No wonder criminal gang activity appears to be on the upswing in Canada, if recent turf wars in Toronto and Vancouver are anything to go by. Public appeals to politicians to tighten the screws on these perps seem to go nowhere because the problem has become monstrous in size to the point of defying a solution. Right now, governments are prepared to pour more money into programs that encourage young people to say no to the gang life. While such educational strategies might be good for down the road, there has to be a more immediate solution that protects communities from getting caught in the crossfire. Here are a couple: make it a serious crime to offer any known gang members protection or sanctuary. The only proof needed here is the fact that they are residing at a fixed address of property they don’t own. Secondly, make it a crime to even belong to a gang that could result in lengthy prison time. As for the illegal possession of a firearm, violators will face a mandatory ten-year sentence followed by a rescission of citizenship and deportation. There is an irony in all this that is hard to miss. Back in 1970, Trudeau Sr. invoked the War Measures Act to curb the remote possibility of arm resurrection in Quebec. Today, we have an infinitely greater threat from organized crime in our cities, but all we do is continue to timidly nibble away at the edges while hoping the problem of urban violence doesn’t get worse.