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NRA Speech to United Nations

Discussion in 'Politics, Elections & Legislation' started by RobertT, Jul 16, 2011.

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  1. RobertT

    RobertT Well-Known Member

    Jun 27, 2006
    This is serious business, consider sending a copy of this to your State representatives with a letter stating your opposition to the Arms Trade Treaty.

    United Nations Arms Trade Treaty
    Preparatory Committee - 3d Session
    New York, July 11-15, 2011

    Statement of the National Rifle Association of America

    Mr. Chairman, thank you for this brief opportunity to address the committee. I am Wayne
    LaPierre and for 20 years now, I have served as Executive Vice President of the National Rifle
    Association of America .

    The NRA was founded in 1871, and ever since has staunchly defended the rights of its 4 million
    members, America 's 80 million law-abiding gun owners, and freedom-loving Americans
    throughout our country. In 1996, the NRA was recognized as an NGO of the United Nations
    and, ever since then, has defended the constitutional freedom of Americans in this arena. The
    NRA is the largest and most active firearms rights organization in the world and, although some
    members of this committee may not like what I have to say, I am proud to defend the tens of
    millions of lawful people NRA represents.

    This present effort for an Arms Trade Treaty, or ATT, is now in its fifth year. We have closely
    monitored this process with increasing concern. We've reviewed the statements of the countries
    participating in these meetings. We've listened to other NGOs and read their numerous
    proposals and reports, as well as carefully examined the papers you have produced.
    We've watched, and read ... listened and monitored. Now, we must speak out.

    The Right to Keep and Bear Arms in defense of self, family and country is ultimately self-evident
    and is part of the Bill of Rights to the United States Constitution. Reduced to its core, it
    is about fundamental individual freedom, human worth, and self-destiny.

    We reject the notion that American gun owners must accept any lesser amount of freedom in
    order to be accepted among the international community. Our Founding Fathers long ago
    rejected that notion and forged our great nation on the principle of freedom for the individual
    citizen - not for the government.

    Mr. Chairman, those working on this treaty have asked us to trust them ... but they've proven to
    be unworthy of that trust.

    We are told "Trust us; an ATT will not ban possession of any civilian firearms." Yet, the
    proposals and statements presented to date have argued exactly the opposite, and - perhaps most
    importantly - proposals to ban civilian firearms ownership have not been rejected.

    We are told "Trust us; an ATT will not interfere with state domestic regulation of firearms."
    Yet, there are constant calls for exactly such measures.

    We are told "Trust us; an ATT will only affect the illegal trade in firearms." But then we're told
    that in order to control the illegal trade, all states must control the legal firearms trade.

    We are told, "Trust us; an ATT will not require registration of civilian firearms." Yet, there are
    numerous calls for record-keeping, and firearms tracking from production to eventual
    destruction. That's nothing more than gun registration by a different name.

    We are told, "Trust us; an ATT will not create a new international bureaucracy." Well, that's
    exactly what is now being proposed -- with a tongue-in-cheek assurance that it will just be a
    SMALL bureaucracy.

    We are told, "Trust us; an ATT will not interfere with the lawful international commerce in
    civilian firearms." But a manufacturer of civilian shotguns would have to comply with the same
    regulatory process as a manufacturer of military attack helicopters.

    We are told, "Trust us; an ATT will not interfere with a hunter or sport shooter travelling
    internationally with firearms." However, he would have to get a so-called "transit permit"
    merely to change airports for a connecting flight.

    Mr. Chairman, our list of objections extends far beyond the proposals I just mentioned.
    Unfortunately, my limited time today prevents me from providing greater detail on each of our
    objections. I can assure you, however, that each is based on American law, as well as the
    fundamental rights guaranteed by the United States Constitution.

    It is regrettable that proposals affecting civilian firearms ownership are woven throughout the
    proposed ATT. That being the case, however, there is only one solution to this problem: the
    complete removal of civilian firearms from the scope of any ATT. I will repeat that point as it is
    critical and not subject to negotiation - civilian firearms must not be part of any ATT. On this
    there can be no compromise, as American gun owners will never surrender their Second
    Amendment freedom.

    It is also regrettable to find such intense focus on record-keeping, oversight, inspections,
    supervision, tracking, tracing, surveillance, mark ing, documentation, verification, paper trails
    and data banks, new global agencies and data centers. Nowhere do we find a thought about
    respecting anyone's right of self-defense, privacy, property, due process, or observing personal
    freedoms of any kind.

    Mr. Chairman, I'd be remiss if I didn't also discuss the politics of an ATT. For the United States
    to be a party to an ATT, it must be ratified by a two-thirds vote of the U.S. Senate. Some do not
    realize that under the U.S. Constitution, the ultimate treaty power is not the President's power to
    negotiate and sign treaties; it is the Senate's power to approve them.

    To that end, it's important for the Preparatory Committee to understand that the proposed ATT is
    already strongly opposed in the Senate - the very body that must approve it by a two-thirds
    majority. There is a letter addressed to President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton that is
    currently being circulated for the signatures of Senators who oppose the ATT. Once complete,
    this letter will demonstrate that the proposed ATT will not pass the U.S. Senate.

    So there is extremely strong resistance to the ATT in the United States , even before the treaty is
    tabled. We are not aware of any precedent for this - rejecting a proposed treaty before it's even
    submitted for consideration - but it speaks to the level of opposition. The proposed ATT has
    become more than just controversial, as the Internet is awash with articles and messages calling
    for its rejection. And those messages are all based on the same objection - infringement on the
    constitutional freedom of American gun owners.

    The cornerstone of our freedom is the Second Amendment. Neither the United Nations, nor any
    other foreign influence, has the authority to meddle with the freedoms guaranteed by our Bill of
    Rights, endowed by our Creator, and due to all humankind.

    Therefore, the NRA will fight with all of its strength to oppose any ATT that includes civilian
    firearms within its scope.

    Thank you.
  2. timberfaller

    timberfaller Well-Known Member

    Feb 24, 2007
    Eastern Washington
    The UN:

    A bunch of thug's trying to rule other thug's!!!

    Third world country's doing their best to bring all into third world status!
  3. noknock1

    noknock1 Active Member

    Jan 29, 1998
    Stranger in a Strange Land
    Thank GOD for the NRA.... Still the most effective pro-gun lobby group in the game...
  4. dhwbailey

    dhwbailey Member

    Jan 29, 1998
    Statement by the United Nations Delegation of Canada
    Arms Trade Treaty Preparatory Committee
    July 14, 2011

    Mr. Chairman:

    The Canadian delegation would like to thank you for the draft paper that you provided us when we last met in March 2011. We believe that the paper is a good basis in serving to guide delegates’ thinking on the details of a potential treaty.

    Mr. Chairman:

    Canada regards the opening section of your paper, entitled “Principles” to be a very good encapsulation of the purpose of a future ATT and could well serve as the preamble for the treaty. We welcome all 19 clauses in this section. Canada would like to propose one more clause for inclusion in this section.

    Canada would like to see language in the “Principles” section that explicitly recognizes that there is a legal trade in small arms for legitimate civilian uses, including for sporting, hunting and collecting purposes. To that end, therefore, Canada would propose the addition of a 20th clause to the “Principles” section that would read as follows:

    “Reaffirming that small arms have certain legitimate civilian uses, including sporting, hunting and collecting purposes.”

    Canada has some concerns about the wording of Clause 10 which states that, inter alia, States have a right to “…manufacture, develop, acquire, import, export, transfer and retain…” conventional weapons. This language is identical to that found in UN General Assembly resolution 64/48 except for one important addition: it has added the word “acquire” to the list of States’ rights. Canada would prefer to revert to the language used in resolution 64/48 and already agreed to by a large majority of States. Canada would also like to point out that States’ inherent right to self-defence is noted more than once in the Chair’s draft paper.

    Mr. Chairman:

    The section entitled “Goals and Objectives” begins with the phrase “An Arms Trade Treaty will:” Canada suggests that a more appropriate introductory clause to this section would be “The purpose of the Arms Trade Treaty is to:”

    We welcome the clean and simple categories set out in the Scope section. However, with regard to the inclusion of small arms and light weapons, Canada supports the proposal made by Japan and Italy in March to exclude sporting and hunting firearms for recreational use from the treaty.

    As you know, Mr. Chairman, one of the contentious items under Scope is that of “ammunition.” Canada believes that it is important to include this item under the scope of the ATT, but it is also important that we be flexible in how the issue of ammunition is considered in order to promote the maximum possible participation in a future treaty and thus achieve balance with respect to the substance of the treaty and subscription to it. We must also take into account each state's legislation and respecting existing national legal frameworks. Canada is willing to work with other delegations to develop a compromise to address the concerns of some delegations and thereby promote maximum possible participation in a future ATT.

    In addition, Canada supports the suggestion made by some delegations in March that high volume items such as ammunition be exempted from reporting requirements.

    Canada notes the inclusion of both, ‘Parts and Components’ and ‘Technology and Equipment’ within the scope of items to be covered by the treaty. While Canada has no objection over the control of these items and technology per se, their inclusion in an ATT could require the development of detailed control lists to allow states full knowledge of what is to be controlled.

    Canada also has thoughts about the activities listed under Scope but I will discuss these concerns later when we come to the Annex.

    With respect to the section entitled “Criteria,” as we saw when we last met in March, there continue to be differences over the inclusion of sub-clauses dealing with socio-economic development and with corruption, namely clause 5 and the second part of clause 6 under sub-section B of Section I. Canada is not convinced that including such criteria in an ATT would be workable.

    Finally, Mr. Chairman: I would like to address the definitions of transactions or activities as outlined in Annex A of your draft text.

    On the item “Transfer,” your draft has what amounts to two different definitions of “transfer.” The first one, in brackets, is a list of possible types of movement of goods that would be considered “transfers” such as imports, exports, loans and so on. The second, more general, definition is contained in the text following the bracketed list which contains elements of physical movement and of control. These two definitions do not necessarily coincide. Clarity is needed on this item based on one of the two definitions of “transfer” that now exists in your draft text, perhaps by choosing and clarifying one or the other of these definitions. In either case, Canada would make two small suggestions, first, we would propose the removal of the term “transport” from the proposed definition of “transfer,” and secondly we suggest that the language to be used should ensure that the ability of military and police forces to move arms across borders for their own use during operations conducted in accordance with international law, is not impacted by an ATT.

    On the item “Brokering,” while Canada supports taking action to address illicit brokering, Canada would also note that many important questions will need to be answered in terms of the scope of activities and of regulation envisioned for brokering within an ATT before Canada can pronounce on this issue. Specifically, further clarification will be needed on a range of aspects in order to better define what is meant by brokering, including the responsibilities of State-Parties to a future ATT. The aspects that would need clarification would include:

    The precise definition of the term “brokering;” and
    Whether or not brokers should be regulated in the same way as exports and, if so, should an ATT set out how this is done, or should it be left to national authorities to determine their own national regulatory process?

    Canada also has concerns over the extraterritorial application of brokering measures.

    The issue of extraterritoriality arises again when we consider the issue of “re-export” under transfer. Canada is very cautious about the extraterritorial application of national laws. Therefore, should “re-export” be included in an ATT, care has to be taken to define what this means and to ensure that extraterritorial application of laws does not undermine the national discretion of receiving states.

    On the issue of treaty implementation, States Parties should take the necessary legislative and administrative measures to implement the treaty, but there must be national discretion on how such measures are put in place. There is no “one-size-fits-all” model. As such, Canada does not wish to see overly-detailed and prescriptive provisions on implementation.

    Mr. Chairman: Let me again thank you for your work in drafting the text that you provided us when we last met in March.

    Thank you.
  5. bill1949

    bill1949 Well-Known Member

    Jan 29, 1998
    Screw the UN and the Horse they rode in on...Bill
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