Toronto’s city council has recently decided to install a ban on all handgun sales after a mass shooting in the city left three people dead. This is a striking measure, especially when compared to how U.S. politicians have recently approached gun control legislation.
The city’s mayor, John Tori, was blunt and direct when addressing the subject at a city council meeting.
“Why does anyone in this city need to have a gun at all?”
Tori was fast to respond to a shooting on one of the city’s busiest avenues, which killed two girls and injured over ten people. Such an incident is somewhat rare in the city of Toronto, and it caused outrage among its citizens.
On Tuesday, the council voted to apply a total ban on handgun sales and ammunition sales. The legislation passed with a vast approval rate of 41-4. The legislation’s success was attributed to Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau’s liberal ideals. and specified that ammunition sales should also be prohibited.
The legislation also focused on applying stricter background checks to people who want to buy any sort of gun.
The difference between gun control in the U.S. and Canada could not be starker.
Members of Toronto’s council even stated:
“What’s happened in the United States is what not to do.”
Toronto has also responded to growing concerns regarding public shootings, as there have been over two hundred so far this year.
Prior to this legislation, applications for handguns were already difficult to obtain in Canada. Handguns could only be owned if the subject needed a gun for work purposes. Canada’s laws also specified that potential owners of handguns needed to undergo two training sessions with government instructors.
Some legislators have stated that it is unclear whether the council’s proposition will actually go through and be approved in the future, as it would require for a careful rewriting of the country’s criminal code. Nevertheless, their voices have been heard.
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