Thursday, October 7, 2010

Bruce Montague-Profile in Courage

With a tip of the hat to David Hardy of the blog Of Arms and the Law comes the story of Bruce Montague, a brave Canadian who has been challenging their Firearms Act, and is now in danger of forfeiting his house. Go read the website.

I would note that the Ontario Attorney General is showing all the "compassion" we have come to expect from the gun grabbers. Putting Bruce in jail for flouting the law is, if not justified, at least expected. But to take his house, put his wife on the street, and endanger his children's education is the sort of thing one expects of a Mexican drug cartel, not a Western liberal democracy.   Can it truly be that mere possession of inanimate objects by someone who has no intention of using them to commit an actual crime justifies such harsh punishment of not only the man, but innocent bystanders as well?

A person who fears, say, screw drivers, and who constantly rails that these dangerous objects need to be controlled, their owners licensed, and that anyone who wants one needs to be treated like a criminal would be considered slightly daft.  If the screwdriver-phobe suggested that the police waste their time by registering all the screwdrivers as a crime fighting measure, most people would conclude that he was, to use a technical term, nuts.  Never mind that it is true that screw drivers are used to murder people, and so our screwdriver-phobe does have a point.  But screwdrivers also have benefits to society, enabling the fastening of objects together in such a way that they can subsequently be easily taken apart.  Rational people recognize that the correct use of screwdrivers is vastly more useful to society than their misuse is harmful.  People also recognize that most of their fellow men will use screwdrivers correctly.

So, why then do people take notice of hoplophobes who rail that guns should be controlled?  True, guns can be used to kill, but the presence of guns possessed by people who become targets of criminal attack save vastly more lives.  Read John Lott's More Guns, Less Crime.  Two neighbors might work on a project together, with screwdrivers, hammers, and wrenches within reach of either of them, and nobody thinks for even a second that one of the neighbors might kill the other.  But suddenly when we are talking about a gun, visions of the gun taking over and making one of our neighbors homicidal come to mind.  Why?  Keep in mind too, that the greater power of a gun compared to a screwdriver only means that more precautions should be used when handling them, just as a table saw requires greater awareness and precaution.  Such awareness and precaution are easily within the power of the ordinary man or woman.

What I suspect it is, is that professional politicians are, at best, busy body nannies who view themselves as more knowledgeable about how you should live your life than you.  Of course, they can't control criminals, but they won't take responsibility for what happens to you if you are legally disarmed either.  So why not give free reign to their natural proclivities?  Add to this mix a media that seeks to sensationalize rather than inform, to give vent to the extremes rather than present the normal, and you have the makings of of a witches brew for the average citizen.  If, on the other hand, politicians were truly responsible for their actions, unjust laws like Canada's Firearms Act would never be passed in the first place.

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