“Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition!”

by Yule Heibel on February 10, 2006

We average Canadians might bravely sing that “we stand on guard for thee,” O Canada, but it seems our (unarmed) border guards have contractual leave to flee for thee in case of approaching Americans:

SURREY, B.C. (CP) — Officers at the busy Peace Arch and Pacific Highway Canada-U.S. border crossings south of Vancouver walked off the job Friday over reports of an armed U.S. fugitive headed their way.
Paula Shore said the unarmed officers exercised their contractual right to refuse to work after their U.S. colleagues issued a warning to be on the lookout for an armed and dangerous person.

Under the border agents’ collective agreement, they have the right to walk away if they believe their safety was jeopardized.
It’s the third incident in a month when a Canadian border point closed as unarmed officers fled over the threat of armed Americans approaching. [emph.added]
Those incidents renewed demands from the officers’ union that they be given guns.

New Conservative Justice Minister Vic Toews said the party will stand behind its promise to give them guns.

The current policy calls for the unarmed border guards to allow anyone suspected of being armed and dangerous into Canada and then call police. [The Toronto Star, Feb.10/06 (register to view)]

See also the Seattle Post Intelligencer.

I’m no fan of guns, and Canada doesn’t need a Swiss- or US-style Second Amendment or anything, but aren’t these people our border guards? What might be their chief weapons against unwelcome intruders?

NOBODY expects the Spanish Inquisition! Our chief weapon is surprise…surprise and fear…fear and surprise…. Our two weapons are fear and surprise…and ruthless efficiency…. Our *three* weapons are fear, surprise, and ruthless efficiency…and an almost fanatical devotion to the Pope…. Our *four*…no… *Amongst* our weapons…. Amongst our weaponry…are such elements as fear, surprise…. I’ll come in again.

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