Toronto the bad

News from my home town although it does seem ever more remote from the place where I grew up. But this is beyond incompetence:

Detectives in Canada are still seeking a motive for a mass shooting which left three dead – including the gunman – and injured more than a dozen others, as residents of Toronto grapple with the latest in a string of violent incidents to hit Canada’s biggest city in recent months.

Federal officials said on Tuesday that there was no terror link to Sunday’s attack in which the lone gunman opened fire along a bustling avenue in the city, seemingly shooting at random at pedestrians and into shops and restaurants.

Nor is this just out of nowhere. Toronto has had a few of these of late:

Toronto has been rattled by a string of violent incidents this year.

In April, 10 people were killed and more than a dozen injured when a driver in a van ploughed into pedestrians on a city sidewalk. The following month, more than a dozen people were injured after a homemade bomb ripped through an Indian restaurant in May in nearby Mississauga.

The year started with the arrest of alleged serial killer Bruce McArthur, now charged with the deaths of eight men, and the high-profile homicides of billionaires Barry and Honey Sherman.

Gun violence has also tightened its grip on the city. Last month two sisters, ages five and nine, were shot while playing in a park. The two young girls survived, partly thanks to neighbours who used napkins to stem the bleeding. At the start of this month, two men were fatally gunned down in a brazen daytime shooting in the city’s downtown core.

So far this year 26 people have died from gun violence, a 59% increase from the same period last year. The number of shootings has risen 13%, according to police data.

“People now – whether you’re walking on Queen Street, walking on the Danforth, walking on Yonge Street – are going to be looking over their shoulder,” said Louis March, the founder of the Zero Gun Violence Movement in Toronto.

How about a zero robbery movement, or a zero double-parking movement. No one wants to identify the problem, and so neither will I. Here’s the mayor:

On Tuesday, Toronto city council, led by Toronto mayor John Tory, began debating a range of measures aimed at tackling gun violence in the city….

Measures being considered by the city include bolstering mentoring programs, the purchase of 40 new CCTV cameras and a contentious listening technology that claims to be able to detect and report the sound of gunshots to police.

“I’ve said for some time that the city has a gun problem, in that guns are far too readily available to far too many people,” Tory said on Monday.

It’s not too many guns but too many people who want to shoot other people that is the problem.

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