Canada Firearms Act, And Other Backdoored Legislation

Most people think that substantial changes to existing legislation happen with the introduction of new Bills. While this is true, it’s not the full picture. Regulations within that area can be unilaterally changed by an Order In Council.

One such Act is the Canadian Firearms Act. Section 117 allows major changes to be made by the Governor in Council, which bypasses Parliamentary debate. In recent years, several Orders have turned gun rights on their head.

It might be fair to say that legislation covers broad outlines of what is going to happen, while regulations are the specifics of the policies.

As an example, Part “L” gives the Governor in Council power to make unilateral changes:

[For certain classes of people]
(l) regulating the storage, handling, transportation, shipping, acquisition, possession, transfer, exportation, importation, use and disposal or disposition of firearms, prohibited weapons, restricted weapons, prohibited devices, prohibited ammunition and explosive substances

(m) regulating the keeping, transmission and destruction of records in relation to firearms, prohibited weapons, restricted weapons, prohibited devices and prohibited ammunition;

Other sections related to ranges, clubs, gun shows, sales and transfers of restricted and prohibited weapons, among many different things.

There’s really no need to ban firearms if the laws can be rewritten in such a way that makes gun ownership impractical, if not impossible. If they cannot be imported, they cannot be purchased. If they are suddenly “prohibited” to own, they can never be transferred, sold, or passed down.

There’s nothing wrong with minor changes, or appointing bureaucrats by an Order. That’s quite fine. However, this isn’t what this piece is about.

O.I.C. 2020-0298 (May 1, 2020) suddenly turned some 1,500 models of firearms into prohibited weapons, meaning that they couldn’t be transferred ever again. There seemed to be no logic or consistency in what standards were applied in making the determinations of what qualified.

O.I.C. 2021-0599 (June 17, 2021) put in place new background check information requirements, including fuller disclosure on certain behaviours and police interactions. While the previous form asked for information about the previous 5 years, the new forms covered the applicant’s entire life.

O.I.C. 2022-0447 (April 29, 2022) changed what information had to be kept by gun stores, and was effectively a backdoor gun registry for non-restricted and non-prohibited weapons.

O.I.C. 2022-1144 (October 20, 2022) banned sales and transfers of handguns altogether. Now, it wouldn’t kick in for a few weeks, but if a transfer hadn’t at least been initiated, it would no longer be possible to do so.

For reference, Section 12 of the Export and Import Permits Act also allows the Governor in Council to make changes in regulations that wouldn’t specifically need to be approved by Parliament.

This isn’t to say that all O.I.C. are necessarily bad or intrusive. For example, various amnesties have been issued which would have prevented gun owners from becoming criminals as regulations changed.

But when laws are changed with a signature, on the pretense that certain groups of people can’t be trusted, it’s difficult to see this as anything other than spite or intentional.

Worse, given the inconsistency of how things are applied, this can’t be good faith.

  • Bill C-75 reduced the penalties for terrorism offences
  • Bill C-75 also cut criminal penalties for many child sex offences
  • Bill C-238 was defeated, which would have increased punishment if a gun was obtained in the commission of a crime
  • Bill C-5 would eliminate mandatory prison sentences for many serious gun crimes

All of the above came from the Trudeau Government.

One has to ask: what’s the goal here? Chaos? Anarchy? Disarmament? If there was a uniform hardline approach to crime, punishment, and guns, that would be much more understandable. If there was an overall permissiveness, that might be explained. Instead, we have an approach that puts the screws to law-biding gun owners. It does nothing to prevent crime from happening.

And the backdoored legislation — like the Firearms Act — permits exactly this to happen. There’s no need to ban anything when it can be regulated out of existence.

Anyhow, these are just some thoughts on the issue. We don’t really have rights if significant details can be changed with a signature, and without any referendum or democratic mandate.


One Reply to “Canada Firearms Act, And Other Backdoored Legislation”

  1. These legislators are very happy to remind people they are slaves, not masters. I wonder how this will all turn out.

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