AHP #151 – Guns In Australia With Mark Latham

 Mark Latham has had a long career in politics and political commentary which has spanned over 30 years. Mark was the former federal leader of the Labor Party that lost the election to John Howard in 2004. Mark formed the outsiders after being let go by Sky News for certain remarks that free speech opponents didn’t like. He has become a political commentator and a proponent of free speech in Australia and believes the Labor party are only about identity politics.

Mark Latham shares his opinions on:

  • Free speech and the nanny state
  • His thoughts on the Labor Party in 2017
  • Joining The Rebel Media
  • Mark Lathams Outsiders
  • Firearms registration
  • US school shootings
  • Why status quo gun laws should remain
  • Why he thinks there is no appetite to change gun laws in Australia

There’s more, but we’ll let you discover it as you listen to this new episode of the Australian Hunting Podcast.

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Member Hugh McDermott, The New Poster Boy For Gun Control

Hugh McDermottIt truly is a shame when a newly elected politician takes aim at law abiding firearms owners who by definition are the most fit and proper people in the community.

Hugh McDermott, the newly elected Labor Member for prospect(my current town) has decided to take a swipe at gun owners in an uneducated opinion piece in the Guardian. The Member has also taken aim at Liberal Democrat Senator, David Leyonhjelm.

The Member states that “people like Senator David Leyonhjelm are using the tragedy of the Paris attacks to further their pro-gun agenda, twisting facts to create a narrative that is misleading and dangerous.” The Question I ask the Member is, “what facts are being twisted?”

In 2014/15 there was a Senate Inquiry into the banning of semi automatic hand guns conducted by the federal government. The inquiry was set up to look at the illicit use of firearms and where the source of gun crime is coming from. The Institute of Criminology’s own figures state that only 6 handguns were stolen from Law abiding firearms owners out of a total of 48,000. In reasonable terms thats not even a blip on the radar.

The Institute of Criminology even admitted during the inquiry that they did ZERO data analysis on illicit importations of firearms because of “funding” issues. We already know that the inquiry was setup by the Greens Senator Penny Wright to demonise law abiding firearms owners and blame them for illicit gun crime. They failed.

The Victorian Police also testified that a major source off illegal firearms are being imported into the country illegally. A few years ago, 220 Glock handguns were illegally imported  into Australia through an Australian Post Office in Sydney. Recently a man was found with a Thompson sub machine gun which was never legally allowed to be sold in Australia. These are only a few of the illegal firearms being picked up by Police on Australian streets. No doubt there are many more guns being imported into Australia that are passing through customs undetected.


The report into the banning of semi automatic handguns found:

1.157:  Despite the acknowledged deficiencies in the data available, the Chair of the inquiry has unfortunately made comments in the media about the size of the illegal gun market and its impact on crime in the community. Many of the claims made were not substantiated by the evidence to the inquiry, particularly regarding the source of illegal guns and legal gun owners in Australia.

1.158:  Claims made in the media by the Chair, which The majority of Senators attending the inquiry believe are not substantiated by the evidence, include:

-most illegal guns are not trafficked into Australia, but stolen from registered owners;

– many illicit firearms are actually stolen from legitimate sources or taken from the grey market, including the gun used in the Sydney siege.

The hypothesis that illegal guns are mainly stolen from registered gun owners was not supported by the evidence presented to the Committee.


In reading the data from the inquiry one can only come to the conclusion that Member McDermott is either uneducated on firearms issues, and should cease his commentary, or he is his downright dishonest.

The Member states “These people peddle untruths to suit their agenda. They claim that gun crimes went up after the Howard government buy back. They didn’t. The statistics are unequivocal. There were 17 mass shootings before the gun reform and only one since. And homicide from guns fell 59% over the decade that followed”. The Member is again, way off target.

If the Member had done his homework, he would have known that violent crime with a firearm was dropping long before the 1996 Howard gun reforms. The Member says we have only had 1 mass shooting since 1996. In the case of the Lochart domestic shooting in rural NSW, it made no difference weather the firearm was registered or illegal. The gross act was still committed. No law or registration of a firearm changed that fact.

I find it fascinating that New Zealand has not had a single mass shooting since 1997(Rariumu Massacre), they still have access to AR-15 style semi automatic rifles, semi automatic shotguns, and pump action shotguns. It is clear from New Zealand, to Canada, to Switzerland, that the action of a firearm has no bearing on weather a person is likely to commit a mass shooting. New Zealand has one of the highest gun ownership rates across the western world. Guess what? No mass shootings in the last 20 years. The gun control advocates never mention New Zealand because it doesn’t suit their fear mongering agenda.

While you might think The Member is green in his newly elected position, he makes the biggest statement that “In fact, there are more guns on the black market that have been stolen than imported’. Unfortunately for the Member, the inquiry findings again do not support that view. The Member for Police in NSW Troy Grant clearly states that illegally imported guns are the biggest problem police face, not the guns you buy over the counter at a gun shop.

The Member goes on to state that a “military level security” central storage point for all guns that need to be checked in and out would keep people safe. I wonder how many criminals with all those illegally imported firearms will make use of this military grade security storage point? You got it, None!

Member McDermott like myself, has served in the Australian Defence Force. There is nothing that annoys me more than a current or previous servicemen telling me that “You don’t need guns” and that they, of course, should be allowed to have them, but not you. I served my country, I have the right to say that anyone without a criminal record has the right to gun ownership in Australia. They have a right to defend their families and loved ones. Member McDermott should be the first person supporting our right to legal gun ownership.

The Member then contradicts himself by saying, “Of the 135 people killed in 16 mass shootings in Australia and New Zealand between 1987 and 2014, most were shot by previously law-abiding, licensed gun owners using legally held firearms. They had no history of mental illness or criminal activity“. Later in the article Member gun grabber states “I have no problem with people who are well trained and with no history of mental illness or a criminal record owning firearms for sport or work-related activities.”

So let me get this straight? The Member says that law abiding firearms owners are the ones committing mass shootings who had no criminal record or no history of mental illness. He then states he has no problem with people with no criminal record or mental illness owning firearms.  The lunacy of the Members statement is unmatched.

The number of people who died in the French massacre total 128, the final numbers are yet to be confirmed. France has significant gun control measures in place to make the “community safer”. This did not stop the Charlie Hebdo attacks, or the Paris Massacre. Can it really get much worse before politicians realise that gun control of the law abiding is not the answer? By that time, it will be well and truly to late.