Two sides shooting symbols at each other: Brian Given on Gun Culture in Canada

Candice Hoeppner’s private members bill to do away with the long gun registry goes to vote today. I know everyone has been following with interest the vote counting on this over the past few weeks, watching as a dozen or so NDP MPs respect the wish of their constituents flip flop¬†opt to change their original vote in favour of the bill. Tonight’s vote, as I’m sure others will say, is a bit strange, as voting for the motion is actually voting to keep the registry. I’m going to do the nerd thing and ask the bar to switch to CPAC to watch the action.

In any case, yesterday I had the opportunity to chat with Carleton anthropology professor Brian Given on the matter of Gun Culture in Canada. We avoided the particular strengths and weaknesses of the registry, as that’s been covered elsewhere, instead looking to bridge the gap about why there’s so much passion on either side of this, but especially on the gun owners side.

Brian expressed some reservation afterwards that he might have come off as too pro-gun (which I don’t think he did), but as a matter of perspective, his other interests include¬†Tibetan culture and for a time he didn’t eat meat. Stereotypical gun-nut he is not, but I do think that he offered some good insight as a sort-of-outsider into the attitudes and perspectives of gun owners, something that people that don’t use guns (like myself) often don’t have and, even worse, don’t often consider.