Posts Tagged ‘violence’

Big Divide In A Big City

Thankfully I was well clear of the hijacking of the peaceful march. Peaceful protestors have stayed clear of the vandals and their cyclone of disruption. There are varying accounts of the numbers of saboteurs (up 100 or 200???). Sad that 200 or so have blighted a massive 10,000+ peaceful march through the city.

Mayor Miller rightly branded these saboteurs as “criminals”. The news crews have all the catchy images of conflict they could have hoped for. A great negative feedback loop. We are up to about 6 Police cars torched by now. The security forces have managed to keep at least a one block perimeter safe and locked down. GO Train service is now non-existent and there are still small pockets of vandals between two different sets of solid Police lines. The ironic thing is that this small group of yahoos are relatively isolated.

Safe in the cage Mr. Harper is all smiles and entertaining his dinner guests. Such a contrast. Word is that the TFC game is still on.

Yonge and Dundas Square was another Black Bloc hotspot and Police are encouraging any stragglers to disperse from Queen’s Park (it’s unconfirmed whether they are now using force). I’m a block or so away from the Square and Queen’s Park and it’s business as usual. Many shops and grocery stores are still open. There are fewer cars and no streetcars but life goes on in the neighbourhood.

Public apathy? Perhaps. It’s more likely the fact that it a few bad apples are getting all the attention while most of us get on with life. Hoping that dialogue and issues take the spotlight tomorrow.

Gun Raffle Invitation Withdrawn, But Not The Prize…

Good thing that Canadian Sport Shooting Association decided to withdraw their invitation to their Annual General Meeting And Dinner this April. I mean a gun special interest group that is inviting an Conservative MP could look a bit strange.

MP Garry Breitkreuz was invited to attend since he is, “a voice of reason in the House of Commons regarding firearms legislation”, according to Tony Bernardo, Executive Director of the Canadian Institute for Legislative Action had head of the CSSA. MP Breitkreuz’s private members bill and efforts to abolish the “long” gun registry strike a chord for the CSSA faithful.

The Canadian Sport Shooting Association (CSSA) Annual General Meeting and Dinner is to be held at the Best Western Toronto Airport West, 5825 Dixie Road, Mississauga April 18th. The most contentious issue is not the all you can eat buffet dinner of roast beef, chicken and salmon. Nor is it that Conservative MP Garry Breitkreuz was invited only to have this offer rescinded. The negative media attention thus far is granted as the CSSA appears to be insensitive to the community.

While there are aproximately 2 million law abiding gun owners in Canada that doesn’t provide any excuse to wave a gun in Toronto’s face. The CSSA will be auctioning off a handgun at their AGM. Not just any gun, a Berreta Px4 Storm. This gun is just like the ones used by Canadian Border officials and law enforcement. The CSSA describes the gun as follows:

“the PX4 “Canadian Edition.” This is a very special “Limited Edition” of the
PX4 Storm and only 500 units were made, specifically for Canadian shooters.
Featuring a factory Beretta 106mm barrel and a 10 round magazine, this
previously “prohibited” pistol qualifies for “restricted” status”

Berreta handguns have been only available in Canada legally since 2005. There were little more than a handful of registered up until the Dawson College shooting. After this shooting registration of Berreta’s almost tripled. Were these buyers all criminals? Not necessarily but perhaps the “hype” was due to the fear that these guns could soon become more difficult to obtain or become banned.

The outrage expressed by the mayor’s office, citizens, families and victims of gun violence is warranted. The reality is that 30-40% of legal guns are getting into the hands criminals. The gun registry is not contributing to criminal activity nor can it be our only measure to reduce gun violence. Yes, it is true that the gun registry has cost over $2 billion dollars but this is largely due to some 2 million Canadian gun owners and gun manufacturers/lobbyists crying over registering their legal weapons. The Conservative government has had some talk of making restricted weapons harder to obtain but not too loudly. Their “tough on crime” stance is softer than they would care to admit.

The majority of people in Toronto back Mayor Miller’s push to make semi-automatic weapons illegal. If you are a good law abiding citizen, civic duty and respect to the community in which you live is not burden, it is a priviledge.

Shooting Has TTC Closing Part Of It’s Subway System

The TTC closed the a section of the Yonge-University-Spadina Subway from St. George Station to Union Station after a shooting at Osgoode Station (University Avenue & Queen Street West). The Police are now investigating the incident and the TTC are operating buses to divert commuters. Keep an eye on the TTC to keep on top of any further TTC Service Advisories.

Hoping that for a quick recovery for the victims and resolution/arrest of the perpetrators.

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