Cathay Wagantall MP for Yorkton-Mellville recently held a Townhall Meeting on Zoom with Blaine Calkins, MP and Bob Zimmer, MP, they took on a hot topic across the country regarding firearms control.
MP Wagantall informed that “My Conservative colleagues Blaine Calkins and Bob Zimmer joined me for a Zoom town hall meeting on recent Liberal firearms legislation (Bill C-21 and C-22). These two men have such a wealth of knowledge on these bills, and I'm thankful for their time. Thanks to all who attended, as well as for your questions.”
You can catch the whole conversation on YouTube at https://youtu.be/DbiDwbOTCwE
MP Wagantall started off by introducing her colleagues, beginning with Blaine Calkins MP in the constituency of Red Deer-Lacombe and one of the Conservative Party of Canada’s longest-serving MPs.
Prior to the 2015 federal election, MP Calkins was the Member of Parliament for the constituency of Wetaskiwin. Today as a parliamentarian, Blaine has served as the Deputy Shadow Minister for Parks and the Environment, Chair of the Alberta Conservative Caucus, Chair of the Legislative Committee on Bill C-18 ending the Canadian Wheat Board monopoly, the Chair of the Subcommittee of financial Bill C-38, Jobs Growth and Prosperity Act and the Chair of the Access to Information Privacy and Ethics Committee. Calkins has served on the Environment Fisheries and Oceans and Veterans Affairs Committees.
Next. MP Wagantall introduced Bob Zimmer, MP who was first elected as a member of parliament for Prince George Peace River in 2011 and then re-elected as the Member of Parliament for Prince George Peace River Northern Rockies in 2015.
He has been serving as a member of parliament for 11 years having served on the standing committees Agriculture and Agrifoods, Natural Resources, Veterans Affairs and Procedure and House Affairs. Vice-Chair for the standing committee on Human Resources, Skills and Social Development and the Status of Persons with Disability and Critic for Asia-Pacific Gateway. He is Chair of the Committee for Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics.
A day at the range is an event that normally we would have on Parliament Hill where parliamentarians go out and have an opportunity to experience different firearms and the ability to shoot a number of different firearms. This allows them the opportunity to enjoy the outdoors and also the impact that the activity has on our economy.
MP Blain Calkins began with his introduction for the evening, voicing his concern for Liberal firearms legislation (Bill C-21 and C-22).
Bill C-21 is an Act to amend certain Acts and to make certain consequential amendments (firearms).
Bill C-21 states, “Proposed changes to combat intimate partner and gender-based violence and self-harm involving firearms, fight gun smuggling and trafficking, help municipalities create safer communities, give young people the opportunities and resources they need to resist lives of crime, protect Canadians from gun violence, and subject owners of firearms prohibited on May 1, 2020, to non-permissive storage requirements, should they choose not to participate in the buyback program. These changes are outlined in Bill C-21: An Act to amend certain Acts and to make certain consequential amendments (firearms).”
Bill C-22 discusses Mandatory Minimum Penalties to be repealed and proposed changes to mandatory minimum penalties (MMP).
- MMPs would be repealed for 14 offences in the Criminal Code.
- All six Controlled Drugs and Substances Act MMPs would be repealed.
“It is sad that the federal government has used a horrific event to brand and label law-abiding gun owners as the problem, you and I know that is simply not true,” commented MP Calkins while discussing the implementation of Bill C-21.
“The very next bill the government brings forward is Bill C-22, reducing the number of minimum sentences for those who commit gun crimes”, MP Calkin continued.
“Erin O’Toole plans on repealing both Bill C-21 and C-22 when the conservatives are returned to power”, claims MP Calkins.
Bob Zimmer, MP was next to speak to the town hall meeting voicing his agreement with MP Calkin’s comments. “We need to continue fighting back on the Liberal gun policies so we don’t lose all our rights as gun owners”, commented MP Zimmer.
MP Zimmer read through the list of repeals including using a firearm or imitation firearm in the commission of an offence, possession of firearm or weapon knowing its possession is unauthorized, possession of a prohibited or restricted firearm with ammunition, weapons trafficking, possession for purpose of weapons trafficking, robbery with a firearm, extortion with a firearm, selling, etc., of tobacco products and raw leaf tobacco (just to name a few).
There was a major discussion over the handgun ban in municipalities and how this will impact not only the big municipalities like Toronto and Vancouver but also the smaller ones like Yorkton and the surrounding area.
Airsoft toy guns are on the ban list as the replicas are said to look dangerous. Airsoft guns shoot plastic BBs.
“It’s all about stigmatizing lawful gun owners as bad people”, stated MP Zimmer. He continued, “A firearm is just a firearm and isn't a dangerous tool until you put someone dangerous behind them.”
(The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the attendees of the meeting and are not necessarily the views of the reporter or the paper they work for.)
Gary Horseman, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Four-Town Journal