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How The United Nations Endangers Your Firearm Freedom

Thursday, March 17, 2011

At the end of this month, United Nations delegates will descend upon New York City to continue working out the details of their Arms Trade Treaty (ATT), which is expected to be released for ratification this summer.

Although the supposed purposes of that treaty might sound good, the reality behind the rhetoric is that it’s likely to contain a wide variety of schemes--from microstamping and gun registration to outright bans and confiscation--that could devastate your Second Amendment rights.

Worse yet, the whole notion of “global gun control” through international agreements appears to have the full support of the Obama White House.

This is a new and dangerous development.

When planning on the Arms Trade Treaty began in 2006, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton unequivocally opposed the treaty.

But in 2009, the Obama administration, through Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, formally reversed that position, signaling that they would rather have firearm freedom defined by foreign gun-banners than by our U.S. Constitution!

For a glimpse of what these international interlopers want for America, just look at their standard-bearer, the International Action Network for Small Arms (IANSA), an enormous group encompassing virtually all the world’s anti-gun organizations.

Among IANSA’s many financiers is Hungarian billionaire George Soros, who uses his staggering wealth to promote his vision of a world where national sovereignty is cast aside in favor of “global norms.”

You and I know our nation was founded for the precise purpose of escaping “global norms” and establishing a republic in which “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” were reserved as the God-given birthrights of every citizen.

Today, the White House is evidently less interested in protecting the rights of the American people than in pandering to the likes of Mexican President Felipe Calderùn.

In a speech to the U.S. Congress last year, Calderùn dishonestly suggested that the 2004 sunset of the “assault weapon” ban and the legal trade in conventional firearms here in the U.S. are somehow to blame for the horrific drug gang violence in Mexico.

So don’t be surprised when the gun haters try to force “global gun control” down our throats on the pretext of protecting Mexico from narco-terrorism.

And while the Arms Trade Treaty is the most imminent international threat to the Second Amendment, it’s hardly the only one.

In 2001, the United Nations initiated its “Programme of Action” for gun control, which pressures governments to tighten firearm restrictions. Unlike the ATT, this is a non-legally binding document--for now. Next year, that status could change with a vote.

And the Organization of American States (OAS) small arms treaty, or CIFTA, as it’s also known, is still smoldering in the background, waiting to be ratified when the time is right.

Any one of these broad international agreements could foster the growth of a global gun-ban bureaucracy, with all the restrictions, taxes, inefficiencies, waste and corruption that have characterized bureaucracies since the beginning--yet with no effect on crime.

That’s what we’ve seen in countries around the globe--from Australia and South Africa to England and Canada--that have adopted the kinds of gun bans that the U.N. now wants to impose upon the U.S.

What’s especially outrageous is that while they talk about “openness, transparency and consensus,” they also try to keep the American people in the dark about what they want to do.

Last summer, the United Nations shut out NRA, all non-governmental organizations and even ordinary citizens--in other words, everyone except member governments--from even listening to most of their discussions on the Arms Trade Treaty.

But these barricades shouldn’t come as any surprise.

After all, the United Nations represents the interests of governments--not citizens. And it’s no mystery why many of the world’s repressive regimes would want to keep firearms out of the hands of their subjects.

Thomas Paine once said, “It is the responsibility of the patriot to protect his country from its government.”

NRA will heed his warning even if no one else will.

I’ll be in New York to monitor the Arms Trade Treaty discussions, and we will do all in our power to ensure the concerns of the American people are heard--whether the U.N. likes it or not.

We must never allow the ideals that make America the last, best hope for freedom in the world to be destroyed, damaged or diminished in the least.

If foreign powers insist upon pushing their idea of “global norms” across our borders, NRA will be the first to alert and mobilize the American people to stop them.

For ongoing coverage of these events as they unfold, and analysis and commentary on what it all means, please visit

And while the Arms Trade Treaty is the most imminent international threat to the Second Amendment, it’s hardly the only one.



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Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.