Canadian Gun Owners Go Underground

From the National Post:

She is a Toronto grandmother of two in her mid-sixties and she is sharing her love of guns in mid-winter on a underground range in Toronto’s west end. (That range has since closed; Ellen’s club now shoots at another range in the City of Toronto but will not disclose its location.)

Ellen also won’t share her real name. The request for anonymity reflects a reluctance to disclose personal information in a city in which even legal gun ownership comes with a stigma attached.

“You have to be careful who you talk to,” she says. “It’s like religion and politics.”

As long as gun owners remain underground and won’t talk about what they do, the extinction of the culture that allows and tolerates gun ownership is inevitable. Also, to change anything for the better, you have to change the culture. From a Canadian Criminologist:

“I know some people like sport shooting, but it doesn’t seem to me like much of a sport, personally. I think a lot of people would also think of it as quite peculiar as a sport, especially because where are those guns stored and how safely? A lot of people would share the view that you should get yourself a proper sport and go play hockey or something.”

And the reason you need to be “out of the closet” so to speak, is because if you’re not, you can’t attack people like this above for being the sanctimonious pricks that they are. The key to changing the culture is to make the attitude displayed above unacceptable. You won’t see anti-gun folks here saying stuff like this, because we have succeeded in accomplishing that.

13 thoughts on “Canadian Gun Owners Go Underground”

  1. I think Mariana Valverde’s previous line is even more telling: “In the countryside, obviously in rural areas, a lot of people have guns for hunting purposes. But in the city, I think most people would not see any legitimate use for guns.”

    Canadian gun owners have two major hurdles. Not only are they in the closet but their gun ownership has been reduced to just “sporting”.

    Note that the National Post article doesn’t mention self defense once. Or that the canadian self storage laws make self defense at home basically impossible without getting arrested for it.

    And add in that their carry permits are basically never given out and you can see how the Toronto goverment can successfully drive out almost all the ranges and gun shops and ban the construction of any new ones.

    Afterall, the goverment is simply regulating a loud, dangerous hobby involving tools with “no legitimate” use.

  2. Well, we have the advantage of having the facts on our side. The most recent stats I found with a quick Google search were for 2006.

    Injuries per 100 participants

    Ice Hockey 15.9
    Hunting 1.3
    Trap & Skeet 0.4

    Clearly, the Canadian Criminologist is giving bad advice. You’re almost 40 times more likely to be injured playing hockey than shooting trap or skeet.

    It must be easier to keep the muzzle pointed in a safe direction than to keep your stick on the ice.

  3. I’ve taken several adults for their first shooting experience, and when the come to my club I think every one of them have been surprised at what a calm, safe, and relaxing experience target shooting can be.

    I think many people in Anti-Gun states think its all toothless hillbillies spraying away at targets and safety a lax afterthought.

    That’s certainly what the media and the anti-rights lobby want them to think.

  4. Yeh-uh, pway a “real” thport wike hockey, becauthe hockey is tho non-viowent. And thee youwr Dentith weguworawy, cortethy of the free Nathional Heath Pwan…
    I know a goalie who has knocked the teeth out of more than a few guys playing hockey. You’re 40-times more likely to be injured playing hockey because it allows and even encourages violent physical behavior, violence that is rewarded by minute-increments in a “penalty box” instead of lawsuits and jail-time just because it’s a “sport”…

  5. I wonder how many gun owners there are all “NO! Keep your gun hobby concealed!!! If you openly display your passion then you’re just harming the movement because surely, there will one or two amongst the hundreds of thousands of us who will make us look bad“?

      1. Quasi-serious.

        I hear the same argument here. Better to stay in the shadows, no need to rock the boat, yadda yadda yadda. When I bring up that there is an added benefit to OC that it lessens the visceral reaction to guns by desensitization, I’m often shouted down as “only OC’ing to be a dick about it”.

        Just thought it was interested that my argument is being made here for me.

  6. I live in south Florida. At the local ranges, there sure are a lot of “snowbird” Canadians on the firing lines. I have no idea where they keep their firearms (and am not about to ask) but they sure do love their guns and shoot them well.


  7. Its one thing to try and stop bad laws when you have the support of friendly neighbors, vs trying to stop them when no one knows who you are, or just thinks your that nut with the guns.

    Better relations and making thing more mainstream seem to be doing well everywhere else. Look what it did for recycling!

  8. We need to come up with a good way to export gun fun to the rest of the world. Canada and Austrailia have certain avenues open to it, but Formerly Great Britain will even be more difficult; and these are just the Anglophone countries.

    We have blogs and YouTube; we now need to make good use of them!

  9. Back about 2001, I had signed up to work a booth at a gun show, held on the MN State Fair grounds. We were, at that time, pushing hard to get a shall-issue law passed.

    While walking in from the parking lot, I saw a number of other people do the same – several of whom were carrying in guns, whether to sell, exhibit, or just show off, I couldn’t say.

    What struck me, though, was the body language. A lot of people were clearly uncomfortable with taking cased long guns out of their cars, in a public place. One guy almost cringed, as he looked carefully around to see if anyone was noticing.

    It was then I decided that shall-issue was the most important gun rights issue on the table. More important than range preservation, than castle doctrine, or all the rest. Because the antis greatest weapon has been their ability to convince people – even gun owners – that gun ownership is somehow perverse. That it’s rare, and unusual, and of questionable moral character.

    And it’s that the shall-issue attacks. It makes gun ownership ordinary. And now that shall-issue has succeeded, most places, we need to continue and extend that.

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