Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Blue Line police gun registry survey disavowed

The publisher of the magazine, Blue Line, issues a strongly worded clarification of what's transpired. The use of capital letters is his:
Randy Kuntz went on national news to support his anti firearms registry position by pointing to me and "Blue Line Magazine". His attempt to damage the magazine's neutral position is out of line along with semi-breaching the sanctity of this section of the Forum.

So he has forced my hand to take a position on the issue:

Here it is and I have shared it with others as far as it can go:

1. BLUE LINE MAGAZINE DID NOT PUBLISH NOR DID IT ENDEAVOUR TO WRITE A STORY ABOUT A SURVEY AS SUGGESTED BY KUNTZ. OUR POSITION HAS BEEN NEUTRAL UP TO NOW.
2. THE PRIVATE POLICE ONLY SECTION OF THE BLUE LINE FORUM IS CLOSED AND NOT TO BE DISCUSSED PUBLICLY.
3. THE OPINIONS FROM THE PRIVATE SECTION ARE MIXED AND INCONCLUSIVE IN THAT ONLY THOSE WITH STRONG FEELINGS ABOUT IT WOULD POST. THE POSTS WERE FROM APRIL TO MAY 2009. THERE WERE FEW POSTS BUT HE DID ASK PEOPLE WITH OPINIONS TO SEND HIM A PRIVATE MESSAGE.
4. MEDIA AND POLITICAL HYPE IS BACKWARDS. THE REGISTRY IS ABOUT RESPONSIBLE FIREARMS OWNERSHIP NOT POLICE USE. POLICE ARE CALLED UPON TO REFER TO IT FOR MANY REASONS BUT JUST LIKE RESPONSIBLE CAR OWNERS, RESPONSIBLE BOAT OWNERS AND RESPONSIBLE HOME OWNERS HAVE A REGISTRY, FIREARMS SHOULD BE NO DIFFERENT.POLICE INTEREST IS REALLY ONLY WHEN THEY ARE STOLEN, STORED, REGISTERED OR USED IMPROPERLY.
5. REGISTRY IS A FORM OF INSURANCE FOR OWNERS IN THAT IF THEY ARE STOLEN RECOVERY IS ENHANCED.
6. THE MONEY HAS BEEN BLOWN (RIGHTLY OR WRONGLY) AND IF SO WE MUST SALVAGE WHAT WE CAN. IF WE NEED TO THROW OUT PORTIONS THEN DO SO. BUT NOT THE WHOLE THING. THAT WOULD NOT BE RESPONSIBLE MANAGEMENT. (IF A HOUSE IS EXTRAVAGANTLY BUILT THE WRONG WAY WE DO NOT PUT THE ENTIRE HOUSE IN THE DUMPSTER.)7. WE DID PUBLISH A STORY FROM THE CANADIAN FIREARMS ASSN A FEW YEARS AGO (NOT SURE RIGHT NOW BUT ABOUT 8 YEARS AGO) WHERE THEY ESPOUSED A REGISTRY OF THEIR OWN. WHY NOT HAVE GOVT AND ASSOCIATION GET TOGETHER ON THIS.I THINK THAT IS ABOUT ALL FOR NOW.

--Morley S. Lymburner
Publisher
Blue Line Magazine Inc.Celebrating 22 Years! www.blueline.ca
A helpful clarification that is. Interesting to note the publisher's time-lining of the Constable Kuntz forum "survey" as being centred upon two months over a year ago, in "April to May 2009" whereas it was reported that the survey occurred over a period of 14 months ("Over the course of 14 months, Const. Kuntz said, he received online responses and emails from 2,631 police officers.") So two months of responses in the forum plus 12 months of personal emails? That sounds like what's happened here.

The larger point, this non-public, untested, unverifiable, unscientific "survey" of emails and whatever unknown else it was, contained in that private forum, should never have received the national prominence that it did this week. Yet somehow, it was offered up in story after story and featured on national newscasts as authoritative (see Roger Smith report here for example), giving the public the impression that indeed there was some kind of survey of police officers which showed widespread police opposition to the long gun registry. A position not held by the representative body of Canadian police officers.

Anyway, looks like this oddity of the week now seems to be put to rest.