On opening our May 7, 2020 edition of The Carillon we noted three lengthy columns (pages 6 and 7) criticizing, and in one case insulting, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau personally on the government’s proposed stricter gun control measures, including a ban of more than 1,000 models and variants of "assault-style weapons." We could find no contrary view anywhere in the paper.
Further to this, it was with great disappointment we read Michael Zwaagstra’s column, "Useless PM implements useless gun ban." Our concern about this article is the personal attack on our prime minister with its angry and disrespectful rhetoric.
The topic of firearms has forever been a hotly debated issue. Gun enthusiasts who oppose the ban whether they are collectors, hobbyists or use guns for their source of food, are passionate about it. Those favouring the ban are equally passionate. There is a definite divide in Canadian opinion about firearms, and neither side will convince the other they are right any time soon.
What is important, is that if the debate continues, and in Canada everyone has the privilege to voice their point of view, it be carried out in a tone of civility, with things kept in perspective, and asking: is the ban promoting the common good?
Mr. Zwaagstra, as a high school teacher, city councillor and columnist, you have enormous influence in the classroom and in community involvement. With that influence goes a responsibility to be a positive role model (especially for impressionable students).
As a role model, is angry and disrespectful the image you wish to portray?