In May of 2007, Susan Delacourt sounded the alarm on the Gun advisory panel, hand picked by Stockwell Day and Garry Breitkreuz. All were pro-gun lobbyists, including the man in the above photo.
The Conservative government's firearms advisory committee, appointed and operating in virtual secrecy, is made up almost entirely of pro-gun advocates opposed to the firearms registry. Its dozen members include a man who argued that more guns in the hands of students would have helped in the recent Virginia Tech massacre, in which 32 people were killed, and another shooting aficionado who described a weapon used in last September's Dawson College killings in Montreal as "fun."But the story gained little traction and all but went away. This allowed the Conservatives to continue their pro-gun agenda.
The committee's pro-gun tilt lends to the perception that Prime Minister Stephen Harper's government is out of step with urban concerns on firearms violence – especially in Toronto. Jordan Manners, 15, was killed last week in a school shooting, days after philanthropist Glen Davis was gunned down. Over the Easter weekend, Public Safety Minister Stockwell Day quietly extended a long-gun amnesty program to allow those firearms owners yet more time to register their weapons – pleasing registry opponents but angering those fighting for tougher laws. In background research obtained and confirmed by the Star, members of the Conservatives' committee have shown themselves to be vocal proponents of gun use.
Harper's Reform movement has had long and deep ties with the American NRA and follows their belief that citizens should be armed for their own protection. In 2001, Conservative MP Garry Breitkreuz, posted on the NRA website.
A Canadian Alliance MP has defended his appearance on the U.S.-based National Rifle Association Web site and his assertion that Canada has harboured terrorists while persecuting gun owners. But in an interview Thursday, Saskatchewan MP Garry Breitkreuz said he has no evidence to support his claims that Canada is a terrorist haven and its negligence contributed to attacks in the United States. "We should not be targeting duck hunters and trying to put them in jail. (Alliance MP Defends Remarks, Leader-Post (Regina) / CP, October 5, 2001)Also revealed:
In 2009, former Chief of Staff to Maxime Bernier, Bob Valcov was named as executive director of the Canadian branch of the international gun lobby group, Safari Club International, a group with strong ties to the NRA. Another former Conservative staffer, Brant Scott, who was Executive Assistant to Conservative MP Garry Breitkreuz, became Director of Communications to the Canadian Sports Shooting Association which also has strong links to the NRA. Media reports earlier this year reported that the NRA is helping Canadian groups like the Canadian Shooting Sports Association, Canadian Firearms Institute and the Canadian Unlicensed Firearms Owners Association to fight the registry by raising money and coaching them on how to lobby politicians.Two weeks ago I posted on an alarming story where another member of Harper's gun advisory board, compared our police officers to the Nazi SS. These guys don't fool around.
In 2006, Conservative MP Garry Breitkreuz co-hosted with the Canadian Shooting Sports Association, a forum featuring then-NRA president Sandra Froman, as keynote speaker at the CSSA annual meeting in Toronto.
In 2006, then-Public Safety Minister Stockwell Day appointed the Minister's Firearms Advisory Committee which was composed exclusively of opponents of the gun registry, including many with direct ties to the National Rifle Association, including Professor Gary Mauser [in above photo] whose research had been directly funded by the NRA. Former Canadian Alliance MP Jim Pankiw appeared in an NRA video in 2001 claiming that the gun registry turned law-abiding Canadian citizens into “instant criminals.”
Former Conservative MP Art Hanger appeared in an NRA infomercial in 2000 claiming that the Canadian government “wants every firearm seized in this country.” Ontario Progressive Conservative MPP Jerry Ouellette also appeared in the video claiming that the government was intent on confiscating guns saying, “It's coming. We've got the test waters here in Canada to prove it and you're next on the list.” He claimed his comments had been pre-vetted by then-Premier Mike Harris’ office.
In 1995, then-NRA executive director, Tanya Metaksa, wrote to Prime Minister Jean Chrétien threatening a tourism boycott of Canada if the long gun registry Bill passed: “An overwhelming negative reaction can be anticipated and it could seriously erode revenue into Canada generated by visiting U.S. sportsmen and women.”
Yesterday the Canadian Press picked up the column written in the Gun Digest:
A man who advised the Conservative government on firearms policies has compared the Ontario Provincial Police to a fascist paramilitary group and the Nazi SS. Dr. Mike Ackermann, a physician in Nova Scotia, was appointed in 2006 to a firearms advisory committee, reporting to then-public safety minister Stockwell Day.Yes we should definitely give Harper another mandate. I've got my eye on a nice little .38 special snub nosed revolver, that will fit nicely in my purse.
Ackermann wrote a note in a Canadian Firearms Digest mailing list earlier this month discussing a police raid on the home of a gun owner in central Ontario. In the note, he compares the police to the Black Shirts, a fascist paramilitary group in Italy under Benito Mussolini and the infamous Nazi SS police.
The next time someone butts in line in front of me, I'll pop 'em.
Is this really your vision for Canada? On May 2, ignore the polls, and vote wisely.