The massacre at Port Arthur on April 28, 1996, was the lynchpin for the Howard Government to implement strict gun control. The buy-back of almost 700,000 guns cost Australian taxpayers over $500 million. The forced buy-back was indiscriminate, netting relics, family heirlooms and prized possessions. Sadly, they were handed over for the same price as worthless firearms and those who surrendered them were given a few hundred dollars. The reality is it was only the honest that handed their guns in, not the criminals.
Pauline Hanson’s One Nation is not opposed to gun control, but does oppose taking guns by stealth from law-abiding Australians. Guns have always been a part of our culture and were instrumental in the defence of our country during World War Two.
Gun laws in Australia are stringent on law-abiding citizens. It is the government’s responsibility to take stronger action against criminals. In almost 100 per cent of offences committed with a gun, the offender was not licensed and the weapon was stolen or acquired unlawfully. The Federal Government has a lot to answer for with regards to border security and the serious lack of inspecting containers arriving at our ports. Most illegally imported guns are a result of poor border security.
Statistics show that the majority of stolen guns are taken from the police and defence forces. The government must, as a matter of urgency, teach its own forces better gun management and storage, so their weapons do not end up in the hands of criminals.
Pauline Hanson’s One Nation firearms policy is based on the following principles:
Shooting is a legitimate sport and pastime and participants should be treated accordingly.
Australians have the right to defend themselves and their families in their own homes.
Disarming law-abiding Australians is not in the national interest and will do nothing to reduce crime.