“Gun-Grabbers Undermine U.S. Sovereignty”
by John M. Snyder
American gun owners face a double-whammy: A political establishment that seeks to undermine both 2nd Amendment rights and United States national sovereignty.
For decades, gun-grabbers in politics, academe and media have promoted various gun-control schemes to weaken if not ultimately eliminate the individual 2nd Amendment right of law-abiding American citizens to keep and bear arms.
They’ve proposed federal firearms registration, gun-owner licensing, handgun-purchase waiting periods, one-gun-a-month handgun-purchase limitations, bans on inexpensive handguns, bans on semiautomatic firearms, bans on .50-caliber firearms, bans on personal defensive firearms use, limitations on gun shows, and almost any other restrictive approach they can dream up.
Gun-grabbers invariably argue that such proposals will diminish the ability of criminals to use firearms in the perpetration of criminal acts. They seem not to have gotten through their thick heads that criminals who by definition do not obey laws prohibiting crime are not dissuaded by laws against gun possession or use. In fact, as John R. Lott documented in his book, More Guns Less Crime, laws that facilitate citizen access to firearms correlate with rates of reduction in crimes of violence. What a surprise: Criminals don’t want to face armed citizens!
America’s 90 million gun owners, who own about 200 million rifles, shotguns and handguns and now purchase well over a million firearms a month, so far have been able to thwart most national attempts to promote severely restrictive firearms legislation.
Now, however, America’s 2nd Amendment community faces a new threat: Gun-grabbers, stymied to a large extent by a wall of opposition from America’s scores of millions of gun-owning voters, now find hope in the movement to curtail American sovereignty. As diplomat John Bolton notes, Americans traditionally understood sovereignty “to mean our collective right to govern ourselves within our constitutional framework.”
This has meant, among other things, “don’t tread on our right to keep and bear arms,” as the Supreme Court ruled last summer in the landmark District of Columbia v. Heller case, the 2nd Amendment protects individual gun rights.
Bolton points out, though, that “today’s liberal elite” dismiss the historical understanding of sovereignty. They postulate a concept of multi-national authority according to which individual states, including our United States, must conform to the rules of the new entity. If the new entity, whether it is the United Nations, a North American Union, or some other association of individual states, thinks that citizens do not have a right to keep and bear arms, and the U.S. is a member of the entity, then it’s goodbye the 2nd Amendment and Americans’ gun rights.
Gun-grabbers for some time have worked assiduously to induce the United States to sign a treaty that would curtail drastically Americans’ gun rights. So far, the United States has avoided taking such a drastic, unconstitutional step. But the Obama Administration could well bring a reversal of policy. Obama may want to do an end run around American gun owners by signing such an international agreement and subverting citizen rights in that way. The administration propaganda nonsense that the Mexican drug wars are fueled with American firearms could be a prelude to such a program.
The thrust of the movement for a so-called “Peace and Security through Disarmament” program is a call for international regulation of the production and sale of small arms, including rifles, shotguns and handguns, and including, obviously, production and sale in the United States.
The gun-grabbers are seeking to promote and implement a 2001 UN resolution calling for a Program of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects.
Supporters of the program have been trying to neutralize American opposition by alleging that the program and its supporters contemplate action against only “illegal” or “illicit” guns or military-style firearms.
They do not mention that the seminal UN document in this matter designates as illicit those arms labeled illicit by a global gun-control body. The program calls on individual nations “to put in place, where they do not exist, regulations and administrative procedures to exercise effective control over the production of small arms and light weapons within their areas of jurisdiction and over the export, import, transit or retransfer of such weapons, in order to prevent illegal manufacture of and illicit trafficking in small arms or light weapons, or their diversion to unauthorized recipients.”
The program demands the adoption and implementation, “in the states that have not already done so, of the necessary legislative measures to establish as criminal offenses under their domestic law the illegal manufacture, possession, stockpiling and trade of small arms and light weapons within their areas of jurisdiction, in order to ensure that those engaged in such activities can be prosecuted under appropriate national penal codes.”
International Action Network
A prime mover behind the program is the International Action Network on Small Arms (IANSA). It defines small arms as “weapons that can be carried and used by an individual, for example, revolvers, pistols, rifles, shotguns, submachine guns and assault rifles.”
Included in the program are proposals for gun registration to be enforced at the international level, international regulations for manufacturing, distributing and retailing of guns and ammunition, and UN-sanctioned limitations on the possession and use of small arms.
IANSA is a global movement of 800 civil society organizations working in 120 countries for restrictive gun control policies. Its funders include the United Kingdom, Belgium, Sweden, Norway, the Ford Foundation, Rockefeller Foundation, Compton Foundation, Ploughshares Fund., John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, Samuel Rubin Foundation and Christian Aid.
They’re powerful. They’re out to gut the 2nd Amendment by undermining American sovereignty. They’ll succeed unless American gun owners fight them, and fight them hard.
Mr. Snyder, former National Rifle Association magazine editor, is public affairs director of the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms and a director of the Council for America®. He is the founder of the St. Gabriel Possenti Society and author of "Gun Saint."