By Ryan Crocker
Friday March 31, 2006
Beausejour Review — It’s been just a few short months since Bruce and Donna Montague visited Beausejour to share their story and raise support for their bid to scrap the federal government’s Firearms Act.
It was a story that touched many in this prairie town, itself just one of dozens of cities and towns the Montagues visited on their cross-country tour.
From the day he was arrested at a gun show while trying to buy a saddle for his daughter, to the day they confiscated all of the guns at his gunsmith business. From the day the federal government placed a lean on the home his family built with their own hands, to the day they added half a dozen charges with a minimum one-year sentence to his indictment – it’s been a long and painful struggle for Bruce Montague and his family.
“This is not the country I grew up in. I’m just infuriated by the surreal and extreme measures they’re going to,” Donna Montague told the Review during her visit.
“The federal government has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars, your tax dollars, to persecute us.”
She talked about how frustrated and appalled she is the federal government would come down so hard on an average, working class, Canadian family. She believed the more the legal cards seem stacked in her family’s favour, the more brutally unnecessary the government’s campaign became.
Now, though, there’s a new sheriff in town – or, more accurately, a new Prime Minister on Parliament Hill. When asked whether he believes a Conservative government will make his family’s struggle any easier, Bruce replied, “Yes! Yes! Yes!”
“Our court case is far more political than it is legal. This change in government has made the political winds shift into our favour substantially. We all need to help and encourage our government to fulfill their pledges to Canadians. Now is not the time to just sit back and hope they do their job, let’s keep them in line,” he added.
Keeping government in line is exactly what Bruce Montague hopes to do on Sept. 26 of this year. Two years after he was charged, Montague will finally get his day in court.
“I don’t want to count our chickens too early, but it will definitely feel good to finally get our day in court. The voice of Canadians – especially firearms owners – needs to be heard and acknowledged in our Supreme Court of Canada. Legitimate firearms owners have been persecuted for too long, and this needs to stop,” he said.
“These ‘firearms laws’ also affect non-firearms owners far more than most people realize. One small area that points this out is our right to privacy and freedom from unreasonable search and seizure. Our Firearms Act allows police to come into your home and search it from a mere ‘anonymous tip’. We should be very wary of giving such power to the police and government.”
Bruce Montague and his family will submit a constitutional challenge of the Firearms Act to the courts by April 30.
The submission will highlight all of the ways the Firearms Act violates the Canadian constitution and will borrow significantly from a study by Dr. Ted Morton.
The Morton Summary, as it is called, is a detailed analysis of how the Firearms Act contravenes the Charter of Rights and Freedoms – including the rights to Liberty, Security of Person, Procedural Fairness, Against Unreasonable Search and Seizure, Privacy, Be Presumed Innocent, and many, many others.
As the court date nears, Bruce Montague and his family continue trying to make the best of a bad situation and are thankful for all of the support they’ve received from people across the country, from every political and financial background.
“The response from Canadians we’ve been able to make contact with, has been very positive. Our biggest problem is being able to make contact in the first place. Most people, when educated on the facts, are very strongly in favour of striking down our Firearms Act. It can easily be shown how these ‘firearms laws’ only affect the law-abiding citizen, not the criminal,” he said.
For more information about Bruce and Donna Montague, or to see what you can do to help the family at the forefront of a battle many Canadians are involved in, visit their website at http://www.brucemontague.ca
DISCLAIMER: BruceMontague.ca is maintained by friends and
supporters of Bruce Montague.
It is NOT an official mouth-piece for Bruce
Montague's legal defense.