April 13th 2008

The Lilith eZine Sunday Edition

Letter from the Editor

Toronto Mayor David Miller has started a petition to ban handguns in Canada, but really that is just a smoke screen. While I support the proposed ban to a limited extent, what we really need is tougher border security on both sides of the US-Canada border.

Hypothetically if I wanted to I could quite easily walk across the border under the pretense of cross-border shopping, purchase a new or used gun in either Michigan or New York state, and walk back with it in my purse and no one (thanks to reverse discrimination against women) would even think to search me or my backpack, purse or shopping bags. I would be just one of thousands of cross-border shoppers who go across the border every day to find cheaper deals. I could then sell the gun on the Canadian side of the border for a tidy profit, paying for all the cheap goods I purchased in the malls south of here and then some.

So much for border security.

We have three options:

#1. Super Tight Border Security - Nothing gets across without being searched, X-rayed and interviewed by border patrol guards on both sides of the border. No more of this cross-border shopping nonsense. Only transport trucks, tourists, people doing business or working on the other side would get across and there would be high fees just to cross the border.

#2. Invest heavily in getting more undercover police officers to catch gun smugglers and illegal arms dealers.

#3. The status quo. Leave things as they are. Continue to allow the flow of drugs/guns and whatever across the border and be prepared to pay the consequences whenever our citizens get killed.

Banning handguns would make it easier to prosecute criminals who take part in violent crimes, but it isn't going to solve the problem of cross border gun smuggling. We can ban handguns if we want to, but it is just one step towards finding a much larger solution.

Suzanne MacNevin

Toronto Mayor David Miller's Petition

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