Firearms United president Tomasz W. Stępień had the honor to deliver the final remarks of the conference, and did so with a vengeance. His remarks were probably the most intense and vibrant speech of the day.
While political correctness allows gun owners to be the only part of society that can legitimately be victimized by deliberate attacks, anti-gun political leaders live in their ivory towers surrounded by armed bodyguards and plot the disarmament of their citizens.
The European Commission’s EU Gun Ban plans also target collectors, and quite heavily so: they would be forced to permanently alter, deactivate, or even turn in for destruction many firearms of great economic, historic and cultural value because the European Commission considers them “too dangerous” to be left in the hands of average citizens.
FESAC chairman Stephen A. Petroni once again denounced how the European Commission willfully and maliciously compares legitimate gun collectors with illegal hoarders and identifies them as “possible sources of firearms” for the black market in order to justify restrictions against them.
The European Commission has so far failed to support the EU Gun Ban plans with an impact assessment – most likely because carrying on an impact assessment would cripple the gun ban plans, as its outcomes would seriously contradict the anti-gun agenda. Two members of the first panel brought on their own evaluation, with facts and figures, that were the true centerpieces of the event.
Katja Triebel, head of research for the Firearms United network, introduced her own impact assessment – a document drafted closely following the EU impact assessment guidelines, largely based on many of the documents that the European Commission is trying to use to justify its ban plans, and impressive both in terms of detail and sheer workload that was necessary to generate it.
Swedish scholar and political consultant Erik Lakomaa had its own study to introduce, an in-depth evaluation of the effects of the European firearms directive in its current form – a field where the lack of research is unfortunately noticeable.
Leaving out all political evaluations, Erik Lakomaa’s research is based on facts and numbers, and shows that no law passed so far, anywhere in the world, to limit availability of firearms, ammunition and accessories, ever had any impact on crime, because there is no positive correlation between legally-owned firearms and crime.
In September they interviewed well known dynamic sportshooter Pia Clerté and Stockholm School of Economics researcher Erik Lakomaa regarding the Firearms Directive.
EU’s weapons Directive wants to make it difficult for terrorists and criminals to obtain weapons. But in Sweden it hits hard only marksmen and hunters – law-abiding gun owners. Pia Clerté will not be able to practice her sport if the directive goes through.
Researcher Erik Lakomaa says that politicians and officials are not guided by facts, and that the weapons criminals use are smuggled in from the Balkans. “The only way to stop them is to focus on border controls.”
On our BACKGROUND page we list all interesting informations and arguments against the EU gunban. Feel free to read our reports and answers and use the arguments when you write to or call your politician or talk to a journalist.
The IMCO Rapporteur and MEPs tabled 847 amendments. The Compromise Amendments have been drawn up and the committee will vote on the final list on 14th July.
The prospects of a favorable vote that rejects most of the Commission proposals are good. The statements by MEPs during the debate on the amendments indicate majority support for our arguments.
This has been achieved through careful discourse with the MEPsand we shall continue along that path. We draw your attention that no matter how upset you may be with the EU you must always retain a polite and civil attitude in your contacts with MEPs. Focus on the S&D members as the more we win over the greater our chances of success.
The General Approach approved by the Council of Ministers leads to a public outcry over useless measures against legal firearm ownership with little or no effect on criminal and terrorist activity.
Criticism has been voiced by associations of stakeholders as well as some police forces and local media, in other words those who understand the impact of the amendments and their enforcement.
Support for the Council’s position comes from advocates of stricter firearm control who display an abysmal lack of knowledge about the actual directive, the amendments and particularly about the clear distinction between legal firearm ownership and criminality.
German State Secretary Emily Haber was naively pleased that “in future all firearms will be registered”. The Socialist group’s “gun control expert” Evelyne Gebhardt (SPD, DE), wants to ban illicit manufacturers who illegally modify weapons and sell them over the illegal darknet (meaning that she expects criminals to observe measures which are already banned under the current Directive. Commissioner Avramopoulos (DG Home) used Orlando, Paris I and II (and in the past even Brussels when bombs but no firearms were used) as a reason for banning legally-held firearms to stop terrorism and crime – he does not want any firearm which looks alike AK-47 or AR15 in civilian hands. In practice this means the banning of the modern sporting rifles used by law-abiding citizens.
Do these people live in the real world? Thankfully they are far from winning the war. The process has a long way to go and we are turning the tide.
We must convince the majority of MEPs (more than 350) that in the absence of an impact assessment the Commission proposal violates the principles of subsidiarity and proportionality and the damage to law-abiding citizens and business far outweigh the minimal impact on terrorism and crime.
We are spurred on by our victory during the LIBE vote on 9th May when MEPs rejected most of the unreasonable amendments. Moreover the debate in IMCO is moving in our direction and we must press on for a full rejection in the vote of 14th July.