The Canadian province of Quebec has come to recognize at least a little bit of reality.
You see, while a lot of Quebecois may support gun control, a lot of Quebecois gun owners aren’t interested in registering their guns. This appears to have pressured the government into easing some of its regulations in hopes of encouraging more to obey the draconian and useless law.
Quebec’s long gun registry will come into force as scheduled next week, but the public security minister offered concessions Wednesday to gun owners who have been slow to sign up.
Genevieve Guilbault told reporters the Coalition Avenir Quebec government will introduce a bill easing some of the rules in the legislation, which was adopted in 2016 under the previous Liberal government.
Guilbault made clear the government remains committed to the registry, which some would like to see abolished. “There is a law, and the law as well as the registry are here to stay, so people have to comply,” Guilbault told reporters in Quebec City. “They have a few days left to register their guns legally, because as of Jan. 30, fines could apply.”
With the Jan. 29 deadline for registering less than a week away, Guilbault said about 350,000 people have listed their weapons, with a notable uptick this month. The total is less than a quarter of the 1.6 million long guns — mostly shotguns and rifles — estimated to be owned by Quebecers.
Guilbault said the proposed amendments were a response to gun owners’ concerns that were ignored by the previous government. Once the amendments are passed, gun owners will no longer have to notify the registry if they have their firearm away from its usual storage location for more than two weeks. That period — considered too short by hunters who spend long periods in the bush — will be extended, but Guilbault did not say for how long.
Of course, there are a lot of people up that way who aren’t going to register their guns no matter what. Some of them are defiant as hell and just aren’t going to tell the government what they have and how many they have.
I don’t blame them.
There are also the criminals who are never going to comply anyway. After all, they’re criminals. Duh.
For some reason, the Quebecois government seems to think its registration efforts will work better than the federal government’s efforts, but they’re going to do it anyway.
That really does lend credence to the argument that gun control isn’t about guns but about control. There’s ample evidence in Canada that registration doesn’t work, but the government’s going to do it anyway. Why? Because it can. Because it can tell people who own guns what to do and make damn sure they know it.
So, honestly? I don’t expect anyone to jump up and down complying with registration just because of promises of bills to be introduced. If they do, they’re probably too stupid to know how to pull a trigger in the first place.
But whatever helps those Quebecois lawmakers sleep at night, I suppose.