Tuesday, June 16, 2020

Labour chickenshits out on gun control

In the wake of the Christchurch Mosque shootings, Labour moved urgently on gun control. Semi-automatic firearms were banned immediately. But their second tranche of legislation, designed to establish a more permanent framework, got bogged down by NZ First. And now it looks like Labour has chickened out, and will let them gut it, in an effort to get it passed before the election:

Plans to set up a gun register could be delayed for up to three years as the Government aims to establish an independent entity to take over firearms licensing and administration from the police.

The move is part of a suite of changes to the Arms Legislation Bill, which saw the Labour Party give in to most of NZ First’s demands.

However, the Bill may not pass before the election, with NZ First MP Ron Mark saying the party was still "disappointed” with the outcome, which did not make exemptions for sporting shooters.

They're also moving to let farmers keep illegal semi-automatic weapons for "pest control", rather than limiting them to a tight group of restricted users. Which basicly means weapons like the ones used to murder people in Christchurch will be in the hands of every farmer in the country, so they can shoot "rabbits".

But this backdown wasn't necessary. Gun control is a hugely popular issue in urban New Zealand. Labour could have simply publicly blamed NZ First for the delay, then campaigned on passing the law without their amendments. Instead, they chose to chicken out, and grovel to a coalition partner who is actively sabotaging a core part of their agenda, when they had no real need to. Its as if having your backbone - or values - surgically removed is a requirement for party membership or something.

Shit like this is why, outside of crises, Labour has been a government of disappointment. And its why their promises mean nothing - whatever they offer, they'll just back down the moment someone disagrees with them. Voters can not and should not trust such cowards.