The purpose of the RCMP officer’s weapon is protection of the officer and the public

While I am not in the habit of sending letters to the editor, I could not in good conscience let Howard Burns letter which was published in the Mirror on Nov. 16 go unchecked.

Mr. Burns states that a member of the RCMP in “attack gear” was cradling an AK47 and this was the most disgusting sight he has ever witnessed in Campbell River. He further claims that children at the service were subjected to a scene from Rambo.

Well, first of all Mr. Burns, I can assure you that no member of the RCMP had cradled an AK47 at the Remembrance Day ceremony or anywhere else for that matter. An AK47 is a Soviet bloc assault rifle that was replaced in 1974. AK47s are not issued to the RCMP, now or ever before. No Mr. Burns, what you saw was a patrol carbine. It is not an Ak47 nor is it an “assault rifle.”

An assault rifle by definition is one that is capable of firing a medium powered cartridge in both semi-automatic mode and full automatic mode (semi-automatic requires a pull of the trigger for each shot, full automatic requires one pull of the trigger for many shots). The RCMP patrol carbine does not fire in full automatic mode.

The purpose of the patrol carbine is protection of the officer and the public. Unfortunate recent events have proven their worth. Think Mayerthorpe, Alberta or Moncton New Brunswick where several members of the RCMP gave up their lives because they didn’t have patrol carbines. The gear the RCMP member was wearing is protective gear, not “attack gear” Mr. Burns.

And while we are on the topic, how does the movie Rambo fit into this? The RCMP member was not waving the rifle around, shooting up the place or doing anything other than carrying it while marching. No, Mr. Burns, it seems to me that you have an agenda for phrasing things the way you have in your letter. If there were indeed children at the ceremony who were troubled by the sight of a police officer with a gun, then I would have thought the responsible thing to do, would be to have a teaching moment with the child, explaining how the police are the public’s representatives, and are there to help and protect them.

Lastly, if you were the person in the crowd yelling about the police having ‘machine guns” during the moment of silence for our veterans I hope you are truly ashamed for your behaviour, but I doubt you will be because that doesn’t fit your agenda either.

D.H. (Dan) Smith

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Greg Janicki (left), owner of Dogwood Pet Mart rasied $410 this year for the Campbell River SPCA’s Loonies for Love fundraiser which he presented to Stephanie Arkwright, branch manager of the BCSPCA – Campbell River Community Animal Centre. Photo contributed
Pandemic doesn’t stop annual Loonies for Love SPCA fundraiser

Fundraising has been a bit challenging over the past year, but the… Continue reading

The intersection at Dogwood Street and 13th Avenue, next to the No. 1 Firehall, will see some improvements over the next six weeks or so, according to the city. Photo by Mike Davies/Campbell River Mirror
Intersection improvements coming to Dogwood and 13th Avenue

Expect delays for up to six weeks once work begins, city says

Oyster River fire has responded to 56 calls so far in 2021. Photo courtesy Oyster River Fire Department
Oyster River Fire averaged one call per day in busy February

One weekend saw 12 calls for service from crew

The students in the Timberline Musical Theatre program are rehearsing this year’s production, Once Upon a Mattress, three days per week after school in preparation for their upcoming virtual performances. Photo by Mike Davies/Campbell River Mirror
Timberline Musical Theatre hoping for last minute ticket surge

Popular annual run of shows costs $7,000-$8,000 to put on. They’ve sold $750 in tickets

NIC Practical Nursing instructor Barb McPherson (right) is pictured with student Rebecca Wood in 2018 in NIC’s SIM lab. NIC photo
Learn about Practical Nursing opportunities for Island students

Students interested in exploring a future in health care are invited to… Continue reading

Health Minister Adrian Dix looks on as Dr. Bonnie Henry pauses for a moment as she gives her daily media briefing regarding COVID-19 for British Columbia in Victoria, B.C. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
7 additional deaths and 542 new COVID-19 cases in B.C.

Provincial health officials reported 18 new COVID-19 cases linked to variants of concern

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Chief Justice Christopher Hinkson (Office of the Chief Justice)
Judge questions whether B.C.’s top doctor appreciated right to religious freedom

Lawyer for province says Dr. Henry has outlined the reasons for her orders publicly

The City of Duncan will implement a new pilot project targeting vandalism this spring. (File photo)
Graffiti trouble? Duncan will give you the brush and the paint to remove it

Initiative based on a successful project to protect Port Alberni from unwanted spray paint

A sample of guns seized at the Pacific Highway border crossing from the U.S. into B.C. in 2014. Guns smuggled from the U.S. are used in criminal activity, often associated with drug gangs. (Canada Border Service Agency)
B.C. moves to seize vehicles transporting illegal firearms

Bill bans sale of imitation or BB guns to young people

BC Housing minister David Eby is concerned that Penticton council’s decision to close a local homeless shelter will result in a “tent city” similar to this one in Everett, Wa. (Olivia Vanni / Black Press file)
‘Disappointed and baffled’ B.C. housing minister warns of tent city in Penticton

Penticton council’s decision to close a local homeless shelter could create tent city, says David Eby

This was the scene outside North Saanich’s Parkland Secondary School after an attempted but unsuccessful break-and-enter into the school torched an ATM inside of it. Sidney/North Saanich RCMP did not make any arrests and currently lack suspects as the investigation continues. Members of the public who may have witnessed something or possess other information can contact police at (250) 656-3931 or to Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS. (Submitted)
Money to burn: burglars torch North Saanich high school ATM

Police dogs searched the exterior and interior of the school after early morning break-and-enter

The first of Fisheries and Oceans Canada’s long-range maritime patrol aircraft—the Dash-8—becomes operational. (Photo supplied by PAL Aerospace)
Fisheries and Oceans Canada’s new De Havilland Dash-8-100 long-range surveillance air craft is capable of staying aloft for eight to 10 hours for a variety of missions up and down the B.C. coast. (Photo supplied by PAL Aerospace)
New plane will double DFO’s surveillance capacity in B.C.

The Dash-8 will fly out of Campbell River for enforcement, conservation missions

A recently published study out of UBC has found a link between life satisfaction levels and overall health. (Pixabay)
Satisfied with life? It’s likely you’re healthier for it: UBC study

UBC psychologists have found those more satisfied with their life have a 26% reduced risk of dying

Most Read