed himself rather than being captured. Again, a rational person would observe that if someone is so disturbed as to commit a murder-suicide, are they likely to obey rules regarding firearm licensing and registration? We hardly think so.
Speaking of slimy, the Toronto Star (the only newspaper we know of that still seems to think the firearm registry is a good idea) had the gall to run an editorial titled "Callous activists exploit massacre", in which they accuse firearm activists of using the shooting as an excuse to question the usefulness of the registry. Excuse me but isn't this exactly what the anti-gunners did in the wake of the Ecole-Polytechnique shootings which led to Bill C-17 and the "Just Desserts" shooting that led to Bill C-68. To quote the editorial "one violent incident should not be allowed to undo the gun registry". Yet it was apparently OK for one violent incident to create the gun registry. It's amazing how the tune changes when the shoe is on the other foot!
A second shooting that gathered less press was in Red Lake, Minnesota, where a student killed several classmates and staff. As more details have come out it is apparent in this case as well that simplistic gun control measures like licencing and registration would have played no role in preventing the shootings. At 17, Jeff Wiese was not old enough to legally possess the handguns he used in the shootings. In fact, he obtained the guns by killing his grandfather who was a police officer. Wiese was a loner, picked on at school, had openly talked about suicide and committing this type of crime and frequented neo-Nazi and white supremacist websites. In short, he perfectly fit he profile of someone likely to commit such a crime. And not surprisingly, in the end he also killed himself.
As demonstrated by the vast majority of subsequent newspaper editorials, columns and letters to the editor, events like these are causing Canadians to increasingly question the wisdom of a gun control system that harasses the law-abiding while violent criminals run amok. That scepticism is a trend that you are likely to see continue as even those not directly affected by gun control legislation are now expressing serious reservations about its effectiveness.
Bruce Montague is coming to Niagara!! April 19/2005
On Tuesday, April 19, "The Sporting Clubs of Niagara" has arranged for Bruce Montague to speak at the Merritton Community Centre. If you are a gun owner who is concerned about where the Liberals are going with gun control you owe it to yourself to attend this event. Who is Bruce Montague and why is his case important? The following is an excerpt from the website www.brucemontague.ca
"Bruce Montague is an ordinary Canadian who has been charged under the Firearms Act. On September 11, 2004 Bruce was arrested and jailed for11 days for violation of the licensing and registration terms of the Firearms Act. Police officers then conducted a 36 hour search of the Montague home, seizing and confiscating his firearms, ammunition, computer and many other non-related things like binoculars, scopes and books.
What started this? Bruce is a model citizen with no criminal record, and has an excellent community and business reputation. But as a hunter and gunsmith from northern Ontario, Bruce Montague has boldly and actively opposed the Liberal's illegitimate gun law by nonviolent public protest and peaceful non-compliance. Why would someone intentionally challenge the law? Bruce is a man of character, integrity and conviction. Rather than comply with an unjust law, he has chosen to challenge it in court at enormous personal cost.
Why should you join Bruce Montague's fight to strike down the Firearms Act? Because his fight is your fight. If he loses we all lose. If we do not DEFEND our Rights and Freedoms NOW we will lose them forever."
Editor's Note: Bruce is originally from Niagara Falls. We have spoken to him several times. He is no wild-eyed radical, but a polite, soft-spoken family man who has taken on a difficult battle at great personal cost. Make no mistake: any one of us could be Bruce if the police decided to play hardball. It's happened before and will likely happen again. Please check his website and send him a donation. Most important, come out to hear him speak on April 19!!
Since the 1989 Ecole-Polytechnique shootings the anti-gun forces have clamoured to ban the Ruger Mini-14 for ‘symbolic reasons'. That lack of logic aside, the "Mini" has always presented the government with a problem. Unlike most banned firearms such as Uzis and AK-47's which are not that common, many thousands of Mini-14s are owned by law-abiding Canadians and are widely used for plinking and small game hunting. We are proud to say that the following chain of events occurred because of the actions of a long-standing member of TSCON who took some initiative and challenged the government.
In March /04 in response to rumours the Liberals were going to ban the Mini-14 our member wrote to Anne McLellan and specifically asked "Do you and/or your government now or at any time in the future intend in any way to act against the Mini-14 - yes or no?" As is typical, McLellan passed the buck and in Jan. /05 Justice Minister Irwin Cotler sent our member a response which stated in part that "The Government of Canada is committed to introducing legislation to prohibit the Ruger Mini-14 at the earliest opportunity during this session of Parliament."
Our member quickly contacted MP Garry Breitkreuz' office and the proverbial sh*t hit the fan. The information spread like wildfire first across the internet and then the papers. Within a week the backpedaling had begun. On Feb. 11/05 our member received a registered letter from Cotler's office stating in part that "..the Hon. Irwin Cotler, has asked me to write to you to clarify a letter to you dated January 27, 2005 concerning the Ruger Mini-14. The letter was inaccurate and sent to you in error." It continues "While the Government of Canada has stated its intention to prohibit the Ruger Mini-14, such prohibition is not being addressed at this time."
Our observations: The original letter was not sent "in error". They knew what they were doing. The Liberals are famous for floating trial balloons to see what the response is, and in this case it appears that they were shocked by the uproar. From this we should learn two things: First, if something happens that we don't like we need to scream long and hard about it. Second, note the wording "...prohibition is not being addressed at this time.", which means they will try again when they think they can get away with it. This should wake up anyone who thinks the Liberals have stopped pushing for more gun control. In reality, the only thing stopping them from making it worse is the minority government situation. This is why you should be coming out to hear Bruce Montague speak. Such nonsense will only stop when the Liberals are voted out of power.
In the past few issues we have kept you updated on the reloading regulations situation. This month Natural Resources Canada officials are meeting with the world sport shooting advisory board at their annual meeting after which a decision will be made whether any regulatory changes will be required. We'll let you as soon as we hear anything about this.
CPC Firearm Policy
The Conservative Party of Canada (CPC) just finished its first ever policy convention and some positive changes for gun owners were added to their firearm platform. Their policy now reads "A Conservative government will repeal Canada's costly gun registry legislation and work with the provinces on cost-effective gun control programs designed to keep guns out of the hands of criminals while respecting the rights of law-abiding Canadians to own and use guns responsibly. Measures will include: mandatory minimum sentences for the criminal use of firearms: strict monitoring of high-risk individuals; crackdown on the smuggling; safe storage provisions; firearms safety training; a certification screening system for all those wishing to acquire firearms legally: and putting more law-enforcement offices on our streets."
If your mailing label reads "04" or earlier or you received a 2005 membership card with this mailing you are not a paid up member for 2005. Please do it right now! The minority government situation means an election could be called anytime. In last year's election our financial resources allowed us to run several effective newspaper and radio ads that were well received by the voters. However, that left our treasury depleted. Now we may only have months to rebuild it before the next election rather than the usual three or four years.
Our main revenue sources are memberships and the gun shows, and the short time before a possible election reduces our income potential.
Help us to be financially prepared by renewing your 2005 membership. Maybe even throw in a few extra dollars as a donation if you can spare them. Membership is still just $10 a year! Aren't your guns worth it?
Gun Show Location and Dates
All gun shows are held at:
Merritton Community Centre, 7 Park Ave., St. Catharines
If you want tables for the April 29/05 show, contact John Orth right away at 905-562-7686. Shows are usually
sold out and often we do not have tables for all our vendors. If you want tables, call early! Confirmed dates
for our 2005 gun shows are:
Attention Gun Show Vendors
If you think you are going to be late to the gun show for any reason you should call John ASAP at the Merritton Community Centre 905-682-0098 so he can hold your tables. Otherwise, he may rent them to walk-in vendors after the 6:00 p.m. cutoff.
Trigger Locks for Sale
To help you comply with the safe storage laws The Sporting Clubs of Niagara has trigger locks for sale. They aren't fancy and they take a few seconds to put on and take off but they are legal. Locks are only $1.00 each! Pick them up at the club table at the gun show or call any member of the Executive. Large quantities available!
T Shirts and Sweat Shirts - Now in Blue
Our popular "The Sporting Clubs of Niagara" t-shirts and sweat shirts are now available in blue as well as gray and in a greater variety of sizes. Both are very good quality and available in the following sizes:
T-shirts M-XL $16
T-shirts XXL $18
Sweat shirts M-XL $20
Sweat shirts XXL $22
Get yours at the gun show or from any member of the Executive.
Hats and Crests
Available due to popular demand are our TSCON hats and crests. Prices are as follows:
Hats w/crest - $16
Crest only - $5
Hat & Crest - $20
They are available at the TSCON club table at all the gun shows or from any member of the Executive.
Free Classified Ads for Members
Classified ads for shooting and hunting related items are free for members. Please call 905-685-4480 and submit ads by the dates listed for inclusion in the next newsletter:
Vol. 11 #3 Aug. 15, 2005
Vol. 11 #4 Nov. 10, 2005
For Sale: Savage Model 99 lever action in 308 Win, gold tone trigger. Very good condition. Asking $500 or best offer; Alumacraft Trophy 170 boat, trailer and cover. 70hp Merc with low hours. many other extras makes this a fantastic fishing package. $8,000 O.B.O. Call Holly (905) 358-8536 Niagara Falls.
Wanted: Remington 1100 semi-auto shotgun in .410 gauge. Prefer one with a skeet barrel but will consider others. Must be in VG-EX condition and at a reasonable price. Call Gerry 905-685-4480
For Sale: Iver Johnson 12 ga, single shot, full choke, asking $50, call Peter 905-688-5221
TSCON Web Site
All our newsletters as well as other interesting and informative information are available on our web site:
Comments or suggestions?? Call John at 905-562-7686
General 905-685-4480 or 905-937-2301
Gun Show 905-562-7686
St. Catharines, ON
Where? St. Catharines Game and Fish Building, next to the boat ramp on Lighthouse Road in Port Dalhousie
When? Wednesdays, 7:00 pm.
Who? Members and non-members alike are welcome to attend.
Moved, Address Changes, Etc.
For address changes, duplicate mailings, removal from the mailing list or if you want a newsletter call 905-685-4480.
Quote of the Month
"Good people do not need laws to tell them to act responsibly, while bad people will always find a way around the laws." Plato
Draw Prize Winners
The following members are winners in our latest draw. Please call Gerry at 905-685-4480 to arrange to claim your prize.
Winner Prize Donated By Robert Stevenson, Hamilton TSCON T-shirt The Sporting Clubs of Niagara Eric Johnson, Grimsby Gun cleaning kit The Sporting Clubs of Niagara Terry Dilts, Fort Erie Pocket knife The Sporting Clubs of Niagara Walte Zimmerman, Caistor Ctr. Free PAL Test (transferrable) Firearms Education School (John Kellaway)
Buy, Sell or Trade, 100+ tables of Antique and Modern Firearms, Knives, Hunting Accessories and Gun Parts
For tables or information call:
John @ 905-562-7686