With the tragedy that befell Ontario Provincial Police Constable Vu Pham still fresh in the minds of Canadians, it should be considered unsurprising that Toronto Star columnist Antonia Zerbisias intends to take full advantage.
Zerbisias, as many should recall, has a significant obsession with the long gun registry. Her numerous columns on the topic are a continual re-hash of poorly-conceived and largely-undefended arguments in favour of the long gun registry that, although they are tailor-made to be ideologically soothing to supporters of the registry, don't hold much basis in logic.
Among the various instances of anti-Conservative grandstanding, however, Zerbisias offers this particular nugget:
"Candice Hoeppner, the Manitoba Conservative MP who last May introduced the bill to kill the registry, would write, in an opinion piece published by the London Free Press, 'The long-gun registry is a massive Liberal policy failure and it needs to end. It makes no sense to force law-abiding individuals with firearms licences to register their long-guns. It makes no sense to believe the registry will prevent a gun crime from taking place.'It's remarkable that Zerbisias would spare such candor in her writing -- it certainly doesn't happen very often.
Well, that's true. It certainly didn't save Constable Vu Pham, who died just northwest of London."
But if one wonders precisely why Zerbsias would insist that the gun registry must be maintained even if it doesn't prevent crime, one may lose their mind at the logical inconsistency of Zerbisias' next remark:
"But it may have saved Barbara Preston, the wife of the accused killer, Fred Preston, 70, who died last night.Zerbisias then goes on to insist that gun control is a matter of gender politics -- which is a canard of magnificent proportions.
Numerous news reports and sources indicate that Fred Preston, despondent over the separation last year from his childhood sweetheart, had headed out to find her.
What happened on that lonely back road on Monday is still unclear. What is known is, Pham, on his way to that 'domestic' call, was shot when he attempted to stop a white pick-up truck. A gun fight broke out, killing Pham and, eventually, Preston."
First off, gun control is not an issue of gender politics. Secondly, the long gun registry is not actually a tool of gun control.
But even beyond that, Zerbisias' "logic" resembles nothing of the sort. If the long gun registry failed to prevent Fred Preston from driving out to confront his wife with a gun, and failed to prevent the death of Constable Pham, then one may wonder how Zerbisias expects anyone to believe that it would have prevented the death of Barbara Preston.
No. It was the intervention of Constable Vu Pham that saved the life of Barbara Preston.
Antonia Zerbisias oddly doesn't seem to care about that particular detail. Rather, all she seems to be interested in is using Pham's death for some anti-conservative grand standing.
It makes one wonders precisely what standard of editorial scrutiny Zerbisias' work is subjected to at the Star. When this kind of lunacy can so easily be published in the Lifestyles section of that paper, it makes one suspect that the answer is "not much".