No Right to Bear Arms in Canada? You might want to re-check your history.

If there is one topic of conversation your average Joe Canuck takes pleasure in discussing over a cup of Tim Horton’s coffee (besides hockey) it’s the fact that we’re not American.

Despite months of unending snow and cold and short summers plagued by hazy, mosquito–filled skies, we in the Great White North have it pretty darn good: a health care system that’s the envy of the world, a generous social safety net, education that’s second to none and, in contrast to our wild, unhinged cousins to the south, a peaceful, orderly, progressive utopia where one needs guns to protect the lives of themselves or their loved ones.

And one way we frostbitten, beer–swillin’, hockey–mad hosers vehemently wear our always not–so–subtle anti–Americanism on our sleeve is by distancing ourselves from the gun culture that has become so pervasive in the Land of the Free and Home of the Brave.

Readers with anti-gun tendencies eager to dismiss this commentary as senseless, extreme–right drivel really should take time from their busy lives to dust off the history books and learn the truth about what various Liberal and Red Tory governments, the media and leftwing academia have been lying about for decades – that the right to keep and bear arms is not exclusively an American liberty.

What!!! you say? That’s preposterous! There is no right to bear arms in Canada. Never has been. Never will be. The basis of our ancient English common law rights, the Magna Carta, established in 1215, enshrined the right of freemen to keep and bear arms for the defense of their homes and the nation.

Flash forward almost five centuries later to 1689. For the better part of fifty years, a continuous succession of internal conflicts destabilized England, which had been governed, albeit unsuccessfully, as a republic from 1649 – 1660.

Though sympathetic to the Monarchy, our ancestors persevered to severally limit the power of the King and fought to place even stronger protections on their ageless freedoms. This brought about the English Bill of Rights (where America’s founding fathers derived the Second Amendment), a revision of our first great constitution, which unequivocally states: “Subjects which are Protestants may have Arms for their Defence”.

Okay, so times have changed – just a bit. But I’m quite sure Catholics as well as non–Christians and even atheists are just as capable of exercising their God–given/natural rights as are their Protestant counterparts.

This right (which Lord William Blackstone declared to be ‘absolute’ in his commentaries on English law) was carried prominently into our nation’s rich heritage by way of the British North America Act, forever preserved during the signing of Confederation in 1867.

While it may be true when former prime minister Pierre Elliot Trudeau repatriated the Canadian constitution in 1982, the great legal minds of the era forgot to (or did they?) incorporate the long–standing right of gun ownership – overtly, at least. Not to worry though, because it can be found under Section 26, which states: “Certain rights and freedoms shall not be construed as denying the existence of any other rights or freedoms that exist in Canada.”

In this day and age of legislated liberties, the concept of natural rights – especially in many westernized nations (not just Canada) – has become as foreign as arranged marriages and genital mutilation.

Too often, people merely accept government-made laws that violate the very inalienable rights every man, woman and child on this planet is born with – the most important of which includes the right to own arms for self–defense, free expression the right to own property.

In April 2012, Prime Minister Stephen Harper took a small though significant step towards restoring our ancient freedoms by dismantling the much–maligned long gun registry. In spite of this small victory, we have yet to gain the high ground with regards to reestablishing gun ownership as an inherent right in our society, as opposed to a mere ‘privilege’ given or taken away at the whim of a distant, faceless firearms bureaucracy.

It has been said time and again that individuals who don’t know their rights technically don’t have any. Perhaps it’s high time we as a society became less complacent and more familiar with our natural rights and vigorously oppose those politicians and bureaucrats who so callously wish to extinguish them.

Because, at the end of the day, the only rights we truly have are the ones we are willing to fight for.


7 thoughts on “No Right to Bear Arms in Canada? You might want to re-check your history.

  1. The right to self defense in not an “American” thing. It’s wired into the DNA of every creature with a heart beat. It is(arguably)the most primal instinct in nature..ALL nature. And in a day and age where criminals can and do get their hands on any and every type of weapon, why should anyone be able to tell any of us whether we can or can’t defend ourselves and our families on equal terms? No it’s not an American thing…it’s a human thing.
    It’s natural law.

  2. Is there any real traction with this? Is anyone stepping up to base for us? Are Canadians just SOL and forever at the mercy of our Law Enforcement and Criminals? One thinks itself above the law and the other acts outside of it. We poor bastards whom obey it are left with nothing.

    Will we ever see the light?

    1. Well, for any idea to gain traction it takes individuals taking action to ensure it does. I would encourage you to write your MP/MLA and explain your position on this issue to them. Then send me a copy of the letter and I”ll post it here. The more of us who make our voices known the better.

      Only when a politician realizes that NOT doing something will cost him/her an election will they take action. That’s their nature, so let’s work with that. :)

  3. travis macintyre
    Picture of travis macintyre

    Mr Rafferty:

    My name is Travis MacIntyre and I am a resident of Fort Frances, ON.

    I would like to express my opinion to you about gun control. I am a law abiding citizen, and while I do not currently own a firearm, I am looking to purchase one very soon. I was very glad to see the long gun registry scrapped. It happened way too late and never should have been started in the first place, as the huge sums of money that were spent could have been much better spent elsewhere, such as education, health care, hiring more police officers or KEEPING DANGEROUS CRIMINALS BEHIND BARS and not have them let out after ridiculously short prison terms only to recidivate. It is of my opinion that the handgun registry should be scrapped as well, and along with it, the need for responsible, law abiding handgun owners to have to go blind filling out paper work every time they want to go to the range to compete or for leisure. Criminals intent on obtaining firearms, and using firearms in the commission of crimes are quite frankly NOT going to jump through all the legal hoops the rest of us are forced to do. Gun registry does not stop criminals who obtain firearms illegally. It only punishes the law abiding.

    It sickens me that here in Canada, that we have a justice system that would rather make an example of a man like Ian Thompson who’s only “crime” was defending his life and property from being destroyed, rather than the perpetrators who TRIED TO BURN DOWN HIS HOUSE WITH HIM IN IT! But because he responded to that threat with a firearm, even though he shot no one, crown prosecutors tried to hang him.

    It is for that and other reasons, that I ask you to support the right of law abiding citizens to enjoy their shooting sports and hunting without all the undue and unnecessary paperwork and expense that is incurred, by advocating to repeal the handgun registry and the ATT. I also ask you to support the right of Canadians to be able to protect themselves (all threats, man or beast) by advocating for individuals, who so choose, the right to carry a handgun or other firearms. There is a proven statistical correlation between being allowed to carry and conceal, and lower incidence of violent crimes, in areas of the United States that allow it. To put it bluntly, if i were the type of person who liked to mug people, or break into peoples houses, or rob a store, I would be more inclined to do so here in Canada, as I would say, in Texas. Canadians are in general, much easier targets for violent crime, because the criminals know that basically only police officers, and now CBSA officers, carry weapons.

    Thank you.

    Sincerely: Travis MacIntyre

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