Canada – -(Ammoland.com)- While Fort McMurray is evacuated and over 80,000 people flee with whatever meager possessions they can, some gun owners have asked the obvious question.
Once the immediate danger is over, will the RCMP once again enter the homes of law-abiding firearm owners?
It’s a valid question given the rumours have already started that the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) are seizing firearms. The RCMP themselves admitted on May 5 2016 that special tactical teams are searching homes for anyone refusing to leave the fire-ravaged city.
“Right now we have special tactical operations inside the city looking to make sure that there is nobody left behind,” Sgt. Jack Poitras said Thursday. He went on to say that the tactical teams will be searching homes and yards for anyone still in Fort McMurray.
This door-to-door search was confirmed by Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale on May 8, 2016.
“The RCMP have been conducting a door-to-door inventory in Fort McMurray quite literally going to every doorstep to simply check on the state of the property and so forth and they expect to have that inventory completed by probably the end of the day today.”
Minister Goodale was then asked this question:
“Minister, the RCMP, during the floods in Calgary and High River the RCMP… there was some controversy over doing that inventory, the gun grab, that kind of thing. Are there any safeguards in place to, you know, allay the concerns of any residents of Fort McMurray who might be worried about the same thing [happening here]?”
Goodale: “I wouldn’t expect a repeat of that problem.”
Goodale: “Because the RCMP will be following the law very closely and they will be making sure that, uh, that all of people, that everyone’s individual rights will be properly respected.”
Five years ago during the Slave Lake fire disaster, the RCMP appeared to be far more interested in seizing firearms than respecting the rights of citizens.
In High River just over 2 years ago, the RCMP seized more than 500 firearms and forcibly entered some 2,000 doors in their quest for your guns, trampling all over your rights in the process.
During the Slave Lake disaster, the RCMP was quite clear.
“The officers have come across several firearms and have seized that property,” said Tim Taniguchi of the Slave Lake RCMP. “Until those sort of items are cleared, it’s not safe for residents to return.”
Until all the guns are seized, it’s “not safe for residents to return?”
How, pray tell, was it safe for them to live there in the first place with all these nasty guns in town?
Then Tim Taniguchi put forward the fantasy that ammunition cooking off is dangerous, claiming it as fact. It is not. So sayeth he who wrote the book on this subject, U.S. Major General Julian S. Hatcher, in his encyclopedia of firearm knowledge titled, “Hatcher’s Notebook.”
Quoting from Hatcher’s Notebook, page 531, under the heading, Small Arms Ammunition as a Fire or Explosion Hazard, he writes: “As for any possible explosion hazard from small arms ammunition, even in large quantities, it can be said with confidence that there is no such danger.”
Hatcher goes on to say on page 532, referencing the Sporting Arms and Ammunition Manufacturers Institute’s (SAAMI) research into this specific area of ammunition in fires:
“Moreover, in other tests by the same organization, a large number of metallic cartridges and shotgun shells were burned in a fire of oil-soaked wood. The cartridges and shells exploded from time to time, but there was no general explosion or propulsion of shot or bullets with any great force or to any great distance. Throughout the test, the men conducting it remained within 20 feet without injury. This test showed that small arms cartridges, whether they are metallic cartridges or shotgun shells, when involved in a fire, will not explode simultaneously but rather piece by piece; that the bullets or shot are not projected with any great velocity; and that the material of which the cartridges or shells are made will usually not fly more than a few feet.”
Should Fort McMurray remain standing when the fire disaster is finally under control, will the RCMP break into homes and seize private property under the auspices of Section 19.1(h) of the Alberta Emergency Management Act, which says:
(h) authorize the entry into any building or on any land, without warrant, by any person in the course of implementing an emergency plan or program; (Editor’s note: This completely ignores that under Canadian law, there is a difference between a building and a domicile.)
In the wake of the High River Gun Grab, the Alberta Property Rights Advocate recommended: “that the Legislature amend the Emergency Management Act to clarify and affirm the consistent respect for and deference to private property rights, even in the face of an emergency situation. Specifically, it is recommended that section 19 of the Act be amended to confirm that a natural disaster does not create licence to disregard the property rights of individual Albertans, nor does it absolve the authorities from a responsibility to follow the due process of law (including the need to obtain Ministerial authorization) if any encroachments do become necessary as an emergency response.”
The Alberta Government had the chance to rectify this mess but refused to do so, placing the rights of all Albertans under the thumb of any government agency declaring an emergency.
Public Safety Minister Goodale is confident the RCMP will NOT repeat their disastrous behaviour in Fort McMurray and it appears that so far, the RCMP have been behaving in the manner that has won them enormous respect around the globe.
Let’s hope they continue to do so. The eyes of many Canadians are watching them, and the countless deeds of bravery and honour the RCMP can claim since 1873 should rightfully be their legacy.
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.
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