Fraser Anning Says Aussies Could Be 'Eating Cats And Dogs' If We Don't Relax Gun Laws
Senator Fraser Anning weighed into the controversial One Nation and U.S gun lobby saga, and said he doesn't see anything wrong with donations from gun lobbyists.
Speaking to reporters in regional Queensland, Anning also claimed Australia has more gun crime since the Port Arthur massacre -- despite official figures demonstrating the contrary.
The former Katter's Australian Party Senator also compared Australia and Venezuela's firearm regulations, and made some dire predictions regarding the country's fate should we not relax our gun laws.
"Everyone has the right to defend themselves and their family," he said, speaking to reporters in regional Queensland.
The Senator didn't condemn the actions of the One Nation staffers, who are accused of asking a powerful US gun lobby for $US20 million in funding to help it roll back gun control in Australia.
He said his gripe is with the lack of transparency.
"It's a bit strange. One day they are talking about having stricter gun control, the other day they are over there talking about funding from NRA, so it's a bit hard to work out what position they have," Anning said.
One Nation's Queensland leader Steve Dickson and chief of staff James Ashby made the request in a meeting with National Rifle Association of America officials and other pro-gun groups in the US, an undercover investigation by Al Jazeera claims. Anning claimed he "can't see any problem with it."
The divisive Senator also said he is open to accepting funds from local gun lobbyists.
"All parties need funding so if genuine people are funding then that's fine we need to do an advertising campaign," Anning said.
Anning spoke candidly about his support of looser gun laws.
'Every nation that's disarmed its population eventually oppressed them," he said.
The Senator then referred to Venezeula, where in 2012, under the the direction of then-President Hugo Chavez, enacted laws to with the explicit aim to “disarm all citizens.”
For years the South American country has grappled with poverty, political corruptness and is home to the second highest crime rate in the world and the situation continues to deteriorate.
This did not stop Anning from drawing on Venezuela's experience as a warning to Australians.
By 2016 they are eating cats and dogs and in 2019 they are being shot by their own government for trying to access the food that Donald Trump sent them.
When challenged about the fact that there have been no massacres in Australia since Martin Byrant took 35 lives in Port Arthur in mass shooting in 1996 -- Anning refuted the numbers.
"That's not really right, they have changed the criteria and there has been more gun crime then there ever was," he said.
Under John Howard, the government overhauled its gun laws after the Port Arthur massacre -- banning semi-automatic and self-loading weapons, and introducing tougher requirements on purchasing guns. Firearms must also be registered, and owners must have a licence.
The number of Australia's mass shootings dropped from 11 in the decade before 1996, to two in the years since . They were both domestic violence crimes -- one involved the murder-suicide of a family of five in New South Wales in 2014, and the murder-suicide of a family of seven in Western Australia last year.
Despite these well-documented trends, Anning continued with his rhetoric.
"Every day in Sydney and Melbourne there is a shooting," he claimed.
Figures from the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics show that all firearm crime decreased across the state between January 2013 to December 2018.
The latest statistics from the Crime Statistics Agency Victoria show that firearms offences have remained stable for the past three years.
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