First it was all the fault of those damn Americans with their lax gun laws. If only the Americans passed gun control legislation similar to ours, then Toronto wouldnt be enjoying a bumper crop of gun crimes. Any fool can see that those guns killing all those young men are American. Thats very likely why Toronto Mayor David Miller is so clear in identifying some of the root causes of this crime wave.
His most recent inanity is that all gun owners should be forced to keep their guns in a secure central depository to be retrieved presumably on a loan-basis, as they are needed. Isnt it just like a socialist municipal politician to want to punish law-abiding people for crimes committed by outlaws? This would be analogous of a farmer beating his sheep because a fox was stealing chickens from his hen house.
Perhaps Mr. Miller is unaware of the fact that Canada has some of the most draconian gun laws in the western world. Two countries that have gun laws tougher than Canadas, Britain and Australia have a lot more violent crime than countries with more rational gun laws. In the United States, the two cities that have totally outlawed gun ownership within their city limits are Chicago and Washington D.C., both of which are among the most violent of Americas cities.
It leaves one to wonder if Miller gives any thought to the things that come out of his mouth, or if his mouth works independent of his intellect. Lets examine Millers latest "modest" proposal to see how viable it might be. To begin, land would have to be procured and a secure facility would have to be built. Then, qualified staff would have to be hired to be on site 24/7. That staff would have to receive extensive training in both security and the handling of firearms. Who would administer this central depository? The city? The province of Ontario? The feds? And then there is always the question of how much it would cost and who will pay.
Rather than beating the sheep, farmer Miller might be better off if steps were taken to nab and punish the fox. Im sure he is aware that we already have a secure storage facility, albeit it isnt for guns, its for criminals. Its called prison and it takes a great deal of political will to enforce the plethora of existing laws covering the use of guns.
Canadas gun registry, which has cost taxpayers and estimated $2 billion over the last several years, has done absolutely nothing to reduce violent crimes in this country. I think that $2 billion might have been a better investment had the money been used to build new correctional facilities. If a prison that houses 1,000 criminals costs $50 million to build, then we would have enough prison space to house and additional 20,000 convicted felons.
My guess is that Millers moronic musings arent really indicative of Miller being a moron, but that his constituents are morons. I do not for one minute believe that his assertion that the guns in Canada are a U.S. problem or that he seriously believes that a central secure gun depository would solve the gun crime problem in Toronto. After all, Miller is a Harvard graduate. I believe Millers pronouncements are for the consumption of the people that voted him into office. All those nice, Birckenstocks-and-wool-socks-wearing peace activists and those nice single soccer moms who feel threatened by an Alberta farmers ability to own a shotgun to hunt or shoot varmints. After all, who needs to hunt these days and dont varmints have a right to live, too?
Torontos social worker community has suggested that the gun problem is related to "root causes". Of course we all know that the words "root causes" mean that no one is responsible for their actions because of poverty. Except I dont think these kids are killing one another over a sandwich. I think the reasons are a lot less complex than "root causes".
So long as Miller trivializes Torontos gun problems by attempting to lay the blame elsewhere or to suggest glib solutions, the problem will only get worse. But then Miller, who appears to have filled the void left by Jack Laytons foray into federal politics, isnt really as interested in solving the problem as he is in keeping his job as mayor.