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#248651 - 07/17/12 03:45 PM Urban Canadians ... firearms?
Denis Offline
Addict

Registered: 01/09/09
Posts: 631
Loc: Calgary, AB
I've read a bit on how firearms can fit in to ones overall preparedness plans, but I am having a bit of a hard time figuring how they best fit into the picture for urban Canadians like myself, or even if they fit at all.

So, for those of you in the same boat as me, or who are familiar with the restrictions & constraints of urban Canadian living, how do you see firearms fitting into your overall preparedness picture? In what ways do you think firearms can be beneficial in your situation and, specifically, how do you approach this within our legal & regulatory framework?
_________________________
Victory awaits him who has everything in order luck, people call it. Defeat is certain for him who has neglected to take the necessary precautions in time; this is called bad luck. Roald Amundsen

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#248656 - 07/17/12 04:45 PM Re: Urban Canadians ... firearms? [Re: Denis]
jzmtl Offline
Addict

Registered: 03/18/10
Posts: 530
Loc: Montreal Canada
I really don't see it as useful unless you are facing some sort of eotwawki situation (which is extremely unlikely), there are just too many restrictions and stereotypes for it to work. Have someone kicking your doors down? Better convince the robbers to wait while you take your firearm out of the safe. I recall on the news some guy had vandals firebombing his house, he fired warning shot in the air. The cops came, didn't even bother looking for the vandals, just arrested and charged him for unsafe storing of firearm.

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#248657 - 07/17/12 04:47 PM Re: Urban Canadians ... firearms? [Re: Denis]
cfraser Offline
Member

Registered: 06/17/07
Posts: 110
Loc: Toronto area, Ontario, Canada
I think you know how they fit in. You just have to decide if you want to go down that road.

To acquire firearms you need to take a course and get a PAL. Not that hard. For handguns you need a restricted PAL which requires another course. Some places offer both courses plus exams (written and practical) all in one weekend. Not sure how it'll be in Calgary, but around TO these courses fill up really fast. Damn urbanites...

Once you've taken these courses all will be clear. They are not too onerous, and you'll probably especially enjoy the practical parts since it sounds like most of the different firearm actions may be new to you. I think you can find downloads of the various course manuals.

Contrary to what most Canadians think, it is quite legal to walk around inside your house wearing a cowboy hat and a pair of loaded six-shooters, if you want to. Yes, they changed the laws about cowboy hats! It's all about care and control, and a gun within your immediate arm's reach is considered under your control, so it *is* legal to have it loaded in your home. It's the using of it that causes the grief of course. The correct safe storage of guns and ammo when they're not in your care and control is a big course deal too.

If you want to know what I've heard urbanites around here buy for "home use": a shotgun, and/or a light/short semi-auto 9mm rifle for the "lady of the house" if she's smaller. This is not a good topic to discuss publicly in Canada...even more so around the area where I live.

Edit: you used to be able to search the gun registry by postal code (only first 3 letters) so could get an idea of what kind of firearms people in your area had legally acquired.

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#248658 - 07/17/12 05:23 PM Re: Urban Canadians ... firearms? [Re: Denis]
Bingley Offline
Veteran

Registered: 02/27/08
Posts: 1415
I don't know the situation in Canada, but I'd imagine that you'd use firearms for hunting and for defense, if you choose to include firearms in your preparation plan. Practically speaking, it may not take TEOWAWKI to use a firearm. During this last and continuing economic depression, for example, some families have hunted more frequently to put some meat on the table, according to a public radio show. (What a sad thing that is!)

But I do have questions for our Canadian brethren: how easy/hard is it to get quality firearms training (beyond basic safety & handling)? I've noticed that some states in the US have lots of good firearms courses; others, not so much. (Interestingly enough, this doesn't seem to correspond to state law or politics -- but that sort of stuff is not for discussion on this forum. I just want to point out that politics doesn't seem to be a big factor.) If you have to fly somewhere for four days to take a course, that will add potentially a thousand dollars to your expenses.

I'm thinking about this because training makes a HUGE difference. In the words of Col. Jeff Cooper: "You are no more armed because you own a gun than you are a musician because you own a piano. The instrument is not the answer; the skill to use the instrument is the answer." People who buy guns for "home use" without training are virtually naked. (Note that a part of training includes acquiring some legal knowledge about firearms usage, so you won't get arrested for "unsafe storing of firearms.")

A big problem is that anything beyond the basic safety course is quite expensive. You're often looking at $400-$800 for a three-day course. Then there's ammo cost. And there's the cost of maintaining firearms skills, which are perishable if you don't practice. And then you need to take more than one course...

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#248659 - 07/17/12 05:40 PM Re: Urban Canadians ... firearms? [Re: Denis]
cfraser Offline
Member

Registered: 06/17/07
Posts: 110
Loc: Toronto area, Ontario, Canada
^ Yes, those things are a problem. Especially for handguns, you will almost certainly have to join a club, and even those are fewer nowadays. We're speaking for urbanites here, you don't have to go very far into the rural areas where none of these things are the slightest issue.

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#248660 - 07/17/12 05:43 PM Re: Urban Canadians ... firearms? [Re: Denis]
LesSnyder Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 07/11/10
Posts: 1616
Loc: New Port Richey, Fla
comment from a spectator looking in...and not familiar with your laws... and not trying to be a smartass

do you have an other means to stop a violent attack on yourself or your family by possibly multiple assailants?... not referring to property, only violence against individuals

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#248661 - 07/17/12 05:50 PM Re: Urban Canadians ... firearms? [Re: LesSnyder]
Denis Offline
Addict

Registered: 01/09/09
Posts: 631
Loc: Calgary, AB
Originally Posted By: LesSnyder
do you have an other means to stop a violent attack on yourself or your family by possibly multiple assailants?... not referring to property, only violence against individuals

Personally, no I do not. I'm a relatively fit guy but with no self defence training and/or experience at all. At this point I'd pretty much be relying solely on what bravado I could muster and dumb luck if such a situation occurred.
_________________________
Victory awaits him who has everything in order luck, people call it. Defeat is certain for him who has neglected to take the necessary precautions in time; this is called bad luck. Roald Amundsen

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#248662 - 07/17/12 05:51 PM Re: Urban Canadians ... firearms? [Re: Denis]
cfraser Offline
Member

Registered: 06/17/07
Posts: 110
Loc: Toronto area, Ontario, Canada
The basis of the law is you can't use more force than "necessary" to defend yourself. You can't go after the bad guys, once they start fleeing they are legally driven off and you become the attacker. The lawyers have a field day, the law-abiding citizens get short shrift. It's getting better though, the law was just changed to allow a little more leeway to the home-owner etc.

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#248663 - 07/17/12 05:52 PM Re: Urban Canadians ... firearms? [Re: Denis]
jzmtl Offline
Addict

Registered: 03/18/10
Posts: 530
Loc: Montreal Canada
Originally Posted By: LesSnyder
comment from a spectator looking in...and not familiar with your laws... and not trying to be a smartass

do you have an other means to stop a violent attack on yourself or your family by possibly multiple assailants?... not referring to property, only violence against individuals


At home I have machete and tomahawk hanging behind doors, I'd imagine they can do some damage. Outside, since we aren't allowed to carry weapons I guess it's whatever tools of convenience.

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#248666 - 07/17/12 06:50 PM Re: Urban Canadians ... firearms? [Re: Bingley]
haertig Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/13/05
Posts: 2169
Loc: Colorado
The "use" and "need" for firearms in Canada is exactly the same as in the US. Self defense and sustenance hunting. That part doesn't change. The difference is whether that's legal in Canada or not. And if you are willing to break Canadian laws during a disaster situation to protect and/or feed yourself, or would be willing to settle for different results than you might get without a firearm. You may be willing to settle for different results because you don't think the likelyhood of the original event is high. Maybe assaults in Canada are so low that it becomes irrelevent to own a firearm for self defense. That is your call.

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