Volume 7, Number 3 September 2001
Greetings fellow firearm enthusiasts! It is an honour and a pleasure to have been chosen to serve as TSCON's President again. My thanks go out to past President Gerry Gamble for all of his hard work during the last few years. Thanks to his good stewardship we continue to have successful gun shows, a few dollars in the bank, and a first rate organization capable and dedicated to exposing the truth.
We are entering the long and potentially drawn out time between federal elections. This does not mean TSCON is going to go to sleep! We continue to monitor the gun control situation and will be quick to advise you of anything important. We will continue to meet weekly to discuss current events, exchange ideas and conduct activities designed to bring common sense back into Canadian gun control policy. Why not come out and help us?
Internationally, the United Nations summit on small arms was a flop (details follow). The United States rescued us law-abiding gun owners by blocking most of the resolutions put forward by the mostly anti-gun panel. As one observer said, this "drove a stake right through their hearts". But like freaks from a bad horror movie - Wendy Cukier and her fellow goblins have promised to resurrect themselves to meet again in five years. They will be back looking to drain you of your freedom in 2006.
Locally, two prominent cases against local gun owners have been thrown out due to lack of evidence and government foot dragging! These cases were front-page news when they first occurred, but the dismissal of the charges was never even mentioned outside of court. How typical of our biased/incompetent media. Shame!
Registration is coming! All guns have to be registered by the end of next year. What are you going to do? Register all, some or none of your firearms? Hmm? Future editions of this newsletter will detail the pros and cons of all the options. Stay tuned.
Unfortunately, space does not permit us to bring you all the gun control news we would like. There are just too many stories that high-lite the failings of the Firearms Act to print. I strongly recommend you get on the Internet so you can see these news stories for yourself! We can provide you with the knowledge of where to find them! You would be amazed.
Lastly, if you are too busy to play a hands-on role in bringing the Firearms Act down - give money instead. Renew your TSCON membership. Sign up for a National Firearms Association (NFA) and a Canadian Institute for Legislative Action (CILA) one too! These are all organizations fighting to protect your rights and property. They deserve your support!
Till next time,
John A. Gayder
In July, 2001 a United Nations conference was held to address the problem of illicit small arms in world conflicts, or so they said. What it ended up as was a cry fest by a bunch of whiners about how firearms are responsible for the downfall of society. Contrary to their propaganda stating that legal gun owners have nothing to fear, many countries tried desperately to push for agreement on measures that would have effectively stripped citizens of member countries of their right to own firearms. For example, the Irish delegate (you know Ireland, where you can get murdered just because you're the wrong religion) said that "States must stop exporting of small arms and light weapons to all except other governments. All states must suppress private ownership of small arms and light weapons". If I'm not mistaken that sounds they don't want me owning guns, and I'm no terrorist. The Canadian delegate, some flunky MP named Rey Pagtakhan from Manitoba started his address by stating that "Small arms are truly weapons of mass destruction". I thought atomic bombs were weapons of mass destruction. I wonder what Pagtakhan thinks they are?
In the end, the Americans saved the day (thank God they have the balls to stand up to the rest of the world. Obviously Canada doesn't). Plain and simple they refused to agree to any regulations that would infringe on the right of individuals to bear arms.
Without the agreement of the U.S. the rest of the delegates were essentially powerless to enact any edicts that would enable government despots to disarm their citizens. It would have been another story had anti-gun Al Gore been elected. George Bush, on the other hand is very pro-gun as is his Attorney-General (and NRA member) John Ashcroft.
The concept of the United Nations used to be a good one, but more and more it has turned into a forum for tin pot dictators from 3rd world countries to plan their own agendas. For example, one of the main ideas being pushed was to prohibit countries from providing arms to non-governmental agencies. This means, for example, that the United States would be prevented from supplying arms to rebels trying to overthrow Saddam Hussein. It is also interesting to note that of the 160 odd countries that attended the conference, about 80% are underdeveloped 2nd and 3rd world nations, many of the leaders of which gained power by armed rebellion against previous governments. Now that they are in power, however, they don't want the same thing to happen to them and are attempting to disarm the citizens to ensure their survival, which often is accompanied by torture, lack of fair trials, genocide, and no elections.
This may seem far removed from us, but there are a few things you can do. For example, don't donate money to any United Nations agencies like UNICEF. When the UN appeals to you for cash, return the appeal with a nasty note that you don't need 3rd world dictators telling you that you shouldn't have firearms. Maybe if they get enough responses they will wise up to the fact that we are more interested in protecting our rights than we are in what is good for them.
If you have not received your PAL or POL (even if you applied before Jan. 1, 2001) you are now a criminal in the eyes of the law. Exhibiting their usual stupidity and stubbornness, the Liberal government refused to officially extend the amnesty period for people who applied for licences by Dec. 31/00 but have yet to receive them. Thus, when the amnesty expired on June 30, 2001, if you did not possess your permanent licence, when you woke up on Canada Day you were a criminal.
The government is now saying that they are asking the police not to charge you as long as you can prove you applied before the Dec. 31/00 deadline. How do you prove that? Remember when we said to save photocopies of everything you sent in with your application? Now you know why. The bottom line is, if you run into an unsympathetic or uninformed police officer, they are perfectly within their rights to charge you with possessing firearms without a licence and confiscate your guns. Yes, you will likely beat the charge in court but do you have thousand of dollars to spend to prove your innocence? Like most of us you probably don't.
What do you do now? First, dig up any evidence such as photocopies or canceled cheques that prove you applied by the deadline. Fortunately, despite the fact that the government is issuing licences at a snail's pace, they cashed the cheques like a rocket. If you get your cheques back, make photocopies and keep them in a safe place. If you only get bank statements or have a passbook, make copies of those and store them safely.
The next thing to do is call the Canadian Firearms Centre (1-800-731-4000) and scream like hell that their foot-dragging is making you into a criminal. Experience seems to be showing that people who raise a stink are getting their licences a lot faster. Call every day if need be until it is issued. Don't let them tell you that you won't be charged if you have proof you sent in the application. That is not true! Tell them you know the law and it says you must be in possession of your permanent licence by now to avoid legal problems. If you get no satisfaction from the person you are speaking to, ask for their supervisor and tell them the same thing. Get names and document the times and dates of your calls.
Call the Chief Firearms Officer of Ontario (1-800-731-4000 Ext. 7502) and demand your licence for the same reasons listed above.
Lastly, call your MP. I know it seems useless to call puppets like Lastewka and Pillitteri but they voted for this mess which is now turning you into a criminal so ask them what they are going to do about it.
Still desperate to get people to comply, the government has announced (surprise!) three more extensions.
The $25 transfer fee has been waived till (get this) Jan. 1, 2003. This was done because many people are simply not bothering to officially transfer any long guns they are acquiring (would you spend $25 to register a $35 Cooey rifle?). Should you register your transfers now because it is free? We don't think so. Remember that once a firearm is registered the government can start charging as much as they want for further transfers because they now know who has the gun. Also, it is much less complicated to loan or lease firearms and worry about registering them 16 months from now when you are supposed to. At that point in time the strategy of registering as "Unknown" will come into play and from all appearances that should effectively delay registration for years. Don't jump at this government "loss leader". As with everything else they have done, it is not designed to benefit you.
The second extension is the amnesty on unregistered handguns. If you have an unregistered handgun you can register it without fear of reprisal up to Dec. 31, 2001. You will, however, need an FAC or PAL that allows you to own restricted firearms. This does not apply to grandfathered prohibited firearms like short barreled handguns. If you happen to own one of these you do have a few options which space does not permit us to explain here. If you are in either of these situations and need further assistance, call a member of the Executive. No names or phone numbers need to be given.
The last extension deals with prohibited handguns purchased after Feb. 14, 1995 but before Dec. 1, 1998. Originally these were supposed to be turned in for destruction but after realizing that some 50,000 or more guns were involved the government chickened out and it appears that the owners will be able to keep them after all. This was to be dealt with in Bill C-15 which died on the order table when the MPs broke for their ususal 3 month summer holiday. It is supposed to be resurrected in the fall and should be passed before the new Dec. 31, 2001 deadline. Therefore, if you have one of these guns, just sit tight and do nothing for now. And as always, if you have any questions, call us.
It has come to our attention that many target shooters, collectors and hunters are in possession of firearms that can be de-registered. This has occurred due to a change in the federal firearms policy which created a new category of guns which are now deemed to be "Antique Firearms" and, as such, do not require registration or a licence to possess them. These firearms are now considered non-guns so the only rules that apply to them are those for storage, transportation and criminal misuse (for example, in the commission of a crime).
Included under the new definitions of "Antique Firearms" are many handguns which may be currently registered but as antiques do not require registration. The government will not, however, inform you of this and it is up to you to determine the status of these firearms. If they qualify you can then apply to de-register them.
Antique firearms are those which were manufactured prior to 1898 that meet the definition of prescribed antique firearms. Many old handguns now meet the definition of "Antiques". Examples of these would be Smith & Wesson or Colt originals in black powder and early cartridge cases of non-typical calibres such as 44 Russian, and older .25, .30. .32 and .41 rimfire pistols from numerous manufacturers. (However, that none of the .22 rimfire cartridges (short, long or long rifle) are considered antiques). Many older Webleys, Nagants, Type 96 Nambus and Mausers are antiques as are old pinfire pistols. So check those old guns you have lying around as you might be able to avoid this whole registration mess.
Forms which outline antique firearm definitions and de-registration forms are available by calling the Canadian Firearms Centre or can be obtained at the TSCON information table at our gun shows.
After absorbing lots of flak about the stupidity of allowing many air guns to be classified as "firearms", the CFC has made yet another attempt to clarify the situation. Whereas the previous definition turned air guns or paintball guns into firearms if they exceeded a muzzle velocity of 152.4 metres (500 feet) per second or 5.7 joules of energy (which would have turned nearly all paintball guns and most air guns firing lightweight pellets into firearms), the newly proposed amendments state that both the velocity (152.4 m/second) and energy (5.7 joules) values must be exceeded to cause air guns or paintball guns to be classified as firearms.
Let's hope that this of nonsense can finally be laid to rest. And they still can't figure out why no one has any confidence in the government's ability to implement any type of effective firearms control.
In the last issue we outlined how to go about legally importing firearms and ammunition. There was, however, one omission regarding the importation of restricted firearms like handguns. While Canada Customs will not give you any problems, the Chief Firearms Officer of Ontario will require that after you import the firearm it must be inspected by a government verifier. At last check there were only three verifiers in the Niagara Region (gee, nobody wants the job?) But the personnel keeps changing so you will have to call the CFC to find out who is still doing verifications locally.
Thanks to member PL for bringing this to our attention. In several previous issues we have outlined the procedure for applying for alternate licencing to avoid taking the Canadian Firearms Safety Course and/or written test. It has come to our attention that the CFO's office is trying to discourage people from taking the test in this manner by telling people that there is a four month wait to take the test, that hardly anyone passes it and by generally being uncooperative. Please keep in mind that you have the right to take the test this way if you so choose and there is nothing they can do about it. It is free and if you fail the worst thing that can happen is that you will have to take the written test at a later date. Why they are being uncooperative is anyone's guess. Obviously it takes time, manpower and money from their budget when people apply in this manner. It is interesting, however, that the CFO is discouraging qualified and skilled gun owners from exercising their right to take the oral test while the police in general have an abysmal record both in shooting ability and accidental shootings (much worse than the public at large). It would be nice if they got their priorities straight for a change and gave less grief to the law-abiding while spending more time finding real bad guys or teaching their own officers to become at least moderately proficient with their firearms.
Another gem from our friend MP Garry Breitkreuz
At one time Cooey made a rifle which they marketed as a "Ranger". While the name "Cooey" appeared nowhere on the gun it was manufactured by Cooey so the make was still "Cooey". The CFC, however, has decided that since the only name on the gun is "Ranger" they will list both the make and model of the gun as "Ranger" in their firearms identification data base. This flies in the face of logic since there was no "Ranger" gun company. To make matters worse, Winchester also marketed an economy line of rifles under the model name "Ranger".
Therefore, when a verifier (not you, that is his job) identifies the make of such a gun as "Ranger" they will have made a false statement on the registration form, a criminal offence. This is why we will continue to advise people to register all their firearms as "Unknown" when the time comes to register if you choose to do so. Then sit back and watch the fun!
The following people are on the Executive of "The Sporting Clubs of Niagara" for the year 2001:
(Save for future reference)
President John Gayder
1st Vice-President Bob LeGrand
2nd Vice-President James Houlden
Secretary Vern Ann Faber
Treasurer Gilbert Pinney
Gun Show ChairmanTed Valliere
Membership Chairman and Past President Gerry Gamble
We now have available for sale our popular "The Sporting Clubs of Niagara" t-shirts and sweat shirts. Both are very good quality an are available as follows:
T-shirts - XL $16
T-shirts - XXL $18
Sweats - XL $20
Sweats - XXL $22
Available at the gun show or from any member of the Executive.
If you received a 2002 membership card in this mailing you are not a paid up member of TSCON. Help us continue our work by supporting TSCON with a membership. Just $10 a year! Aren't your guns worth it?
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 and, best of all, are cheap, only $2.00 each. You won't find a better price anywhere! Pick them up at the club table at the gun show or call any member of the Executive. We can provide large quantities if you need them.
One of our sharp-eyed Executive members noticed that the Book Depot on Welland Avenue in St. Catharines often has large numbers of gun, knife and archery books for sale at discounted prices. They are in the Sports section but are spread out all over so you will have to search the whole section to see what is available. Happy shopping!
Please note the new location for our gun shows:
Merritton Community Centre
7 Park Ave.
2001 gun show dates are:
Sept. 14 Dec. 14
If you would like tables at our next show (Sept. 14, 2001), you should contact Ted Valliere right away at 905-935-3893 (please note Ted's new phone number). Our first two shows at this location was so successful that we did not have tables for all our vendors. If you want tables, call early!
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
Classified ads for shooting and hunting related items are free for members. Please call 905-685-4480 and submit ads by the following dates for inclusion in the latest newsletter:
Vol. 7 #4 November 1/01
Vol. 8 #1 January 15/02
For Sale: Smith & Wesson Model 28 Revolver, .357, 6" barrel, heavy frame, as new, $275 or offer. For sale or loan: J.C. Higgins Model 20 12 gauge pump gun, 26" barrel, adjustable choke, takes 2 3/4" shells, good condition, $150; call Gerry 905-685-4480
Wanted: Top receiver mount peep sight for a Winchester Model 71 Special Grade rifle: call Bodo 905-934-2532
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.
For address changes, duplicate mailings, removal of a name from the mailing list or if you want a newsletter call 685-4480.
General 905-685-4480 905-937-2301 Memberships 905-685-4480 Gun Show 905-935-3893 FAX 905-934-8039 Mail Box 21047 St. Catharines, ON L2M 7X2
The following members are winners in our latest draw. Please call Gerry at 905-685-4480 to arrange to pick up your prize.
Winner Prize Donated By Bob Dunn - St. Catharines TSCON T-shirt The Sporting Clubs of Niagara Paul Julian - Niagara Falls Stihl pocket knife Niagara Saw James Book - Beamsville Gun Cleaning Kit Frontier Gun and Sport Fred Willick - St. Catharines TSCON 2002 Membership The Sporting Clubs of Niagara
Merritton Community Centre, 7 Park Ave., St. Catharines
For tables call Ted @ 905-935-3893