VANCOUVER, British Columbia

Armed officers on trains

Canada’s first armed transit police, the Greater Vancouver Transit Authority Police, have taken to the rails, making some passengers and civil libertarians uneasy in a country that generally frowns on firearms.

John Les, solicitor general of British Columbia, said the public was demanding greater security on the region’s transit system and commuter lines, which have been plagued with crime, particularly drug dealing in and around stations.

The 70 new officers, who began work Sunday, have full police powers and the authority to enforce drug laws, execute warrants and arrest people committing crimes outside stations. Previously, they could only hold people as they waited for officers from other forces to arrive.

The police are carrying semiautomatic pistols that hold 17 rounds. (AP)

17 Fucking Rounds?!?!?

According to The Globe and Mail:

Each officer is equipped with a .40-calibre Glock C22 semi-automatic pistol, an Austrian-designed weapon that can carry up to 17 rounds

I picked up the International Herald Tribune this morning. It’s basically the New York Times Europe Edition. Just to see what’s going on. To add further evidence that the world gone nuts includes my hometown of Vancouver Canada I got to read a little newslet capsule on the backpage. Visible above. It caught my eye of course because it was about the newsworthy event in Vancity that managed to make the Times and EuroTribune. It was about the rollout of the Skytrain Police Force., Canada’s first such law and Order Force. I wrestled with that, not being opposed to it in principle, because safety is a good thing. It was the last line of the article that shook me “They will be armed with semi automatic pistols with 17 rounds of ammunition.” What in the name of Goodness and Safety and Public Fucking Order requires the neophyte police force, destined to work in Public areas (Public Transit) to get semiautomatic pistols filled with 17 fucking bullets? I mean, yes, ok to Transit police, let’s keep our city safe, but really do you think after squeezing out 16 bullets in a crowded Skytrain Station to stop a drug deal or fare evader, there’s going to be need for another bullet?

I don’t know much about firearms or budgeting, but this seems like we’re off on the wrong foot already. The concern I had, that arming this security force with guns seemed like a push in the wrong direction has not been assuaged by the decision to get semiautomatic handheld weapons with 17 bullets. I mean, what scenarios are they expecting? What could possibly justify this? I moved from Vancouver just 7 months ago. I lived near Commercial drive Skytrain station, and yes there was shady activity, but I have trouble believing it has degenerated into some sort of dystopia since I left. Fuck me! Really fucking unbelievable! The kind of people that want guns with 17 bullets, are precisely the people you don’t want to have authority or be responsible for safety; yet they now have those bad ass weapons and are responsible for public safety in Vancouver’s busy Skytrain stations. The countdown to a tragedy caused by an overzealous weapon mongerer on the right side of the law begins now….