The Globe & Mail’s Adrian Morrow interviewed me about the issue of gun violence in Toronto for this piece, “New attitude dismisses code of the street-gang world.” He quotes me on the role of police and a subject that was a focus in our book Enter the Babylon System–the impact of the gun industry. It’s hard to fit the many facets of the “gun” problem into newspaper articles, but Mr. Morrow does a good job canvassing some of the issue’s key components.
The Star’s Antonia Zerbisias found a way to reintroduce hip-hop into the dialogue surrounding gun violence in the streets of Toronto. Concentrating on the French cognac brand Hennessy and tracing its history, Zerbisias Googles up a bunch of rap quotes, projecting hip-hop lyrics back into the gun violence mix. It makes for a sensational story, but sheds little light on the issues.
Criminal defence lawyer Jeffrey Mazin struck a blow for Charter rights this month, after he successfully argued to strike down the mandatory minimum sentence for offering to transfer a firearm contained in s. 99 of the Criminal Code. Mazin told the National Post, “This ruling demonstrates that not all offences involving firearms, real or imagined, should carry the same penalty… In this case, it was found that Mr. Lewis had neither the inclination nor the wherewithal to go through with the sale. It’s a victory for Charter rights in this country.” Justice Bellefontaine’s decision in R. v. Lewis is available on CanLii here.
My friend and editor at Lawyers Weekly, Shannon Kari, asked me to write an opinion piece on the Eaton Centre shooting, in light of my experience writing our book on gun culture and violence. I tried to deal with the more complex class aspects of the issue that get lost between sound bites.