Is Kevin Rudd good for shooters?

The Shooters Journal in 2001 (Vol 3, Issue 6, Special Election Issue) carried the following profile of new Labor leader Kevin Rudd.

SSAA members, particularly those in Queensland, will be aware that the Belmont range in suburban Brisbane is one of the biggest and most diverse in the country. The range hosts facilities for more than ten shooting organisations. It is also slap bang in the middle of Kevin Rudd’s federal electorate of Griffith.

Kevin makes no apologies for being a long-standing supporter of shooters’ rights. He has participated in a number of celebrity events at the Belmont range throughout the years, along with former South Australian ALP Senator John Quirk, who serves as a patron for a number of shooting organisations.

Kevin also officially opened the 2000 International Metallic Silhouette Shooting Championships hosted by SSAA in Brisbane, which attracted some 190 participants from 16 countries around the world. He is also a patron of the Australian Shooting Games held at Belmont and is a regular presenter of awards at the ‘Queens Prize’ – one of the premier shooting competitions in Queensland.

Apart from all that, every now and then Kevin finds the time to improve his clay target skills. Asked about his prowess with a shotgun, Kevin simply replies, “I’ve got a very, very, very long way to go. Michael Diamond can rest easy for quite a while yet.”

Rudd’s predecessor, Kim Beazley, was known to have a soft spot for shooters as well. He was heard once to have said he felt distinctly uncomfortable about what was done to them in 1996.

Is it possible that the election of a Labor government might end the torment of shooters by the federal government?


15 Responses to Is Kevin Rudd good for shooters?

  1. fishfinger says:

    Why do you think Howard was able to introduce anti-gun laws so quickly after Port Arthur? He simply stole them from Labor.
    Both major parties believe there is major electoral advantage to them to be so gung ho in regard to banning guns.

  2. True Blue says:

    Not true. Howard’s policies came from the Coalition for Gun Control. He also asked the Country Womens Association (true!!)

  3. Willy says:

    regardles of rudds personal veiws,he has to convince the media, and the screeching masses in urbantopia,and the state politicritters that lessening the persecution of lafo’s would be a good thing.I dont think he is capable of this.and I dont beleive he would see it as an important enough issue to threaten the states with financial penalties like howard did.

  4. David Leyonhjelm says:

    Good point Willy.

    The only thing is, a lot of the pressure for even more gun control is continuing to come out of Canberra. It has not stopped.

    If Rudd wins, maybe they’ll quit doing that and go back to leaving it to the states. The other main hope is that Howard will quit after he wins and the rest of the government will lose interest.

  5. fishfinger says:

    You might be right True Blue. One thing I’m aware of is that it takes months and months at least to draft any Act. So while his policies might be courtesy of the CGC the Act would have had to be already drafted for him to be able to introduce it into Parliament as quickly as he did.

  6. True Blue says:

    Howard never changed the law. He just forced the states to change their laws, and it did take months and months. What he forced the states to agree to came from the Coalition for Gun Control.

  7. Josh says:

    At the end of the day there is little chance that there will be re-instatement of semi’s and pump’s. I agree with DL in that the best chance we have is if State government’s are allowed to regulate their own legislation without penbalty. In such a case, the shooting fraternity have a much more powerful sway than in the federal legislature. A best case scenario would include removal of the .38 caliber handgun laws in NSW and an increase in chances for semi’s to be allowed in international comp for rifle. Unfortuately this is all unlikely. There may be a better chance that gun laws will not get any worse. Some concellation.

  8. pete2whelan says:

    If we shooters are going to push, it must be for complete lifting on all Howard’s bans, on the basis that prohibition only feeds the black market. If we make a combined push for all semis and pumps, plus .45s, then let’s see what Rudd/Labor counter with. How badly does Labor want an extra one million votes?

  9. Josh says:


    I was not suggesting what we should request, just stating what we are more than likely to get. You are absolutely right about demanding everything and seeing what the counter is, but at the end of the day, Labor or any other government will only give what the majority of voters will accept. If they just reversed all of the legislation, there would be more votes from gun owners but they would lose twice as many to other anti-gun parties. It will take a long time to educate the Australian people of the facts in order to minimise the backlash that would be created.

    In the mean time if, as I, you wish to shoot those type of firearms, move to the US. In my club, there are three shooters in the process of applying for visas to move to the US. Considering the circumstances, I might join them.

  10. Davyd says:

    I am with Josh – the scenario is for maintenance of curent gun laws – maybe over time trimming off some of the more illogical features at the fringes.

    It was very intersting to read Keegans “History of War” – based at the English Royal Military college (from memmory) and regarded as one of the foremost academic’s in the area. A clear theme is from the 16th centurey is the disarmament of the civil poulation – with public support. This tracks the rise of effective policing and professional armies – so the concept of citizen soldiers and needing to defend the home at a moments notice has become less relevant to the bulk of the population. (To me too to be frank)

    However what is dysfunctional is that in the last few decades that urban populations have become divorced from shooting, and the realities of the rural envionment (they eat meat but despise the butcher), this combined with Hollywoods (mis)representation of guns which only associates it with death and injustice means that the pressure on sporting and rural shooters has become extreme and dysfunctional – and may continue.

    Hence my view is that good outcome are politicians who are rational enough to understand the realities (and probably votes in balance) to avoid any major stupidities going forward, despite minority lobby groups and maybe fix a few idiotic quirks up.

    I have also seen a few politicians of all persuasions speak. I saw Rudd speak in Melbourne about why particiapating in a war with Iraq was unnecessary and would decrease securtiy for Australia – before the war started. It was a brilliant speech one of the best I have seen – not only wonderfully constructed conceptual, strategic, tactical examples but great content that changed my views – and history has proved him correct in the areas he talked about.

    Lets hope he brings such rational approaches to this area – and from what has been said here that is hopeful.

  11. Paul Carew says:

    El-Ninyo Says, “Sorry guys, fishfingers was right. I have a copy of either the draft drawn up by Labor’s Duncan Kerr from Tasmania assisted by I think it was Darryl Smeaton a founding member of Rebecca Peters Mob or the same draft which had the subheadings, ” Proposal”, ruled out and the word , “Reslolution” handwritten in its place at the Australasian Police Ministers meeting on May 10-1996. I have one of these drafts but forget which one as it is packed away ready to move house. Dr Bryant Walpole the Hobart surgeon who kept in front of the TV in his surgical gown and a crew of nurses beside him said over & over at the time, ” I am stilll pulliing pellets out of the Victims” Later in the year on the ABC Australian Story he admitted he was a founding member of the Anti Gun Colation and that it was he who persuaded John Howard to also ban pump action shotguns because quote, Bryant was using one of those too.” Readers may remember the ban on pump shotties came quite a bit later now you know why. A word to this blog builder. Would you mind making the font a couple of points larger, my 68 year old eyes are strained enough as it with all that shooting and I am no doubt like many others having trouble reading the commentry. Stay safe keep your firearms secure, ( dont call them weapons) and enjoy your sport while you still can.

  12. Aubrey Sonnenberg says:

    Hard to see how a bloke who’d drop Iraq in the dwang could be any good for us as shooters in Aus. He’s a typical spineless left wing politician, basically a scumbag like the rest of them.

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