Canada – -(Ammoland.com)- Too many media agencies are akin to dogs with a bone to protect when they cover firearms events.
They fight hard to keep that bone – aka the gun registry – with little consideration for the facts. They won't let go, and then snap at anyone who tries to take it away. The media over-estimate their own strength, believing they can somehow bring the registry back to life.
Witness the police confiscation of some 180 guns and 40 bayonets from the home of a 72-year-old man after a 20-hour standoff in Montreal. The elderly man allegedly waved a handgun at some utility employees, who called police. When they arrived, Quebec provincial police say they consulted the registry. Even though the police were convinced he was armed, they claim the registry was consulted. The Canadian Press did more than go along for the ride – it created a story about the registry's usefulness.
Canadian Press seems to believe the old saw that if they print something often enough, it will become the truth.
The Canadian Press is a repeat anti-gun offender. It tried to transform this unfortunate event into a triumph for the Quebec portion of the registry. The story lead opened thusly:
“The federal gun registry may be dead in the rest of Canada but it was put to use this week during a high-profile standoff in Montreal.”
CP hopes readers will infer that the registry can be useful to police when dealing with an individual who witnesses have already said is armed.
Public Safety Canada is quoted as suggesting there's no need to worry because gun owners still need to have a valid firearms licence, like that's the panacea to keep Canadians safe. Licences can't keep front line police officers alive because bad guys don't have licences. A paper chase is just that.
The Canadian Press news story took centre stage in the theatre of the absurd when it further opined:
“When the 20th anniversary of the Ecole polytechnique (sic) massacre was marked in 2009, then-Montreal police chief Yvan Delorme called the registry “essential” and said it had helped police seize weapons from a man who made threats in the aftermath of the 2006 shootings at Montreal's Dawson College.”
But, the Dawson shooting occurred after the firearms registry was up and running. Delorme must have sneezed at that media conference. His faulty logic must have been contagious and some reporters caught the bug.
How do we know that The Canadian Press torqued the story of a confused senior citizen into a firearms registry triumph?
Because his story contained this sentence that could only have been written if the reporter asked about the registry's role in the take-down that ended with rubber bullets:
“Montreal police have confirmed they consulted the registry during the standoff to learn about their suspect but wouldn't elaborate on whether it played a role in the outcome.”
It smacks of the old tabloid reporter's trick of asking a suspect when he stopped beating his wife.
Many Canadian news agencies are careful to adhere to the basic tenets of responsible journalism, and the reporters who refuse usually end up standing pink and naked in public. We see you.
The CSSA is the voice of the sport shooter and firearms enthusiast in Canada. Our national membership supports and promotes Canada's firearms heritage, traditional target shooting competition, modern action shooting sports, hunting, and archery. We support and sponsor competitions and youth programs that promote these Canadian heritage activities. Website www.cdnshootingsports.org