The news can sometimes be ridiculously interesting. Take for example, the CBC News article “Canadian homicide rate drops 10 per cent,” published last week. It reports there were 605 homicides in 2006, 58 fewer than 2005. In a population of 30 million, there were 605 homicides. Roughly 0.00002%. Of course no homicides would be even better, but this isn’t the picture the politicians are painting with their claims that Canada has ‘lost its innocence’ because of the significant increase in gun violence. The reason being there has been no recent increase in gun homicides, much less a significant increase.

According to Statistics Canada, 190 of those homicides involved guns, which is down from 223 in 2005. Compare the 190 gun homicides with the 210 people stabbed to death. Did I miss Toronto Mayor David Miller’s desperate calls for a knife ban?

Just to compare, there were 10,100 homicides committed using guns in the United States during 2005. The United States has roughly 10 times the population of Canada, but the homicides committed using guns is five times greater in the US, after taking the population difference into account. So tell me, why should I take seriously the politicians’ claims that gun crime is becoming a Canadian problem on the same scale as in the United States?

A more likely cause is the politicians taking political advantage of a few high-profile killings.