But in the U.S., the NRA says it sees a creeping attempt to limit civilian gun ownership within nations — even though the focus now is on setting standards for arms exports and imports.
The international issues “necessarily will come to involve at some point domestic laws and policies regarding firearms,” said former congressman Bob Barr, a leading NRA voice on the subject.
“That’s not what we’re looking at here,” countered Greg Puley, of the Control Arms coalition of pro-treaty advocacy groups. “The point is to control trade in weapons that contribute to conflict and atrocities.”
Contra Mr. Puley, US domestic restriction of private gun purchases is exactly the expected outcome here. How could it be otherwise?
Just as domestic restrictions on guns serve to keep weapons from law-abiding citizens without affecting the ability of criminals to obtain them, so international restrictions only make it more difficult for oppressed populations to defend themselves from “conflict and atrocities” perpetrated by their own governments. State supported Sudanese Islamist militias will not be impeded in the least while the defenseless people they kill in Darfur will be blockaded.
Of course the dictators’ club at the UN will support any effort to disarm free individuals. That’s how dictatorships behave. But why should democracies like the UK, Australia and Japan support such efforts? Bravo to the NRA for standing up to the dictators and foolish democrats.