Warning: This article contains references to gun violence and may be triggering for some readers.
“We are capping the number of handguns in this country,” said Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. On Monday, he made this statement, and that very same day, his government introduced legislation that would do just that. AP reported that Trudeau also declared, “It will be illegal to buy, sell, transfer or import handguns anywhere in Canada.”
But this bill doesn’t stop there. It’ll allow gun licenses to be revoked from people involved in acts of domestic violence and force individuals, that have been deemed dangerous by the court system, to hand in their firearms. This bill will also permanently ban rifle magazines that can hold more than five rounds of ammunition.
Moreover, this isn’t the only piece of gun legislation that Canada has put forth in recent years. In May 2020, CBC reported that Trudeau’s government would ban 1500 types of military-grade weapons. In February 2021, CBC outlined that Trudeau’s government would buy back illegal firearms, allow municipalities to ban handguns, and increase criminal penalties for gun smugglers.
This most recent round of gun control measures was announced soon after a mass-shooting event took place in Uvalde, Texas. It’s worth noting though Canada experiences less gun violence than America does, thanks to their tighter laws.
“In Canada, gun ownership is a privilege not a right,” explained the minister of emergency preparedness Bill Blair. “This is a principle that differentiates ourselves from many other countries in the world, notably our colleagues and friends to the south.”
“Other than using firearms for sport shooting and hunting, there is no reason anyone in Canada should need guns in their everyday lives,” said Trudeau. He additionally noted, “We cannot let the gun debate became so polarised that nothing gets done. We cannot let that happen in our country. This is about freedom. People should be free to go to the supermarket, their school, or their place of worship without fear.”