AMERICAN FREE PRESS Roving Editor Mark Anderson and AFP’s Eastern Bureau Chief Jeff Smith provide post coverage and analysis of the 10-day United Nations Arms Trade Treaty Conference (ATT 2013), in this informative and entertaining interview (45:03).
Dave Gahary, a former submariner in the U.S. Navy, is the host of AFP’s ‘Underground Interview’ series.
Gun Owners In Continuing Danger, Senate May Consider New Legislation, Major Gun Restrictions Become Law in States
• Gun Control Advocates Vow To Continue Efforts; New York’s Mayor Bloomberg Will Continue Push
By Jeffrey Smith
Second Amendment advocates and patriots nationwide enjoyed a major victory as the Senate rejected strong new gun control legislation which included what many said would be the start of a national registry of firearms. The Senate refused attempts to assemble the 60 votes needed for a bipartisan agreement which would have allowed new legislation on gun ownership to proceed. Supporters of gun control shouted curses and choruses of “shame on you” from the Senate balcony when it became clear they would not vote in their direction.
But while many patriotic and firearms rights activists were encouraged, many of the more senior members in both sectors strongly cautioned that very serious threats to the Second Amendment continue and many note that the Obama-backed measure only missed proceeding by a thin six votes.
Many also note that the last two months have seen the worst legislative reverses on the state level in the last four decades. New York, Maryland, and Connecticut all passed strong new restrictions on gun ownership. The states of Delaware, Rhode Island, Oregon and California at this time has either passed or is seriously considering major new gun control legislation. In Pennsylvania, lawmakers proposed increased legal surveillance on gun purchases. Several states are also considering the lifting of prohibitions on the release of personal information on gun owners.
For their part, gun control advocates, as a group, quickly vowed to continue their fight.
Second Amendment advocates also strongly point to the Obama administration having ordered the activation of Organizing for Action (OFA), Obama’s vast grass roots street organization, on the issue. Jon Carson, the group’s director, made it clear the huge Obama organization is now targeting any Senators who did not vote for gun control.
The President, shortly after hearing of the senate’s actions, assured gun control supporters that victory would be theirs. “Sooner or later were going to get this,” he reportedly said.
New York City’s billionaire Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who has spent millions in personal funds to further gun control, gave several indications last week he fully intended to continue and intensify his efforts.
But while challenges to the Second Amendment have mounted, the last few months have also seen increased questioning as to the quality of response, or lack of response, from key pro-firearms rights organizations, some of which are very well-funded with considerable memberships.
In the Senate, the rejected legislation contained requirements that all gun purchases, including sales between most individuals, would need full purchaser IDs and buyers would have to submit to federal background checks. But patriots nationwide and supporters of Second Amendment groups say that the proposed measures would have quickly assembled a nationwide registry, purchase by purchase, which would shortly contain much of the nation’s stock of firearms in private hands.
A national registry of firearms, even if achieved incrementally over time, has historically been a major objective of such diverse groups as the far-left, liberal elected officials, major media, much of the federal bureaucracy and, many say of most importance, the ultra-powerful world of internationalist non-governmental organizations (NGOs) mainly located on New York City’s Upper East Side and in London.
The Senate actions followed the passage of strong arms control measures by the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) after the 10-day Arms Trade Treaty Conference (ATT 2013) both held in New York. This, experts say, will have powerful worldwide effects which fully include the legal status of firearms inside the U.S.
For their part, gun control advocates say that names which are collected at the time of a firearm’s purchase will pass through the federal ID check system and not be in any way retained, an assertion which absolutely no one among Second Amendment advocates or the general patriotic community nationwide apparently believes. There are also major questions being raised as to exactly who will have access to the names collected. In the past, major unauthorized disclosures of personal information held in federal databases have occurred on a repeated basis.
In Missouri, a major scandal erupted when it was discovered that the State Highway Patrol, without authorization, had given the federal government extensive personal information on 163,000 holders of concealed carry permits. Federal officials said the sensitive personal data was needed “to fight social security fraud.”
The current attempts at federal and state legislation comes in an atmosphere which, critics say, is already inflamed due to the president’s recent issuing of his 23 executive actions in January. Included in the Obama administration’s actions is advice to doctors that federal law does not prevent health care professionals from probing patients as to their ownership, or other family members’ ownership, of firearms of any type.
With the failure of conservatives and libertarians in preventing the gun control legislation from proceeding, in the early days of the Senate debate, which many seasoned patriots long said would happen, many close to the overall situation began to observe that exactly the conditions seen during ATT 2013 in New York and during that state’s consideration of sweeping gun control legislation restarted on the federal level, having the prospect of severely hampering efforts to deal with the next round of gun control attempts.
In Washington, in the last two months, there has been a noticeable lack of effective advocacy measures which have long been standard during D.C.’s and larger state’s legislative confrontations. There has been a lack of high visibility news conferences, a lack of mass distributions of pro-firearms literature to the media and public at key moments and most of all, patriots say, there is a striking, and very disturbing, resemblance to what occurred both in Albany and at the UN, in that there is a lack of calls by key leading Second Amendment groups for the kind of mass public gatherings in Washington which have become standard fare in pivotal moments of debates on federal landmark legislation having far-reaching implications for Americans.
At ATT 2013 and the UNGA, the latter entity responsible for approval the landmark international firearms regulations, there were no public gatherings visible for the 10 days of the conference and the UNGA.
In Albany, the only public gathering of any size was a smaller, limited sized, rally on January 19 and then a larger rally February 28 both held after the sweeping gun control measure was already law, serving simply to vent lingering outrage by gun owners.
In Washington, at present, the only significant gun rights rally, should it be held, is scheduled for very late May.
Jeff Smith is a correspondent for AFP’s Eastern Bureau.