If it feels like we in this country have been debating the merits of the long-gun registry for a long time, that's because we have been.
It was back in 2001, when Jean Chretien's Liberals introduced the controversial measure that required all owners of hunting rifles and shotguns to be register them with the government.
Since that time we've heard the rhetoric from both sides of the debate: 'the registry does nothing to stop criminals from getting guns' was a common refrain for anti-gun registry lobbyists while gun registry supporters retorted with comments such as 'the gun registry saves lives.'
Well, while the debate might not be over, the long-gun registry officially is.
On Thursday night, the Tories confirmed that all the records of registered long guns have have now been destroyed.
This event doesn't mean the registry idea is dead completely and forever. Earlier this year, a Quebec Superior Court judge granted a permanent injunction restricting the federal government from destroying the long-gun registry data related to Quebec. There's also been chatter about other provinces starting up their own registries. And — you never know — future government could always try to revive it.
But for now, Canada's long-gun owners are celebrating.
According to the Canadian Press, the Canadian Sports Shooting Association issued a statement telling its members that they are "the envy of international firearms advocates everywhere".
Others took to a Twitter to blatantly boast about their long-fought long-gun victory:
#gunregistry gone maybe now can start targeting criminals instead of law abiding citizens. Lefties going nuts over this here in Canada.
— Mike Seager (@MikeSeager) November 2, 2012
It's over. It's finally over. (Well, except for Quebec).
— Pro Gun Canadian (@ProGunCanada) November 2, 2012
— Casper (@casperthemedic) November 2, 2012
#gunregistry?Na na na na,Na na na na,Hey hey heyGoodbye!And good riddance, too.
— Fearsclave (@fearsclave) November 2, 2012
'Fearsclave', the last Tweeter listed above, also added another Tweet. With a caption that read: "So how are you guys celebrating the demise of the gun registry," he posted a picture of gun registry certificate, stapled to a tree and full of bullet holes.
[ Related: Hunting activity up after gun registry demise ]
For today, at least, Canada's anti-gun registry advocates are basking in their success.
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