With the bodies not even cold and the Australian media in complete damage control over the Osmington mass shooting, the Alannah and Madeline Foundation’s Phil West, also a former member of Gun Control Australia, decided to one-up AMF CEO Lesley Podesta’s “all gun owners are unemployed victims of globalisation who need a gun to feel more masculine” remark with this absolute cancer in Domainfax:
“The mass murder near Margaret River in Western Australia makes a lie of the gun lobby’s hollow rhetoric in opposition to strengthening our nation’s gun-ownership and gun-security laws.
Three generations of the one family have been wiped out. Two grandparents, their daughter and her four children aged 8 to 13. When gun law reform is discussed, weapon enthusiasts and the gun lobby argue that only legal gun-owners will be affected by changes that seek to enhance safety or restrict gun use.
However, all legal owners of firearms – such as farmers or weekend pig-hunters – are responsible, legal gun owners until they become irresponsible and kill spouses, former partners, children and others. They are responsible until they have a breakdown, suffer depression, get drunk or take ice. It is mostly their own families who are the victims.
“The horror at Margaret River, the worst since Port Arthur in 1996, must be a game-changer. One day a responsible gun owner is using his weapon to kill vermin. The next it could be his family.
Almost all people who have not been in trouble with the law or who have not had a mental health episode known to authorities are deemed “fit and proper” to hold a gun license. Their mental health episode – or an argument with their partner or neighbour – may come the following week or month. They are then a person with mental stress, anger or depression with a high-powered killing machine.
Urban gun owners should not be allowed to hold their weapons in houses in the suburbs and the sale quantity of ammunition should be highly regulated. Guns should be held in a secure lock-up in a police station and the gun enthusiast must provide two weeks’ notice of intention to use the gun, with details of where and with whom they will go with the weapon. They would pick up the weapon on the morning it is required and return it within seven days. No non-farmer should be allowed to own more than one firearm.
If, after returning from a hunting trip and handing in their gun, the gun owner takes ice, has a fight with a partner or a depressive episode, their gun will not be available to be used to murder in anger, depression or delusion.
In rural communities, as soon as someone is no longer an active farmer, because they have retired, are unable to work due to a disability or have sold the farm and live in town, they should not be allowed to own weapons unless they change their ownership status to that of a registered hunter. The same storage conditions for this non-active farmer would then apply.
For active farmers who need guns for vermin and other reasons, the security of gun holdings should be legislatively controlled. Thousands of guns are targeted for theft from rural or outer-urban properties every year by criminal gangs. 27,000 guns were stolen between 2007 and 2017. This is a horrific figure.”
You can go read the rest of this if you can forsake the IQ points.
While this is, no doubt, partially clickbait agitprop to inflate Domainfax’s falling circulation numbers, West’s drivel is also outright slander against gun owners.
Western Australia has by far the strictest firearm laws in the country, yet West’s assertion is to tighten said laws which would affect only (drumroll) gun owners. How exactly does that disprove the gun lobby’s argument? It doesn’t. Case in point: how did WA’s ridiculous ‘military appearance’ law stop a tragedy like this?
The logic that everyone is responsible until they’re not is a complete garbage line of reasoning. Why not just remove the presumption of innocence western society is founded on, have minority report and be done with it?
Everyone’s a responsible car owner until they decide to drive up the footpath at Bourke or Flinders Street and mow down pedestrians or drive their children into a dam.
Everyone’s a responsible drinker until they decide to get drunk and one-punch someone.
Everyone’s a responsible knife owner until they decide to use a kitchen knife to slaughter 8 of their children, as was the case in Cairns in 2014.
How quickly he also forgets the child killed in Lalor Park by a crook who left an illegal gun within reach of a child. Absolutely no mention of that by the Alannah and Madeline Foundation at the time for obvious reasons.
West’s suggestions are ludicrous. Give two weeks’ notice to use a firearm? Great, so West’s solution is to tie up Police in even more paperwork and bureaucratic nonsense for no proven benefit to community safety, while the illegal firearm market continues unabated and would probably grow as a result. I’d love to see how that would work in Victoria, given the current debacle with LRD and the crime wave that Police have their hands full with.
His claim about firearm thefts doubling since 2007 are ridiculous, as the number stolen as a percentage of all firearms owned in Australia is literally nothing, as this is what they were in 2007 from the Australian Institute of Criminology themselves:
Yeh, totally ‘horrific’.
It’s fair to say that West has no idea what the current laws are, but that’s par for the course for the professional anti-gun lobby in Australia. West finishes off his ‘argument’ with the usual appeal to emotion over the death of children – something AMF has been doing in a professional capacity for 22 years now with Walter Mikac’s children – and wants federal and state ministers to ‘examine his ideas’.
Au contraire, it’s time we examined the Alannah and Madeline Foundation to see exactly where their money is coming from and going, why they get so much airtime and to confirm whether they are an actual charity or a gun control lobby group masquerading as one – particularly when you have the current Prime Minister as it’s personal patron.
Given this being the latest in a string of embarrassing statements coming out of your organisation Peter, it’s best you kept your mouth shut and not remove all doubt that you are indeed, a fool.