While it has been virtually ignored by the American establishment media, there has evidently been massive resistance to an effort to register long guns in the Canadian province of Quebec, which hardly fits with the gun control narrative on either side of the border.
According to the Montreal Gazette, “Just days after the Jan. 29 deadline to register (long guns in Quebec), about 75 per cent of long guns estimated to be in the province have not been registered.” That was more than a week ago, and it demonstrates that gun owners in Canada are not unlike their contemporaries in the United States. The single difference appears to be that Canadian gun owners do not have a Second Amendment protection in their constitution.
The newspaper reported that some 15 small municipalities in the province have adopted resolutions against the registry. That’s similar to what is happening in Washington State, where a score of county sheriffs are refusing to enforce provisions of anti-rights Initiative 1639, the sweeping gun control measure passed by just under 60 percent of Evergreen State voters in November.
But sheriffs say it is unconstitutional and unenforceable, and they’ve been joined by two county commissions.
Up north, the Gazette quoted Philip Tetrault, mayor of the tiny town of Warden, about 100 kilometers east of Montreal, who reportedly said that the registry is pointless and will likely wind up mirroring the disastrous federal attempt to register guns.
As recalled by Vincent Harinam and Gary Mauser in the National Review in December, the attempt at national registration under C-68 was a boondoggle.
“It took the Canadian government six years to implement the 1995 legislation with fewer than 2 million gun owners signing up for licenses as of 2001,” the two authors explained. “Worse yet, the RCMP later reported error rates of 43 to 90 percent in firearm applications and registry information. One man successfully registered a staple gun. In fact, an Access to Information request revealed that 4,438 stolen firearms were successfully reregistered without alerting authorities. Despite the promises of Allan Rock, then the justice minister, that the firearms program would cost only C$2 million, the cumulative total had ballooned to more than C$2.7 billion by 2012 — the year the registry was discontinued.”
There was another nasty surprise for Canadian authorities, Mauser and Harinam said. In 1995, Canada banned more than half of the legally registered handguns in the country by reclassifying them. But instead of reducing the handgun homicide rate, that number increased, according to data released in November of last year.
According to the Montreal Gazette, there are an estimated 1.6 million long guns in Quebec, but only 386,253 had been registered by the deadline. This was after a year during which gun owners had the opportunity to register for free online or by mail. Failure to do so could cost someone up to $5,000.
The newspaper said the provincial registry “is expected to cost about $20 million to establish and $5 million annually to maintain.”
Long story short, gun control in Canada is having about the same degree of success as it has in the U.S., which means that millions of dollars will be spent essentially to regulate law-abiding citizens who have not committed any crimes, while the criminal element continues its activities relatively unabated by the gun laws that are routinely ignored.