Amer­i­cans and guns

National Post (National Edition) - - ISSUES & IDEAS - Robert S. Sciuk, Welles­ley, Ont. David La­ni­ado, West Van­cou­ver John P. Fo­den, Toronto Ce­cily But­ton, Ren­frew, Ont. Wayne Robertson, Chatham, Ont.

Let­ter-writer Mah­mood Elahi pur­ports to un­der­stand the thought pro­cesses of the Amer­i­can found­ing fa­thers when he in­fers that Sec­ond Amend­ment rights ap­ply only to sin­gle shot “mus­kets.” I would point out that the Bri­tish reg­u­lars were equipped with the Brown Bess mus­ket, a smooth bore muz­zle loader with an ef­fec­tive ac­cu­rate range lim­ited to about 150 me­tres. As a re­sult, the troops were or­ga­nized to pro­vide “vol­ley” fire at the op­po­si­tion, and hope that some of the rounds hit home. The Amer­i­cans, on the other hand, were fre­quently equipped with a ri­fled firearm (Ken­tucky ri­fle) that pro­vided ac­cu­rate fire to sev­eral hun­dred me­tres, and pro­vided a huge stand-off ad­van­tage against the “op­pres­sors.”

The found­ing fa­thers both rec­og­nized and ap­pre­ci­ated the tech­no­log­i­cal su­pe­ri­or­ity of the rebel firearms that gave them the ul­ti­mate ad­van­tage and won the day. I sus­pect that the Sec­ond Amend­ment would be ap­plied to­day to the same firearms used by mil­i­tary forces, and were civil­ians equipped with bet­ter, then those own­er­ship rights would also be pre­served. Every geno­cide in the 20th cen­tury was con­ducted by state agents of an erst­while le­git­i­mate gov­ern­ment, and the Sec­ond Amend­ment was a rea­son­able mit­i­ga­tion against such atroc­i­ties. It re­mains as im­por­tant to­day as it was in 1777. Mr. Rob­son brings fo­cus to the claim that the Texas as­sailant was pro­hib­ited from own­ing guns. He uses this as an ar­gu­ment against the need for fur­ther gun con­trol laws sug­gest­ing, what’s the point if bad peo­ple who are not al­lowed to own guns can get them any­way? That is like sug­gest­ing that we don’t need to li­cence drivers be­cause some peo­ple drive with­out li­cences any­way.

To ob­tain my pos­ses­sion and ac­qui­si­tion li­cence in Canada it took me a year and only af­ter ro­bust back­ground and ref­er­ence checks, and per­haps most im­por­tantly, af­ter a two­day gun-safety han­dling and stor­age course was com­pleted. The U.S. lacks a na­tional firearms pro­gram like we have in Canada. Aside from that, one can by­pass in­ad­e­quate and var­ied state re­quire­ments by sim­ply walk­ing into one of the es­ti­mated 5,000 gun shows held an­nu­ally and walk­ing out armed.

The fact is that you don’t have to go to France to see what im­pact ef­fec­tive gun own­er­ship laws have on death rates: The U.S. has more than nine times the gun homi­cides per capita (us­ing data from 2013/14) than we have in Canada. No won­der most Amer­i­cans want more ro­bust back­ground checks. Who is miss­ing the point? games be­fore 1920; for the rest of his ca­reer as a Yan­kee he won five.

For the Red Sox he hit 49 home runs; af­ter 1920 for the Yan­kees he hit 665.

And this was be­fore coastto-coast travel and racial de­seg­re­ga­tion, which made the game a much eas­ier propo­si­tion.

So Otani’s an un­likely saviour. That would be too easy, for build­ing a base­ball team is a com­pli­cated process. Yet, it makes you won­der if a rise to the top will ever hap­pen in Toronto with a man­age­ment team that’s so un­aware of base­ball his­tory and so delu­sional about the tal­ent in the mar­ket­place. I my­self have to ad­mit that I had no knowl­edge of this bat­tle un­til I vis­ited the in­cred­i­ble dis­play at our war mu­seum. Sweeney’s ar­ti­cle helped me to un­der­stand the im­por­tance and sac­ri­fices en­dured by our sol­diers. How can we re­mem­ber this im­por­tant bat­tle when do many have no knowl­edge of it? Half the coun­try gets Nov. 11 off to re­flect on their an­ces­tors who served or per­ished mak­ing Canada what it is to­day, while the rest of us have to work like noth­ing hap­pened.

It’s a dis­grace the pro­vin­cial and fed­eral gov­ern­ments don’t do any­thing to make the day a na­tional hol­i­day. I’m tired of pay­ing my taxes for some peo­ple to have the day off as a bank hol­i­day, then thumb their noses at the rest of us who do not. No won­der re­sent­ment ex­ists in this, of all places, Canada.

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