Tuesday, June 4, 2013

"United States Welcomes Opening of Arms Trade Treaty for Signature"

The headline is from a release put out by the State Department noting that the United States planned to sign the UN's Arms Trade Treaty. Maybe the vaguely French looking Secretary of State who, by the way, served in Vietnam, welcomes it along with the rest of the Obama Administration but most assuredly I don't welcome it and neither do at least 130 members of Congress.
Last week, 130 members of Congress signed a letter to Obama and Kerry urging them to reject the measure for this and other reasons.

"As your review of the treaty continues, we strongly encourage your administration to recognize its textual, inherent and procedural flaws, to uphold our country's constitutional protections of civilian firearms ownership, and to defend the sovereignty of the United States, and thus to decide not to sign this treaty," the lawmakers wrote.

The chance of adoption by the U.S. is slim, even if Obama goes ahead and signs it -- as early as Monday, or possibly months down the road. A majority of Senate members have come out against the treaty. A two-thirds majority would be needed in the Senate to ratify.
 Kerry's statement goes on to say it won't infringe on the Second Amendment.
The ATT will not undermine the legitimate international trade in conventional weapons, interfere with national sovereignty, or infringe on the rights of American citizens, including our Second Amendment rights.
I wonder if he considers the walking of guns to Mexico in Operation Fast and Furious to have been "legitimate international trade in conventional weapons" as it certainly did interfere with the national sovereignty of Mexico. Kerry's remark that it won't infringe upon the Second Amendment does not even dignify a response.

According to the Toronto Globe and Mail, Canada, by the way, has not yet decided whether or not it plans to sign the Arms Trade Treaty.
The federal government hasn’t decided whether it agrees with the UN’s arms trade treaty, despite having voted to move it ahead in the first place, Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird said Monday.

“We believe that any treaty regarding the sale of munitions that helps move the international community closer to world-leading standards is a good thing,” Baird said during question period. “We participated actively in these discussions. I think we have an obligation to listen before we act, and that is why we will be consulting with Canadians before the government takes any decision.”
The Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister went on to say that the Canadian Government sees a potential link between the ATT and their former gun registry which they abolished last year.

I think the Canadians are being a heck of a lot smarter about this than the US which doesn't surprise me in the least.

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