Secretary of State John Kerry will sign a sweeping international arms trade agreement on Wednesday after sending it to the Senate on Tuesday. The NRA is predictably angry.
Oh noes! Wingnuts gone wild!
Proving there's more than one way to skin the NRA cat, Secretary of State John Kerry will sign a sweeping arms trade agreement limiting international sales of weapons. It's intended to keep weapons out of the hands of terrorists in the Middle East and pressure Russia to quit selling arms to the Assad regime, but to hear the NRA moan, you'd think it was like turning the keys to the country over to Putin.
The arms treaty, which requires ratification by the Senate and has been attacked by America's pro-gun National Rifle Association, would help Western countries press to curtail Russian arms sales to Syria, where President Bashar al-Assad's government has been accused of widespread abuses in more than two years of civil war.
Amnesty International Secretary General Salil Shetty called Kerry's decision "a milestone towards ending the flow of conventional arms that fuel atrocities and abuse."
The United States and 86 other signatory nations "must implement the treaty and bring to an end the supply of weapons to countries where they would be used to commit or facilitate genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes or other serious human rights violations," Shetty said in a statement.
President Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria, whose country has been repeatedly attacked by a cross-border Islamic jihadist militant group called Boko Haram, told the United Nations such rebellions are "sustained by unfettered access by non-state actors to illicit smart arms and light weapons."
"For us in Africa these are the weapons of mass destruction," he said.
The NRA, which has opposed the treaty from the start, called the April vote a sad day for the United States, the world's No. 1 arms exporter.
Among the NRA's arguments against the treaty are that it undermines American sovereignty and disregards the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, which guarantees citizens the right to bear arms.
Is the NRA out there today shouting about the alleged US citizens in Kenya participating in the horrible mall shooting? Does the NRA support their right to bear arms anywhere in the world even when it means the slaughter of innocents in a terrorist attack?
I think we should extend adherence to UN norms here at home, and start being sensible about who gets to carry small weapons of mass killing and who does not. Maybe background checks as a start?