The plans for an European-wide gun ban are still being discussed at the European Parliament, Commission, and Council.
After the latest, shameful attempt to have it « swiftly passed » after the March 22nd Brussels bombing, a hope comes from where the European gun owners’ community expected it the least: Great Britain.
And indeed a British Member of the European Parliament − Vicky Ford, President of Internal Market and Consumer Protection committee of the European Parliament (IMCO) − published her draft report on the EU gun ban proposal on March 29th.
Honestly put, Mrs. Ford’s draft has its peaks and troughs: on one hand, it would ditch the ban on civilian « Category B7 » modern sporting rifles, but on the other hand it would still ban demilitarized firearms (those full-automatic firearms that were permanently converted to semi-auto for civilian sales); on one hand, it would ditch restrictions on replicas and deactivated guns, but on the other hand it would keep collectors within the scope of the Directive; and its formulation concerning the activities regarding the modification of firearms and ammunition components could leave doors open for anti-gun European governments to restrict or ban ammunition reloading.
It’s thus all but perfect, but nonetheless it is a better starting point than we could ever expect.
Given the draconian British gun laws and the lack of « sensibility » regarding the needs and rights of gun ownership in Britain; given how the British government is indeed one of the main sponsors of the planned EU gun ban; and given how Vicky Ford and many other MEPs have been (and still are) under a tremendous amount of pressure by their national Governments and by the European Commission and Council to have the EU gun ban passed in the worst possible way; all being considered, Mrs. Ford’s document was meant from the very beginning as a compromise between the dictatorial requests of the European Commissions and the rights of the gun owners’ community in twenty-eight Member states.
Being a draft, there’s still room for improvement: European shooters, hunters, collectors, and gun owners and enthusiasts at large (as well as deactivated guns owners and airsoft owners) should keep up the pressure on their MEP − particularly on IMCO members − to have the draft modified for the best rather than for the worst, as the European institutions would like. The Ministers of Justice and Home Affairs of the European Union will meet next April 11th, and we can expect that they will somehow try and act in that direction.
Speaking of bad news, instead, we should point out the answer to a Parlaimentary question, published on March 31th by Elżbieta Bieńkowska − the European Commissioner for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs − concerning the proposed restrictive amendment to the European firearms directive.
Not only has Mrs. Bieńkowska rehearsed the well known lies in terms of gun crime, murders and thefts to support the EU gun ban proposal.
Of course she avoided to mention that the opinions of those stakeholders were sistematically ignored, in favour of the false and misleading data fabricated by NGOs and European entities such as the EESC that support the ban.
FIREARMS UNITED clarified its position with a post on its Facebook page:
The organization was « asked as a stakeholder », but didn’t take part in the study, and all its suggestions and proposals were outright ignored.
The circus of lies and misinformation continues, as the European Commission and other supporters of the EU gun ban show day after day to what extent they’re willing to go to disarm the law-abiding citizens of Europe.
On the French front − as we know, the French Government is an outright supporter of the planned ban − French Minister of Home Affairs Bernard Cazeneuve met on March 31st with Thierry Coste, President of the « Comité Guillaume Tell » that represents (or should represent) gun owners, shooters, hunters, gun shops, distributors, and manufacturers all around France.
After the meeting, the French Ministry of Interior published a press release that basically contradicts all reassurances given by the Comité Guillaume Tell to the French shooting community before March 31st.
According to the Ministry, the Comité Guillaume Tell would have agreed to work on a platform that includes the « prohibition of certain particularly dangerous semi-automatic firearms, particularly those built after full-automatic guns ».
It’s now adamantly clear to French and European shooters how the Comité Guillaume Tell betrayed the shooters’ community and its own name, siding with those who would rather see the peoples of Europe disarmed.