Firearms owners in Canada are very frustrated with the federal government right now - and rightly so.
The Trudeau government has been consistently adversarial towards responsible and legal firearms owners throughout their entire tenure. Historically, the Liberals have a long history of stripping away firearms rights in this country. The Trudeau Liberals have only pushed that “legacy” even farther forward, first with Bill C-71, nicknamed the “backdoor gun registry,” and then most recently with their undemocratic Order in Council this past spring, banned nearly 9,500 different types of firearms.
The OIC, which was underhandedly issued during the height of the Covid-19 pandemic with no Parliament is session to check its power, made as many as 400,000 guns illegal with one stroke of the pen.
While the Conservatives raised their voices against the ban, including sponsoring a petition against the ban, which received 230,000 signatures, all the other parties offered mild critiques but effectively supported the measure.
This, sadly, is the state of Canadian firearms rights. Only one major party is willing to go to bat for law-abiding and responsible firearms owners while the rest either advocate for more restrictions or are content to sit on the sidelines as long as they can get what they want from the government.
While the Bloc and the Greens, as well as the Conservatives, did not end up voting for the government’s Throne Speech this fall, the NDP were happy to prop up the Liberals. This should come as no surprise since the Liberals, once a centrist party, have, under Trudeau, moved steadily leftward and have essentially adopted many of the NDP positions. All there is really left to argue about is the scale and timeline of proposals like universal basic income, universal pharmacare, and further firearms bans.
While O’Toole and the Conservatives have promised to overturn the OIC if elected, we won’t be seeing another election any time soon as long as the NDP continue to coax the Liberals to further cave to their policy proposals in exchange for Parliamentary support.
There is still hope for firearms owners; however, both the ongoing legal challenges and the government's own incompetence at carrying out their gun ban might limit or effectively neutralize the impact of the ban.
Just recently, the government was embarrassingly forced to cancel their tender process for the to administer buy back because no private companies wanted to take it on.
As anyone with an ounce of common sense can see, such a buy back will be extremely costly, complicated (how is the value of the firearms decided?), and ineffective at removing the firearms from the owners since many Canadians will resent the fact that they are being forced to hand their possessions over to the government and will likely take measures to ensure the government is not able to do so.
Given the government has not been able to develop a buyback plan or find a company to administer it at this point, the chances of them actually having a program in place before the two year amnesty window closes grow slimmer by the day. The Liberals could find themselves in a situation where they are not able to follow through on their ban and are essentially left with a toothless decree which could easily be reversed by a future government.
At this point, given that the country is ruled by the anti-firearms Liberal-NDP coalition, that is the best firearms owners can hope for.