Abbott aghast on arms treaty

Posted Thursday, Sep. 26, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

Have more to add? News tip? Tell us

A United Nations treaty to regulate the international sale of conventional weapons and keep them out of the hands of terrorists and organized criminals has enraged the American gun lobby, the Capitol Hill politicians who bow to that lobby and the Texas attorney general who wants to be governor.

Shortly after Secretary of State John Kerry signed the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty Wednesday on behalf of the United States, Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott accused the Obama administration of “trampling” constitutional liberty and attempting “to subject Americans’ right to bear arms to the oversight of the United Nations.”

Abbott urged the U.S. Senate to vote against ratifying the treaty, but said if it did not, “Texas stands ready to lead the charge to have the treaty overturned in court.”

If the attorney general did sue over this issue, it would be the 30th lawsuit Texas has filed against actions by the Obama administration.

Once again Abbott, who is prone to hyperbole when it comes to conservative causes and fighting anything remotely related to Obama, has grossly overstated the intent and impact of the treaty in an obvious appeal to the pro-gun advocates and the rigid base of the Republican Party.

Passed in April by the U.N. General Assembly — on a vote of 154 for, three against and 23 abstentions — the arms treaty would require that the human rights records of international buyers be considered before weapons are sold, and it prohibits transferring arms that would be used in the commission of genocide, crimes against humanity and certain war crimes, the UN News Centre reported.

Although the treaty specifically mentions regulating weapons like armored combat vehicles, battle tanks, combat aircraft and such, it also mentions “small arms and light weapons,” the phrase that has Abbott and others concerned that the U.N. eventually will regulate guns in the U.S. and require gun registration.

If that’s what this treaty does, it’s ridiculous to think the U.S. Senate would ratify it.

But that doesn’t stop the fear mongering when it comes to the Second Amendment, particularly with an election year looming.

Expect an all-out push to persuade senators to vote against ratification, regardless of what the treaty says.

The three countries voting against the treaty at the United Nations were Iran, North Korea and Syria. That’s not good company.

Looking for comments?

We welcome your comments on this story, but please be civil. Do not use profanity, hate speech, threats, personal abuse or any device to draw undue attention. Our policy requires those wishing to post here to use their real identity.

Our commenting policy | Facebook commenting FAQ | Why Facebook?