While Mayor John Tory has spent the last few months trying to bring a gun ban to Toronto, a sports store in the city has been doing the exact opposite. They aren't actively against John Tory, but they are currently ramping up gun sales amid his call for a ban.
Nick's Sports Shop, located near the Eaton Centre on Yonge Street, has decided to boost their gun sales in an attempt to make more money, despite Tory's attempts to get rid of gun sales altogether in Toronto.
Paul Margetta, the manager of the store, told the Gun Blog that they would start selling Glock and Beretta handguns from a secure area in their shop but another worker at Nick's confirmed to Narcity that they are already selling handguns and have been doing so since 1958.
In fact, according to their website, the store already carries 10 different handguns ranging in price from $620 - $930. They also have 16 different long guns though the prices aren't listed for those. This suggests that this latest boost in gun sales is more of a ramp-up rather than a new launch.
As for boosting sales and going against John Tory and his proposed gun bans, Nick's told Narcity that they aren't doing anything to oppose the city, but did say that the industry is losing money lately because of the illegal gun problem.
They also called out former Toronto Mayor David Miller who officially shut down gun clubs and shooting ranges in Toronto back in 2008. They also referred to former Toronto Police Chief and now federal Minister Bill Blair, who has been holding consultations on gun control in Canada, specifically in the city.
Nick's said that not controlling the illegal gun market is dangerous but it's also hurting their legal gun industry and sales have dropped across the legal firearms. market because of it though they didn't elaborate on why this might be.
Since there is no current ban in place, Nick's is perfectly within their right to sell firearms in Canada. Nick's also confirmed that they are very diligent about checking permits and making sure everyone they sell to is properly licensed to use a firearm.
No matter how legal these sales are right now, though, John Tory is still trying to put an end to them. Just in November, he made his feelings very clear by urging Torontonians to respond to a federal survey about a potential national handgun ban. He even campaigned on the promise to get rid of handguns in Toronto.
In the lead up to Toronto's municipal election this past October, Tory said he would be willing to look at banning handgun sales in the city. This came after he learned from Toronto police that about half of the guns used in crime in the city were acquired domestically.
According to the mayor, Toronto Police informed him that licensed firearm owners were registering, getting paperwork, buying guns and then selling them illegally for a large profit. That means even though it's not their intention, stores like Nick's that sell handguns could still inadvertently be feeding the illegal market.
None the less, there's a large number of sports shooters in the city and even in Canada who use their guns completely legally, store them properly, and would never even dream of using them for anything illegal or dangerous.
John Tory had a message for them during his campaign too, though. The mayor told the Toronto Sun back in August what he thinks about a gun ban affecting perfectly legal sports shooters. He said "many laws impact on the lives and activities of perfectly law-abiding citizens but we have to pass the law in the greater public interest."
With their major ramp-up of gun sales, Nick's Sports Shop joins Al Flaherty's in the legal gun market in Toronto. The store also sells other hunting and sports goods and accessories. They also operate as an army surplus store.