Tuesday, September 18, 2007


Roland Browne of the National Coalition for Gun Control on state governments allowing armed children to roam amongst us:
In 1996 the Commonwealth and the States and Territories decided upon a response to the mass shooting at Port Arthur in Tasmania.

In that shooting 35 people were murdered and 18 people grievously injured by a young man using two high powered semi-automatic rifles. Australia was stunned by the lethal capacity of these weapons in the hands of a civilian.

The response was swift.

Led by Prime Minister John Howard, only months into his first term of government, the National Firearms Agreement between the Commonwealth and States and Territories introduced a set of minimum standards for the possession, use, storage and availability of rifles and shotguns across Australia. One of the key resolutions in the Agreement was that the minimum age for a gun licence in Australia was 18 years. No exception to this rule was provided for.
Eleven years later, the National Firearms Agreement and the buyback of weapons around Australia has been very successful.

However, it has not yet fulfilled the principal criteria set by the Prime Minister in 1996. That is, to lead Australia well away from the American gun culture.

All States and Territories are in breach of the National Firearms Agreement in numerous and varied ways. Of particular concern is that in every State and Territory children under the age of 18 are able to obtain a permit for the possession and use of a firearm.
Why our leaders are content to allow children as young as four or five or six in WA and NT (where there is no minimum age limit), and as young as 12 in NSW, Tasmania and Victoria, and 11 in Queensland, to carry guns and use them is mystifying.

I know the shooters claim this early use is necessary as training for kids. In my view it is indoctrination; kids neither need a gun, nor to know how to use a gun.
Well, apparently all the youngsters engaging in playground shootouts and knocking-over corner shops are carrying unlicenced weapons:
Under Section 10 of the Firearms Act the minimum age for the issue of a license or permit in Western Australia is 18.
Maybe governments should address the much bigger problem posed by kids with rocks.

Update: This rock-throwing thing is getting out of hand:
A teenage boy is in a critical condition with head injuries after being hit by a rock thrown though an open car window at Allambie Heights, in Sydney's north.

The 17-year-old Brookvale boy tonight remained in a critical but stable condition after undergoing surgery at Royal North Shore Hospital.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

In my view it is indoctrination; kids neither need a gun, nor to know how to use a gun.

Yes. I can see his point. If only I was indocrinated by the age of five to be a self righteous turd instead of learning how to shoot a gun. Then I too could have lived a full and meaningful life getting my knickers in a twist about how other people choose to live their lives.

Full disclosure: since I was five, I have set a target of doubling the number of people I shoot each year. I must say now that I'm over 40, this has become rather a challenge.

10:06 PM  

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