Blaming the weapon
I just finished reading your normally entertaining mag. The articles about banning guns (NOW, September 18-24) are insane. They read like a Stalinist edict for the abolition of private property.
How about you focus on the hands and hearts pulling the triggers? I am a Torontonian, young and law-abiding. I am also a responsible owner/ shooter of firearms.
You can ban all you want - it will not change murder rates. Criminals are going to kill people regardless.
My father was murdered. I don't blame the weapon. I blame the sick person who murdered him.
More people die on our nation's highways than by shootings. Let's go after the gangs, pimps, predatory lenders and drug dealers.
Gunning for innocents
Regarding your call for a handgun ban. Does it include cops' guns? I suppose all those service pistols carried by Toronto police are there so they can kill people with them? If so, I am (thankfully) still waiting for the slaughter.
Are all their guns designed specifically for killing people? In that case, they must all be defective, because you won't find a less likely place for a killing than a gun range!
Oh, I get it. You still think lawful citizens will turn into raving lunatics in the mere presence of the talisman-like aura of a gun. Why aren't the cops so affected?
A ban on handguns lawfully owned by trustworthy citizens would indeed make a very powerful statement: that Canada cares not a whit for due process or basic human rights. We are willing to imperil the lives of innocents rather than allow them to act in their own defence.
M.J. Ackermann, MD
Guns: it's a black thing
What is missing from your articles calling for a handgun ban is the same thing that the mayor, the chief and most of the news folks never mention - that the shooters are all young black men.
They do hit the odd guy stacking fruit or the odd girl shopping on Yonge, but remove the black shooters from the numbers and how many shootings are there? Zero.
Do you know anyone who buys recreational drugs? How do they feel about the gangs with guns they are supporting financially?
You might recall there was a pastor from Boston here a couple of years ago. He didn't tiptoe around the facts.
Sort of reminds me of J. Edgar Hoover's denial that there was a Mafia.
The Mafia had pictures of him and his male partner being intimate. So he had to lie. What have the gangs got on our officials?
Trigger happy? Nuts!
Those calling for a handgun ban think our hard-fought rights are more dangerous than a couple of thugs in the 'hood with Glocks killing each other.
I hate to burst your utopian bubble, but we live beside the largest weapons manufacturer in the world. Those guns will continue to pour over our borders, and bodies will continue to pile up until we grow the balls to deal with the root causes of gun violence.
But you don't want to listen to that, do you? Smug, latte-quaffing fags like you disgrace our forefathers who died for these rights. Only pea-brained fools can blame an inanimate object for the ills of society.
On this issue alone, I'm voting Conservative this time around. Have a nice day, idiots.
Hate-on on the Net
It's not often that I find myself in agreement with a NOW editorial position. However, your Upfront comment Racists Wild Online (NOW September 18-24) is a true milestone.
Bucking the publishing trend, NOW will surely strike a raw nerve by suggesting that racists, bigots and their fellow travellers cannot be permitted to run wild on the Internet.
The Canadian Jewish Congress has always held that in Canada, as in virtually every democracy on earth, law is necessary from time to time in battling hatemongers in order to provide a protective fence around vulnerable minorities.
It is indeed refreshing to see NOW take a stand in support of common decency and against vile hatred.
Bernie M. Farber
Chief Executive Officer
Canadian Jewish Congress
I know Jack, and Jack...
I am flabbergasted by Michael Hollett's specious comparison of Obama and Jack Layton (NOW, September 18-24). Layton's NDP should adopt "the politics of hope"? Gee, would that include 10,000 additional troops in Afghanistan, unconditional support for Israeli foreign policy and eschewing public campaign financing? Those are all crystal-clear planks of Obama's presidential campaign.
I suggest that Hollett should move beyond political analysis worthy of Scarlett Johansson. Obama is a classic Chicago-style Democrat, nothing more. His principal achievements to date in public life are two books about his glorious self.
Hollett might take note that Obama is currently at serious risk of losing the most winnable election in more than a generation. If the NDP is to gain traction in our election, it'll do it in its own way in a political culture that is quite dissimilar from that of the U.S.
Train to nowhere
I want to thank NOW for detailing the struggles we're facing in York South-Weston, largely as a result of neglectful political representation, especially over the past decade (NOW, September 18-24). A new spirit of community activism is emerging. The fight to stop Blue22 has galvanized local residents who are fed up with being taken for granted by their political masters.
Positive change is afoot, and it can't come soon enough. I do want to correct an important fact: SNC-Lavalin stands to receive $200-$300 million in public subsidies to operate its private, polluting diesel trains from downtown to the airport.
Air Show over Goose Bay
Regarding Air show porn (NOW, September 11-17). In the past, we, too, protested the CNE Air Show so people would better understand the plight of Innu hunting camps in Labrador overflown by NATO jets practising for nuclear and/or conventional war.
Fortunately, these low-level military flights from Canadian Forces Base Goose Bay came to an end in 2006. The Innu of Labrador have many challenges to deal with (obtaining a land rights agreement, boreal forest management, the Voisey's Bay nickel mine, education and cultural expression for youth, and social problems like alcoholism and gas sniffing). They are no longer burdened with also having to confront the militarization of their land due to military test flights.
International Campaign for the Innu and the Earth (ICIE)
Thanks for pointing out the polluting effects of meat production in Meat Of The Matter (NOW, September 4-10). Too bad about your sleazy dig at Indigo for supporting Israel in the same issue. Why not nail them for putting small bookstores out of business?