LNP announce useless gun amnesty
I see the government has announced a gun amnesty to “get illegal weapons off the street” according to Justice Minister Michael Keenan. On ABC TV he indicated “Grandfather’s old gun” needed to be handed in. From today’s Oz;
Mr Keenan said the amnesty was aimed at reducing the number of guns in the “illegal and grey market”. “Some of that will be somebody who might have grandpa’s old gun in the back shed that wasn’t registered that we want handed in,” he said But the Justice Minister did not explain how the government would entice criminals to hand in their illegal firearms.The last sentence is the killer. I can’t see the Middle Eastern organized crime gangs in western Sydney, the Melbourne drug syndicates nor the Bikie gangs having round table discussions as to how best they can get all their illegal weapons collected and handed in. Isn’t going to happen but some ordinary guy will hand in Grandfather’s gun for altruistic reasons, the government will say “look how we are dealing with the problem” and they aren’t. In the case of Farhad Jabhar who shot and killed Curtis Cheng at Parramatta in October, he didn’t have legal access to firearms. Nor did he have a firearms licence or own a firearm. The weapon used, a handgun, wasn’t legally registered.. Alameddine, who gave the gun to Jabhar allegedly sourced the weapon from a Middle Eastern organised crime gang operating in western Sydney. This type of weapon, it appears, may be obtained for a few hundred dollars. The government can’t legislate criminals into law abiding citizens. That takes policing and a good start would be increasing surveillence of imports as indicated by this link which highlights gun smuggling through Australia Post. Again from The Oz;
The bottom line is that Australia’s laws don’t allow easy access to firearms, and lawful access to semiautomatic or automatic weapons is extremely restricted and heavily monitored. But the problem in counter-terrorism isn’t those who operate within Australia’s gun laws: it’s the criminal alliance between the gangs that control the illegal firearms markets and the terrorists they’ll trade with. We need an enhanced understanding of the crossover points to combat both national security challenges.Policing, not legislation.
And adding to that, when all gun owners registered their legal weapons last time, there seemed to be an inordinate rise in thefts from rural properties. From what I hear this anomaly hasn’t been addressed yet.
Any bid to reduce the availability of firearms in the community is a good one, although I agree that the amnesty won’t make much difference. Unfortunately, we are moving inexorably towards the situation that applies across the Pacific where there are almost as many firearms as people.
Making sure the weapons don’t get here in the first place is also a move in the right direction.
Gun violence in the USA has killed 428 times more Americans than terrorism over the past decade. Yet we have lunatics like Leyonhjelm advocating liberalizing our laws.