Well, where do I start? As anyone who has read this blog knows, I am physically not very strong, and I recently (yeah right, back in late February!) put in a Category C application to QPS Weapons Licensing Branch to be able to acquire a Category C licence which would allow me to purchase a suitable shotgun for clay target shooting – ie: a pump action semi-automatic shotgun or similar. The application process requires that submitters also provide evidence from their medical practitioners stating their ‘genuine’ for requiring a Category C shotgun, as this type of firearm is not in general circulation in the shooting community. The legislation explicitly stipulates that a person who is NOT a Category C licensed shooter, is not even allowed to be in possession of a Cat C shotgun – which means, even with my Cat A/B and H licenses, I am not legally allowed to even borrow a Cat C shotgun to even see if acquiring one is going to suit my purposes! So many restrictions… le sigh.
Anyway, I had a young woman named Ms Ashleigh Ditzforbrains from Weapons Licensing call me and tell me that my application was received and that ‘everything was in order, you just need to provide your Firearms Safety Course Section Category C and it should be processed – no problems’. OK. So I traipse off to get a Cat C Safety Course certification (same damn safety course I did for my A/B license, and my H license and sat through again not so long ago with the Small Child so he could get his A/B Minors license… with some minor variations for Cat C)… some $200 later which I forward to be added to my application and happily go off overseas to the US for five weeks in early March, anticipating that my license would be processed in due course – which everyone knows with WLB is like, fucking forever because their processing times and wait times are notorious screwed up.
Get back from the US, wait some months still and then get a letter stipulating that my medical evidence was insufficient to demonstrate that I lacked the ‘strength and dexterity’ to be eligible for a Category C license! Are you fucking kidding me!? That Ms Ashleigh IneptitudeIsUs woman told me everything was in order and sent me off to do an expensive safety course to complete the application?!? So why was my application being rejected? Naturally, I contact WLB and ask them WTF? I get told by a Team Leader this time, Ms Morag SomeoneOrOther, that my medical evidence did not state the words ‘strength and dexterity’ so it was deemed insufficient and that I was able to gain more medical advice and avail myself of the QCAT appeal system within 28 days of determination if I wished to appeal the decision, but that there was nothing they could do with the case, once the decision was finalised on their end – which is complete and utter bullshit btw… I’ve worked in Govt and know enough about public service processes to know that cases can be reopened or renumbered to allow for further processing but OK, if they want me to engage in a spurious administrative appeal, then that is what I would do. I was also given assurances by Ms Morag Whatserdoover that with additional medical information she felt there would be no problem having the decision reversed. (Oh, and the decision was made on 11th August, but delivered to me by registered mail on 19th August so I had a truncated timetable to get an appeal lodged – thanks arseholes!)
So I went back to the quack, got another letter that stated the exact nature of my physical condition and limitations and ensured it was correctly worded, saying I lacked the ‘strength and dexterity’ to operate traditional break action shotguns and went to lodge a QCAT appeal – at which point I discovered it was going to cost $295.00 just to lodge an appeal!!! OMFG. Naturally, one would want to avoid this type of ridiculous lodgement fee, so I contacted Weapons Licensing, yet again, and sent them my new and improved medical evidence (containing the correct wording), and spoke with Morag Thingamebob again and basically went ‘WTF? Why do I have to go through this expensive process when you have 1) assured me that the problem lay primarily with the wording of my medical evidence and 2) you’ve told me the decision would be reversed, no problem! It should be difficult to obtain a Category C license, but it should not be this administratively fucking hard!
It was at this time that Ms Morag Bitchface (nee Dooverlackey) decided to change tack – she sent me an email saying that based on the new evidence I had supplied, she and her Authorizing Officer, Snr Sgt Tom Cavanagh, felt that if I pursued my line of enquiry, that it may be deemed that I was not a ‘fit and proper person’ under section 19 of the Weapons Licensing Act to possess Category A/B licenses and I may be called upon to show cause as to why I should be allowed to keep my current licenses.
FUCK OFF YOU INEPT CUNTS! I don’t wan’t to spend $295.00 on a pointless administrative appeal and respectfully request that my case be reopened or alternatively I be allowed to reapply with the new information and that is what I get? A THREAT to take away my current license? THAT’S IT! Within moments, I have decided that I am GOING TO FUCK YOU BASTARDS WITH A MOTHERFUCKING RAKE!
Unfortunately for Morag Cuntrag (nee Bitchface), this exchange happened on a Friday afternoon, so that basically left me free to spent most of my Sunday writing a letter of complaint against Ms Ashleigh DitzForBrains, Ms Morag Cuntrag and Snr Sgt Tom Cavanagh and send it to – The Honourable Jack Dempsey, Minister for Police, Mr Ian Stewart, Commissioner for Police, The Chief Operating Officer of Weapons Licensing Branch, and the Manger, Weapons Licensing Branch, and and for good measure – the Anti-Discrimination Officer of Queensland. And a five page diatribe outlining this six months of unnecessary administrative bullshit was in all their in-boxes by first thing 15th September, ready to make their Monday mornings as delightful as possible.
And then the weirdest thing happened… deathly silence. Now, any of you who have ever written strongly worded letters to government officials that explain instances of gross ineptitude, break downs in administrative process, threats against an individual of the public (presumably the consumer in this situation) and intimidation and/or spurious threats by a member of QPS including a Senior Sergeant who should bloody well know better, knows… ordinarily know these things get jumped on immediately and someone way on up in the food chain usually calls within 24 hours or less. But that didn’t happen. Deathly silence ensued… Weird.
It was not until the following Friday that I had a phone call from the Operations Manager of Weapons Licensing, while I was in the car coming back from the Gold Coast. Mr K was thankfully driving at the time and could tell within moments that the call was not going to go so well for the guy on the other end of the phone. The long and the short of that call was that Mr Operations Manager was extremely apologetic that I felt that my current licenses were being threatened but that it was the obligation of the Authorizing Officer under Section 19 of the Weapons Act 1990 to ensure that holders of A/B licenses were fit and proper persons to hold said licenses – to which I replied, that yes, I understood this obligation and duty of care of the authorizing officers, however “under Section 19(2) of that same Act, the Authorizing Officer has the capacity, authorization and ability to request further information pertaining to any Category C application, and that Snr Sgt Tom Cavanagh chose at the time of processing the original application NOT to request further supporting evidence, but instead dismissed the application and thereby turned the matter into an extraneous and spurious appeal for the attention of the expensive QCAT system costing the myself and the tax payer unnecessary time and expense”, or words to that effect. At which point Mr Operations Manager back peddled a little bit with backing up the authorizing officer and decided to inform me that I was obviously a fit and proper person in his opinion, and that my A/B licenses were not under threat and he had decided I could reapply with an entirely new Cat C application with the new medical evidence – strangely enough, exactly what I had respectfully requested in the first place… a suggestion that was summarily dismissed and a threat to take away my current licenses issued by the power tripping arseholes of Ms Cuntrag and Snr Sgt Cavanagh! Grrr…! What I had requested was NOT impossible and obviously not even unreasonable! Fucking retards working at WLB.
So that was some time in late August by now… the new application was lodged on September 4th. And NOW for the fun bit. 🙂 Oh yes, the drama continues…! On Monday this week being the 27th of October, I get a call from the original Ms Ashleigh DitzForBrains letting me know that my application can’t be processed as I have not supplied the $8.00 Change of Conditions fee that should have accompanied (both) the original applications. Me (deadpan): “You’re kidding, right? I lodged this application twice at Morningside, and Carina Police Stations, and on both occasions, none of the receiving officers requested any lodgement fee.”
No, apparently she was not. And then Dizty Ashleigh asks me what type of shotgun I am planning on acquiring upon gaining this license? I told her, “I have no idea. In accordance with the legislation I have not been in possession of, or even borrowed any Category C shotguns, and as such have not yet made that determination.” She then informs me that with this license I am only able to purchase a “break action shotgun that takes no more than 2 rounds at a time”. NO SHIT, she actually said that. I took a deep breather and told her, very calmly, that she has just described a traditional shotgun which is able to be purchased by any A/B licensee in the entire state of Queensland, and that a Category C shotgun is one which is a semi-automatic shotgun, either pump action or other action operated, and may hold a capacity of up to five rounds in accordance with the legislation… and she insists that you can only get a break action shotgun that takes two rounds with a Category C license! (You know – I looked this stupid woman up when I was writing my ministerial and I know that I am dealing with an absolutely bottom feeding administrative droogey – she’s an A02 glorified reception with the title of WLB Processing Officer – but she should know the very basic differences of weapons types in accordance with the Act that dictates every single action relating to her entire job! But she obviously has no idea what the fuck she is doing). Eventually she asks me to hold while she ‘checks with Someone Else’, to which I respond, ‘Please do.’ :/
In due course ‘Someone Else’ gets on the phone and tells me that I am indeed correct, but that the $8.00 fee does need to be paid. I acquiesce graciously to his ridiculously overdue but seemingly reasonable request for a modest processing fee, and helpfully suggest that they consider updating their website to reflect this requirement, especially seeing that neither the Morningside nor Carina Police Stations, where the original applications were lodged, knew anything about any processing fee for a Change of Conditions application…!
Anyway, I have now paid the $8.00 fee and scanned and emailed the receipt off to WLB marked attention to ‘Someone Else’, the nice guy who seemed to know some shit from Shinola, and now… we wait. AGAIN!!!
This is how I imagine Ms DiztForBrains gets on at work…