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What they say about Gun Registries….

Firearm registration systems are commonly introduced more for political reasons than for practical purpose and it seems inevitable that they are doomed to fail. Here are a few observations on the worth of firearm registration systems. We have been unable to find a researched quote in favour.

“It seems just to be an elaborate system of arithmetic with no tangible aim. Probably, and with the best of intentions, it may have been thought, that if it were known what firearms each individual in Victoria (Canada) owned, some form of control may be exercised, and those who were guilty of criminal misuse could be readily identified. This is a fallacy, and has been proven to be the case.” Research Branch of the Canadian Library of Parliament P.5.

“There is no evidence to suggest there is any relationship between the registration of firearms and their control.”
NZ Police Support Services Directorate 1982 P.4.

“After considering the huge costs and inconveniences of gun-registration systems when used as a form of gun control, as well as the total absence of any corresponding evidence of social benefits resulting from the systems – for example, in reducing gun crime, improving crime resolution, or identifying and convicting criminals. On the contrary, we have seen how gun registration – in every single country studied – consistently generates the same consequences. Derek Bernard, The folly of gun registration.

“There is little evidence that a registration system would be instrumental either in solving serious crimes involving firearms or in preventing them.” NZ Police Operations Support Group 1996 P.8.

“I would therefore recommend that Firearms Registration be forthwith abolished, and together with the Firearms Consultative Committee a far reaching, effective and proper system of education be introduced as a pre-requisite to the obtaining of a shooter’s licence.” Report on the Firearms Registration System in Victoria (Australia) by Chief Inspector A. Newgreen (Registrar of Firearms) P.8, para 28.

“While registration will not aid the tracing of stolen or illegal guns as those in possession, e.g. criminals/gangs, will remove the identification. It will create a black market for stolen and unregistered firearms thus placing far greater numbers of untraceable guns into the hands of criminals.” Mr Michael Reeves, Chairman, New Zealand Council of Licensed Firearm Owners. (Incoming, Oct 1998 P.9)

“Three things are necessary for a firearms registration system to be effective.

  •  All guns must be registered
  •  Criminals must use registered guns
  •  Registration must be kept in order and up to date

None of these three criteria appear to be the case in Australia, or elsewhere.” Ted Drane, past National President of the SSAA, 1994

International Recognition for Shooters Union

Shooters Union is an international affiliate of the United States NRA (National Rifle Association). This affiliation fits well with the Union’s main role to defend the rights of law abiding firearm owners within Queensland and the Nation.

So what does that do for us here in Australia?

Well, it gives us affiliation with the largest, most effective and most recognised shooting organisation in the world. It gives us access to information, training events and competition shoot formats, as well as alignment with many other international pro-firearms rights groups which are also affiliated to the NRA.

This is an important step for your Shooters Union’s growth and ability to develop effective strategies to improve firearms legislation in Qld and across Australia in the future.

Congratulations to our Treasurer Jan Linsley who has worked tirelessly to make this affiliation happen.

We realise that sometimes it does not look like much is happening on the SU front, but be assured that the growing management committee are hard at work behind the scenes developing and improving our services as well as developing relationships with firearms friendly politicians across the country.

Let’s all work together to make Qld and Australia a better place for legal firearms owners. As one of the safest and most law abiding groups in the country, you deserve respect from our political representatives and police forces everywhere and we are working to make sure you get it.

What’s more important, Guns or People?

We are continually subjected to inflated newspaper claims that Howard’s ill-considered gun registration has done so much to reduce gun crime that we forget the other aspects to the 1996 gun laws, such as formalised gun safety courses which are a prerequisite to getting a gun licence, the police checks and built in restrictions on violent offenders obtaining a registered firearm.

Dr. Samara McPhedran PhD, in one of her meticulously researched papers considers which part of the gun laws has had the most positive impact, the laws affecting guns, or the laws affecting people.

Click through to Samara’s paper in The ‘Conversation’ https://theconversation.com/regulating-people-not-just-guns-might-explain-australias-decline-in-mass-shootings-44770

Lever Action – the New DEMON Gun

Many of you may have read or viewed disturbing media reports over the past week on how Victorian Police are “concerned” about a new “rapid fire” lever action shotgun about to be released for sale in Australia. As expected these reports have been followed by calls in the media and by various “experts” and officials for a rethink (read new gun grab) on Australian gun laws.

At Shooters Union we have been aware of a disturbing trend appearing over the past year. First a rumour here and a dropped word there from someone in a meeting. We were hesitant to bring it to our members because, to be honest, every single official that was approached denied there were any plans afoot to change legislation regarding certain types of firearms.

OOPS, now it appears these same people are coming out from their dark little corners because they think a modern lever action shotgun can be used to make the public fearful enough to push even more non-effective restrictions on you, the legitimate law-abiding firearm user.

In a nutshell, this is what we have been hearing over the past year or so:

Various state police officials in several states, have been working together with a shadowy group that operates under the Commonwealth Attorney General’s Office (Firearms and Weapons Policy Working Group) on various firearm related issues and one that has been repeatedly raised has been the concept of heavily restricting “Manually Operated Rapid Fire Weapons” MORFW (surely only a government department could even imagine such a title).

MORFW’s include the following:

•  All lever action firearms (rifle/shotgun)

• ALL pump rifles (pump action shotguns already heavily restricted)

• Straight pull bolt action rifles with detachable magazines

The basic proposal is that MORFW’s should be reclassified as Category C firearms, as is currently done for self loading rimfire rifles and shotguns and pump action shotguns. This means that 95% of shooters could not own or use them!

BUT, here is the good news. To accomplish this the Federal government would have to get ALL Australian state governments to agree to change their legislation.

This will be hard to do as most state governments have ZERO interest in changing these laws and going through all the massive political fight that will come with such proposals (I am hoping you are in the fight right alongside us).

So that is exactly why you are now seeing very carefully dropped articles in media across the country about the new “demon shotgun” that can fire so rapidly and is “deadly” (I guess other 12 gauge shotguns are not deadly??). The people pushing for these outrageous changes need a focus, something to try and gain some support and the lever action shotgun has been picked as the new poster child for “bad gun”.

Leaving aside the inherent idiocy of the whole “good” gun “bad” gun concept we live with in Australia, this new move against what amounts to probably 30-40% of all legally owned firearms is mind numbing.

As firearm owners we need to be united in opposing this concept totally, utterly and completely.

Some facts:

• Lever Action Shotguns have been around since the 1880s, and newmodels have been selling well in Australia for a number of years without problems.

• Lever action rifles are the second most popular action type in Australia and have been selling here since the 1870s.

• All firearms are safe in the right hands.

We will be keeping you informed of any developments in this area, and in fact we are taking it so seriously that in the next week we will announce a major event that Shooters Union will be sponsoring to raise awareness of how we can improve our firearm laws while not making them dumber and less effective.

This will be something you can fully participate in and will, in our opinion be the biggest step by firearm owners since 1996 to get a “fair go” for shooters. So keep watching for some big things VERY soon.

In the meantime, write or talk to your local MPs and let them know your feelings on the issue. The only way these laws will get through is if you and your shooting friends say nothing and do nothing.

Link to Queensland MP’s: https://www.parliament.qld.gov.au/documents/Members/mailingLists/MEMLIST.pdf

ACT NOW!

The Folly of Gun Registration – Part 1

The “folly of gun registration” articles are reprinted here with the kind permission of the author, Derek Bernard, firearms researcher, shooter and businessman based on the Island of Jersey. The opening article is actually the sixth in the series and is the most relevant to Australia. This article originally appeared in Gun Trade World Magazine

Derek Bernard wrote what follows after considering the huge costs and inconveniences of gun-registration systems when used as a form of gun control, as well as the total absence of any corresponding evidence of social benefits resulting from the systems – for example, in reducing gun crime, improving crime resolution, or identifying and convicting criminals.

On the contrary, we have seen how gun registration – in every single country studied – consistently generates the same consequences.

TWO EXAMPLES FROM AUSTRALIA

The 1989 murder of Assistant Commissioner Colin Winchester.

At the time of Assistant Commissioner Colin Winchester’s death he was heavily involved in a complex and long-running investigation into the Mafia controlled production and distribution of cannabis.

On the evening of January 10th 1989, as he was parking his car, he was shot twice in the head at very close range with a .22 Ruger 10/22 rifle.

Police attempted to call in every registered .22 Ruger 10/22 rifle – and succeeded with 60,000 of them – for forensic examination. None of them matched the murder bullets.

The process involved:

  • Extracting details of those 10/22 rifles from a manual card system with millions of entries.
  • Contacting the registered owners to try to confirm current ownership and whereabouts.
  • Arranging for collection and delivery to forensic laboratories. Forensically testing the rifles.
  • Returning the rifles to their owners.

Naturally, all those 10/22 rifles that had never entered the registration system, as well as those for which the record cards were missing or did not contain accurate address details were not examined.

The author has never seen a published police estimate of the total cost of this procedure. His crude estimate is that it would likely have cost an average of at least AUD$300 per rifle; if so, the total cost would have been about AUD$18 million.

The 1989 to 1992 ‘Backpacker’ Murders

Once more, a major focus was applied to the type of rifle used, the Ruger 10/22.

Possibly not trusting the registration system, perhaps through the lack of useful results from the similar Winchester investigation, despite the huge investment of resources that had gone into it, this time the police placed multiple advertisements throughout Australia.

Nothing of use came out of these efforts either. The murderer, Ivan Milat, was eventually identified and convicted in 1996 very largely as a result of the evidence following the realisation that a 1993 report by a young British hitchhiker, Paul Onions, of an attack on him in 1990, might provide vital information.

COSTS AND BENEFITS

We have considered the history of gun registration in New Zealand, the state of Victoria in Australia, New York City, the whole of the US and, most recently, Canada. In Canada we have seen how the Liberal federal government poured more than C$2.7 billion into its long-gun registry between 1995 and 2010 without producing any identifiable benefits of any sort, before the new Conservative government was able to get agreement to close it earlier this year.

We are painfully familiar with the tendency in all governments to regard the taxpayer’s pocket as an inexhaustible ‘magic money tree’ with which to feed egos, distribute largesse to their favourite groups and pursue irrational fantasies. But familiarity should not breed sad resignation – we should never abandon demanding evidence of real benefits arising from government expenditure.

Previously we looked in some detail at the 1961 murder of housewife Juliet Rowe by Keith Rose in Devon, England, using a Colt ‘Woodsman’ .22 pistol. It was rather a grim illustration of how the very existence of a huge database of gun-registration numbers, collected for more than 60 years – at considerable cost and inconvenience to honest gun owners – led police to consume additional, huge resources in a fruitless, nationwide search for all registered Cold ‘Woodsman’ .22 pistols in every police force in the British Isles.

That process would have consumed hundreds of hours, and all without producing any useful information of any sort – only a further vast quantity of useless data, which probably helped to cloud those lines of investigation that might have been fertile. Rose had passed through the hands of the police in 1981 but, perhaps because police resources were stretched by considering the data from all over the UK on registered pistols, he received little attention.

He was only caught eight years later through the alertness of the victim’s husband and a fingerprint he had left at the scene of the crime. The media often give the impression that the vast quantity of police resource sometimes allocated to the resolution of high-profile crimes is, in and of itself, deserving of congratulation. I suggest that that perception is unsound. I suggest that it is the successful application of skill and judgement in selecting those lines of inquiry that actually lead to the solution of the crime, that warrant society’s thanks and compliments.

Police resources are expensive and finite. Repeatedly consuming large amounts of such resources on lines of inquiry, such as exploring firearm-registration databases, which has a long history of negligible worthwhile results, qualifies for Einstein’s definition of insanity: “Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.”

But Britain and Canada are far from alone in their record of sustained waste in this area. It is the norm, while the courage shown by New Zealand and Canada in belatedly ending most of the waste is very rare. Indeed for many years and unholy alliance of dictatorships and ‘big government’ countries at the UN who broadly share a belief that only Big Brother should have guns, not private citizens and have been trying to conclude an Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) that would require every country to waste even larger amounts of resource on registration procedures….

“Three things are necessary for a firearms registration system to be effective.

      • All guns must be registered
      • Criminals must use registered guns
      • Registration must be kept in order and up to date

None of these three criteria appear to be the case in Australia, or elsewhere” Ted Drane, past National President of the SSAA, 1994

 

Click here to read The Folly of Gun Registration – Part 2

This article originally appeared in the Gun Trade World Magazine

 

Support your Gun Shops

Like all retailers, our gun shops are now suffering the same erosion of their business by internet buying and the hunt for something cheaper.

To serve our sport, gun shops have to have premises, staff, and they pay taxes, including GST. They also have to maintain registers, pay licensing fees and undergo regular inspections, none of which applies to internet sellers. Their shops hold a continuous supply of sporting needs and all that stock doesn’t come cheap.

A cheap internet buy may give you short term gain but cumulatively may deny you the convenience, service and warranties of your local supplier.

We don’t have many gun shops left and any closure is a tragedy for our sport.

Support the shops that supply your sport. We’d be lost without them.

The Folly of Gun Registration – Part 2

The “folly of gun registration” articles are reprinted here with the kind permission of the author, Derek Bernard, firearms researcher, shooter and businessman based on the Island of Jersey. The opening article is actually the sixth in the series and is the most relevant to Australia.This article originally appeared in Gun Trade World Magazine

Experiences of Gun Registries from Around the World

Click here to read The Folly of Gun Registration – Part 1

VICTORIA

“I would therefore recommend that firearms registration be forthwith abolished… “The above quote is an extract from Alex Newgreen’s report of February 26th, 1987. He was the chief inspector and registrar of firearms for the state of Victoria, in Australia.

In 1984 a new act came into force that required all firearms to be registered. Chief Inspector Newgreen was appointed registrar of firearms and charged with introducing the new system and reporting on it after three years has passed. He did so – and his report of February 26th, 1987 was damning. Clause 25 included: “Experience in New Zealand and South Australia, and now indeed in the state of Victoria, indicates that firearm registration… is costly, ineffective and achieves little.”

Clause 28 was the bombshell: “I would therefore recommend that firearms registration be forthwith abolished…” He went on to state that, in his opinion, firearm education “would be less costly and achieve far more…”

This sort of thing was not at all what the government of Victoria wanted to hear – so it didn’t hear it and the report was suppressed. Fortunately for the rule of reason, rumours of the existence of the report began to circulate and a ‘freedom of information request brought it to light.

Sadly, however, in a perfect example of the well-known government principle of “don’t confuse me with the facts, I’ve made up my mind,” the government of Victoria did not abolish the system and, indeed, retains it to the present day. But cost, waste of resources and inconvenience to the law abiding has never had any significance to the disciples of gun control.

Indeed, in more than 30 years of research in this field, the author cannot recollect ever having read a government report on gun control that contained any attempt to quantify the costs and inconvenience to the citizen.

SOUTH AUSTRALIA

South Australia introduced firearm registration in1980 without, so far as is known, any analysis of the likely costs and benefits. In 1985 the government launched a task force to carry out a major review of government controls to check the justification and cost-effectiveness. At the request of the Chamber of Commerce & Industry the taskforce included a review of the firearms act and, specifically firearms registration.

“Registration of firearms does not… reduce the use of firearms for antisocial or illegal behaviour.” “The registration system is grossly inaccurate.” “The registration system is costly to both the state and traders.” “… inaccuracy… and cost indicate that the objective cannot be achieved. “The task force recommends complete review of the firearms act, clearly identifying objectives and examining the feasibility of achieving these objectives.

To date those recommendations have not been carried out.

THE ISLAND OF JERSEY

In 1920, Jersey, the author’s home jurisdiction, substantially copied the UK firearm act of the same year, including the procedure of registering all rifles and pistols, without either jurisdiction carrying out any meaningful research of any sort into the likely costs and effects of the procedure. We then rolled the clock forward 75 years to 1995 and a Jersey government proposal to expand the system to include shotguns, once more simply intending to copy the UK, whose registration scheme included shotguns in 1988.

With the help of an unusually clear-sighted lawyer and ex-attorney general, Senator Vernon Tomes, the proposals were easily defeated. But, a few years later, after Vernon’s death, and riding on the emotion generated by the appalling multiple infant murders at Dunblane in Scotland in 1996, a new Jersey law was passed in 1999 and the registration system was expanded to include shotguns.

At no stage were those in favour of expanding the system able to identify even a single case between 1920 and 1999 in which the data collected was useful in solving a crime or catching a criminal. The main argument seemed to be that perhaps one day it might prove useful. No attempt had ever been made to carry out a cost/benefit analysis, despite this being a Jersey government policy requirement. The concept of gun registration spread around the world during the 20th century. So far as is known, no serious prior assessment of the likely costs and benefits in any jurisdiction has ever been published. Fortunately, here and there attempts have been made subsequently to study the procedure for cost-effectiveness

NEW ZEALAND

The New Zealand 1920 Arms Act substantially copied the UK’s firearm act of the same year and introduced gun-owner certification and firearm registration, also without any meaningful research whatsoever into the costs and effects. As with the UK, the government of the day did not trust its own men, who were returning from the battlefields of the First World War, where they had been fighting – and dying in large numbers – for their country. The fear of revolution, perhaps something similar to the Russian Revolution of 1917, rather than fear of crime, was the driving force.

When reviewing the history of New Zealand gun control in1983, the official New Zealand police Project Foresight report of 1983 stated: “The First World War had ended with many returned servicemen bringing pistols and automatic firearms into the country. They were freely available from stores. Revolution had occurred in Russia and there was a fear that large-scale industrial demonstrations or even riots could occur here.”

But the New Zealand government found it difficult to be honest and publicly state that it didn’t trust its own citizens, so “crime control” was given as the reason for the law. By 1928 the administration of the new law was proving very burdensome to the police and it was proposed that the registration of rifles and shotguns be abandoned. There is no published evidence of any cost/benefit analysis having been carried out; it was just too much work. The proposal was lost, but the problem of too much paper work remained and in 1930 a compromise was reached and the registration of shotguns abandoned.

In 1967 the police themselves started a process of questioning the effectiveness of the registration system. Evidence of benefit proved very difficult to find. The end result was the Arms Act 1 983, which abandoned all long-gun registration and introduced lifetime shooter licences. Thus, once a shooter had been issued with a licence, he would be free to buy and sell long-guns from and to other licensed individuals and shops without any further reference to the police unless and until he committed an offence that required his licence to be withdrawn.

This resulted in a dramatic reduction in paper work for both the police and licensed shooters. On November 28th, 1985, the then New Zealand minister of police, Ann Hercus, responded very positively to the author’s inquiries in to the effects of the law. These are some highlights from her letter…

“The administration of the new system… has seen a dramatic reduction in visits and…administration time.”

“. . . there has been no discernible effect on the criminal use of firearms since the-reintroduction of the new system.”

For some, the concept of the police not having records of every gun is worrying and the question of reintroducing the long-arm registry has been re-examined a number of times since 1983–always with the same result: it cannot be justified.

NEW YORK STATE AND NEW YORK CITY

In 1911 New York City introduced the Sullivan Act, named after a particularly corrupt politician. The Act gave the police discretion on issuing or refusing pistol licences. If issued, registration was required. Those discretionary powers have been and still are – regardless of recent decisions of the Supreme Court – consistently used to routinely deny licences to all except retired police officers and wealthy, influential individuals.

In 1967 and 1968 economist Dr Alan Krug carried out an exhaustive review of the effectiveness of the law and its registration procedures (Does Firearms registration work? 1968). In particular he compared the situation in New York City – where the police had the powers of the Sullivan Act and routinely used them – with the situation in the rest of New York State, where the Sullivan Act did not apply.

At the time New York City had about 44 per cent of the population of New York State. The results were salutary in 1966, after 55 years of the Sullivan Act. Crime rates were massively higher in the city than in the rest of the state – 74 per cent of the murders and 90 per cent of the robberies in the whole state took place in the city.

Not a single crime was committed with a lawfully owned pistol, or, to put it another way, every single pistol crime involved an illegal pistol that was not in the system. Not a single crime was solved, or criminal convicted through the registration system. The President’s Commission on Crime reported that: “Any contention that the Sullivan Law has been effective as a crime-control measure rests on speculation. The entire weight of available evidence rests on the opposite premise, ie that the law has not been effective.”

Sadly for both New Yorkers’ safety and wallets, the present mayor, Michael Bloomberg, continues to believe in any gun control measure, including registration, regardless of costs, or whether it generates social benefits in excess of disadvantages. The president’s Commission on Crime reported that: “Any contention that the Sullivan Law has been effective as a crime-control measure rests on speculation. The entire weight of available evidence rests on the opposite premise, ie that the law has not been effective.”

Sadly for both New Yorkers’ safety and wallets, the present mayor, Michael Bloomberg, continues to believe in any gun-control procedure, including registration, regardless of costs, or whether it generates social benefits in excess of disadvantages.

USA AS A WHOLE

The US does not have, and never has had, a nationwide registration system for all civilian firearms. But all gun dealers have to record the details of all buyers, retain the records permanently and make the information available to the police. In addition to the dealer records throughout the US, during the period analysed, 1958 to 1967, four states – Hawaii, Massachusetts, Mississippi and New York – also required the police to register all pistols to their owners. The cost of these procedures is not known, but it will have been very substantial.

Proposals for a nation-wide system that would apply to all individual owners have been made many times. To try to assess the likely benefits and costs of such a large system, Dr Krug carried out an extensive investigation, covering 1958 to 1967, into the benefits generated by the existing registration systems (Firearms Registration – costs vs benefits, 1970). The investigation sought to identify the number of murders, aggravated assaults and robberies that had been solved through firearm registration records over the ten year period 1958 to 1967.

The total of such serious crimes committed during that time was more than three million.

Responses were obtained from 44 state police forces. Forty were unable to identify a single case that had been so solved. A total of eight cases were identified by the remaining four states; thus, on average, the solution of approximately one serious crime out of every 375,000-plus such crimes was aided by the registration system, or rather less than one per year across all 40 states.

CONCLUSION

Solving any serious crime is a valuable social result. The more that can be solved, the better. But, if cost is ignored, then resources are likely to be misallocated and the numbers solved will be fewer, possibly a great deal fewer, than if the resources had been applied with optimum efficiency. The consistently poor results found by every known investigation into the efficacy of firearm registration systems indicate strongly that firearm registration is not an efficient or sensible way of allocating resources.

This article originally appeared in Gun Trade World Magazine

NIOA Highlights Ridiculous WA Gun Control Legislation

This is Gun Control Legislation gone mad.
How would you feel when approved gun control legislation for firearm owners in Western Australia, can be declared null and void simply by the whim and opinion of one person? Welcome to WAPOL.

NIOA TV has released a special episode highlighting the ridiculous gun control legislation that allows the Police Commissioner or any authorized representative to deny approval for category B firearms based purely on their appearance.

Queensland boasts similar Gun Control Legislation

Interestingly, similar gun control provisions are in place in Qld as published on the QLD Police website:

a) a self-loading centre fire rifle designed or adapted for military purposes or a firearm that substantially duplicates a rifle of that type in design, function or appearance

Instructions for individuals to lobby the WA Govt are included at the end of the video. To watch the video, click on the link below.

https://www.nioa.com.au/nioa-tv/nioa-tv-season-3.html

McKenzie: Gun Control Reform shouldn’t demonise legal gun owners

Media Release | Senator Bridget McKenzie | Senator for Victoria

The Nationals Senator for Victoria Bridget McKenzie said today the demonisation of licensed and responsible firearms owners by the Greens must stop, following the tabling of the Senate’s Inquiry into the ability of Australian law enforcement authorities to eliminate gun related violence in Australia.

Senator McKenzie said the report, tabled today, found that only four hundredths of one per cent of all registered guns in Australia were stolen and only five per cent of those were used to commit a crime.

“Greens Senator Penny Wright has been waging a relentless scare campaign trying to demonise licensed and responsible firearms owners,” Senator McKenzie said.

“Many of the claims made by Senator Wright, including her statement that ‘most illegal guns are not trafficked into Australia, but stolen from registered owners’ has not substantiated in the findings of this inquiry.

“What we have found is clear evidence provided by witnesses, including law enforcement agencies, that most guns used to commit a crime do not originate from licensed firearms owners but are in fact illegally imported.”

Senator McKenzie said the Firearm Safety and Training Council and NSW Police submitted evidence which showed that illegal importation of firearms was a more significant source of illicit firearms than theft, with Victoria Police raising internet facilitated firearm trafficking as an emerging trend.

“Adding more layers of red tape to licensed and responsible firearms owners will not get illicit guns off our streets when the problem is at our borders,” Senator McKenzie said.

“During this inquiry, no case was made for any increased regulation around gun ownership laws; no evidence was shown to us that banning semi-automatic handguns would reduce the number of illegally held firearms in Australia; and no evidence was found that supported stricter storage requirements having any impact on gun-related violence.

“This inquiry was an attempted stitch-up of Australia’s highly regulated, responsible and licensed firearms owners by the Greens – a stitch up that has fallen flat on its face.”
Senator McKenzie acknowledged illicit firearms on Australia’s streets was a concern and said that a continued focus on stamping out illegally imported firearms must be a top priority for Government to reduce the level of gun related violence in the community.

“However our efforts to get illicit firearms off our streets mustn’t come at the expense of licenced and responsible firearms owners, who provide significant social, economic and environmental benefits to our country,” Senator McKenzie said.

“Responsible recreational shooting has produced many Olympic, Commonwealth and World Champions for Australia and hunting is a culturally important activity and legitimate industry that creates jobs and injects billions of dollars into the national economy.

“Equally, farmers use firearms as a ‘tool’ of their trade for the control of pests who wreak havoc on the environment and the humane treatment of stock.”

 

 

Australia Needs Harsher Penalties for Gun Theft

We have had enough: Australia NEEDS Harsher Penalties for Gun Theft

The anti-gun lobbies are continually claiming that most gun crime is committed using guns stolen from legal firearm owners and they are using these exaggerated claims to support their case for tighter gun controls and bans.

Shooters Union of Queensland has decided to put this issue back in the laps of our lawmakers and accusers by challenging them to impose harsher penalties for gun theft.

Shooters Union President Graham Park led the charge on April 8 with articles in 14 newspapers across the country, news items on channels 9 and 10, live interviews and grabs on radio and TV. In doing so he has made it clear that legal firearm owners have had enough of being the whipping boys for gun crime.

To add weight to the ‘fight back’ it is now up to you and other shooters to send this information to your local MPs and media.

A list of the media responses to date is at the end of this message. Look for your paper, radio station and send the item and expressions of your concern on to the decision makers in your area.
As an example, here’s the link to Graham’s interview with ABC Longreach:https://soundcloud.com/abc-western-queensland/shooters-union-calls-for-harsher-gun-theft-penalties

Below is the item in the Courier mail. It applies throughout Australia.

Gun owners demand action on weapon thefts

QUEENSLAND gun owners say the government must bring in tougher penalties for criminals who steal weapons.
THE Shooters Union of Queensland says it’s absurd that anyone who breaks into a house and steals a gun faces the same penalty as someone who swipes electrical goods.
“It is ridiculous that the same penalty would be applied for the theft of a television as the theft of a firearm,” union president Graham Park said in a statement on Wednesday.

“We believe the community expects sensible gun legislation, and would be surprised at the gap between the seriousness of this offence and the penalty.”

Mr Park said legitimate gun owners were subjected to very strict regulations on the licensing, ownership and storage of firearms.

But he knew of cases where a firearm owned by a family for generations had been stolen and the culprit had ended up with nothing more than a good behaviour bond.

“We are urging the Queensland government to create a specific offence for stealing a firearm,” he said.

Harsher sentences should apply to anyone convicted of gun theft, he says.

“This move would clamp down on people targeting gun owners and free up police resources to focus on illegal (gun) imports,” Mr Park said.

Here’s the list of media which carried the story………..

  • WIN News Rockhampton – Phone interview this afternoon – will run on tomorrow night’s (Thurs) news
  •  Nova 106.9 – Pre-recorded grabs for afternoon bulletins
  • Sporting Shooter – Are looking to publish something online
  • 4ZZZ Radio– Published a story online: https://www.4zzzfm.org.au/news/headlines/2015/04/08/qld-gun-owners-call-harsh-penalties-gun-thieves
  • Brisbane Times – Are interested will pass around and contact us for more information if needed
  • ABC North Queensland – Live interview on Mornings with Paula Tapiola at 9:35am
  • ABC Longreach – Live interview on Mornings with Ash Moore at 9:05am – will send through audio tomorrow (Thurs)
  • 2FM Sydney – Pre-recorded grabs for news
  • 4BC News – Pre-recorded grabs for news
  • Queensland Country Life – Very interested, passed on to journalist concerned, will be in touch
  • AAP – picked up and passed through the wire, published on:
    o The Courier-Mail – https://www.couriermail.com.au/news/breaking-news/gun-owners-demand-action-on-weapon-thefts/story-fnihsfrf-1227295061764
    o The Cairns Post – https://www.cairnspost.com.au/news/breaking-news/gun-owners-demand-action-on-weapon-thefts/story-fnjbnvyh-1227295061764
    o Geelong Advertiser – https://www.geelongadvertiser.com.au/news/national/gun-owners-demand-action-on-weapon-thefts/story-fnjbnvyf-1227295061764
    o The Mercury – https://www.themercury.com.au/news/breaking-news/gun-owners-demand-action-on-weapon-thefts/story-fnj6ehgr-1227295061764
    o Perth Now – https://www.perthnow.com.au/news/breaking-news/gun-owners-demand-action-on-weapon-thefts/story-fnhrvfuw-1227295061764
    o The Advertiser – https://www.adelaidenow.com.au/news/breaking-news/gun-owners-demand-action-on-weapon-thefts/story-fni6ul2m-1227295061764
    o The Gold Coast Bulletin – https://www.goldcoastbulletin.com.au/news/breaking-news/gun-owners-demand-action-on-weapon-thefts/story-fnjbnvyk-1227295061764
    o news.com.au – https://www.news.com.au/national/breaking-news/gun-owners-demand-action-on-weapon-thefts/story-e6frfku9-1227295061764
    o Townsville Bulletin – https://www.townsvillebulletin.com.au/news/breaking-news/gun-owners-demand-action-on-weapon-thefts/story-fnjbnvyi-1227295061764
    o NT News – https://www.ntnews.com.au/news/national/gun-owners-demand-action-on-weapon-thefts/story-fnjbnvyj-1227295061764
    o Weekly Times Now – https://www.weeklytimesnow.com.au/news/national/gun-owners-demand-action-on-weapon-thefts/story-fnjbnvyg-1227295061764
    o Herald Sun – https://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/breaking-news/gun-owners-demand-action-on-weapon-thefts/story-fni0xqi4-1227295061764
    o The Daily Telegraph – https://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/breaking-news/gun-owners-demand-action-on-weapon-thefts/story-fni0xqi3-1227295061764
    o Daily Mail (International) – https://www.dailymail.co.uk/wires/aap/article-3029435/Gun-owners-demand-action-weapon-thefts.html
    o Nine News – https://www.9news.com.au/national/2015/04/08/07/05/gun-owners-demand-action-on-weapon-thefts
    o Seven News – https://au.news.yahoo.com/qld/a/27007986/gun-owners-demand-action-on-weapon-thefts/