New South Wales Liberal Democrats Senator David Leyonhjelm has issued a press release warning shooters that they are about to experience a blizzard of misinformation over the next couple of weeks in the lead up to the anniversary of the Port Arthur murders.
Senator Leyonhjelm says it is all politically motivated and urges shooters to use public forums to set the record straight. To help with this, the Senator has addressed some of the false claims and countered them with the facts in the table below.
|False claims||The facts|
|John Howard’s gun laws led to a decrease in gun related deaths.||Gun related deaths in Australia were already declining. There is no evidence gun laws had any additional impact.|
|John Howard’s gun laws were successful in reducing the number of guns in the community, therefore making us all safer.||There are now hundreds of thousands more firearms in the community than in 1996, while the level of firearm crime is still reducing.|
|There are now many more guns in Australia, particularly in some suburbs of our major cities. We should be alarmed.||This is old news. However there is no correlation between the number of guns in various regions and their illegal use. We should welcome increases in the number of guns being used for the eradication of pests, and to increase our chance to win medals in shooting sports.|
|There have been no gun massacres in Australia since John Howard introduced the laws.||There have also been no gun massacres in New Zealand since this time, and they did not change the laws. There have nevertheless been numerous multiple homicides in Australia involving fires, axes, knives and motor vehicles.|
|The Government needs to make a decision on the Adler A110 lever action shotgun.||The government does not need to make any decision – the current restrictions on the seven-shot Adler will be lifted automatically thanks to the government’s deal with Senator Leyonhjelm. There is no logical argument for the Adler A110 to be restricted.|
|The Adler’s availability would represent a significant weakening of Australia’s gun control regime.||There are several other brands of lever action shotguns already available. Lever action rifles have been available for 130 years. No-one has sought to weaken the current gun regime to allow these firearms.|
|The Adler is very rapid fire and high powered.||The Adler fires no more rapidly than other lever action shotguns currently available. The Adler uses the same ammunition as other shotguns currently available.|