NRA Says UN Arms Treaty Could Force US Gun Owners on International Registry
The NRA is busy these days protecting Second Amendment rights here at home. The gun-rights group is also actively working in opposition to the UN Arms Treaty. The NRA says the treaty, supported by the Obama Administration, would restrict individual ownership and could force Americans onto an international registry.
The Washington Post reported:
The NRA is among the treaty’s most vocal opponents and a founder of the World Forum on Shooting Activities, an international coalition of gun rights activists and gun manufacturers who plan to speak against the treaty.
“What we really object to is the inclusion of civilian firearms within the scope of the ATT,” said Tom Mason, the group’s executive secretary and a lawyer who has represented the NRA at U.N. meetings for nearly two decades. “This is a treaty that really needs to address the transfer of large numbers of military weapons that leads to human rights abuses. We have submitted language that you can define what a civilian firearm is.”
The NRA also argues that the treaty could infringe on gun rights as understood in the United States and could force Americans onto an international registry.
Activists say the NRA wants to gut the treaty. “The NRA claim that there is such a thing as ‘civilian weapons’ and that these can and need to be treated differently from military weapons under the Arms Trade Treaty is — to put it politely — the gun lobby’s creativity on full display,” Ringuette said in a statement. “There is no such distinction. To try to create one would create a loophole that would render the treaty inoperative, as anyone could claim that he or she was in the business of trading ‘civilian weapons.’ ”
Bloomberg has more:
Supporters including U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry say a treaty wouldn’t impinge on the U.S. Constitution’s Second Amendment right to bear arms, the talk of arms regulation has agitated American gun-rights advocates led by the National Rifle Association, which claims more than 4 million members.
“Neither the United Nations, nor any other foreign influence, has the authority to meddle with the freedoms guaranteed by our Bill of Rights,” Wayne LaPierre, chief executive officer of the NRA, said in a July 14 address to the UN’s Arms Trade Treaty Conference.