Canadian Unlicensed Firearms Owners Association
Association canadienne des propriétaires d’armes sans permis

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Press Release
Canadian Unregistered Firearms Owners Association

It's Not about Guns, It's about Self Respect

I have a very tough time explaining succinctly why I am willing to go to prison in protest of the Firearms Act. "Are your guns that important to you ?" While I am formulating a response, people ask me if I "enjoy being a martyr." Then I get sidetracked and answer the second question first.

No, I don't consider myself a martyr. Though I do think that sometimes one needs to be willing to take some actions that may very likely lead to undesirable consequences, prison being one of the prescribed penalties for not conforming to the government's demands. No, I don’t think prison would be an enjoyable break in an otherwise mundane life.

And no, although I an an avid hunter, protecting my ability to hunt is not what motivates me to refuse to comply with the Firearms Act. At my senior age I could license myself and register everything I own and not be bothered while I hunt ducks for the next fifteen years.

No, martyrdom doesn't motivate me nor does protecting my access to hunting.

What motivates me to refuse to submit to this unjust law is self-respect.

I moved to Canada in the summer of 1977 with an old army surplus rifle and a well used shotgun suitable for shooting quail. That fall I discovered duck hunting, and that I needed a dog and a better shotgun if I were to bring home any ducks. In 1978 I bought my first retriever and my first firearm in Canada. But before I did so, I had to apply for, and receive, an FAC (firearm acquisition certificate) from the local police. Reasonable, rational; no one wants criminals having easy access to firearms. I renewed my FAC every five years for ten dollars and began to accumulate old military rifles from country gun shows.

Then in 1989 a deranged person shot a bunch of students in Quebec and my orderly world began rapidly to change. As a firearms owning male, I was suddenly "politically incorrect". The media let me know I was somehow responsible for the killing of fourteen women I had never met. Quickly a new federal law was passed, and I was required to lock up my "guns" in my own house "to prevent needless killing". Somewhat irrational, but not too unreasonable. I purchased locks and complied.

Then came the Firearms Act of 1995. My old ten dollar FAC was replaced with an eighty-five dollar license, which required answering invasive personal questions about my personal habits, who I have known, who I have lived with, what tests I have failed, and what financial setback I have encountered.

If I move I have to report my movements to the police. My home can be searched without a warrant. I can be compelled to testify against myself. And at any time my legally owned firearms can be declared "prohibited" and confiscated. Totally irrational and totally unreasonable.

I will not willingly submit to the loss of personal liberty that is taking place under this unjust, unreasonable, irrational law.

I will not comply. Call it defiance, call it stubbornness, call it foolish.

I call it reclaiming my self respect.

Edward Hudson