For years, the National Rifle Association (NRA) has been falsely claiming that the U.N. Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) will override U.S. sovereignty and require the United States to create a civilian gun registry, which will lead to extreme gun control laws.
While this rumor is not true, it has been an effective fundraising trick for the NRA and has even been cited by Republican members of Congress as a reason to oppose the ATT, which President Obama supports.
Yesterday, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry signed the ATT, which bans countries from shipping weapons to war criminals or nations that commit war crimes.
The American Bar Association has previously stated that "the treaty would not require new domestic regulations of firearms."
The only opposition to the ATT is North Korea, Iran, Cuba, the NRA, many Republicans and Fox News, which pushed the NRA's debunked claims yet again, noted MediaMatters.org.
Fox News host Heather Nauert said on Sept. 25: "Gun supporters are opposing part of [the ATT] because it requires the United States government to adopt a new civilian gun tracking system, and that could sidestep the Second Amendment" (video below).
Fox News guest and conservative radio host Lars Larson said that if the ATT were ratified, "We would be giving up some of the sovereignty of the United States."
"This treaty has an expectation that end users of imported pistols, I'll give you an example, I own a Sig Sauer pistol, it comes from Germany, imported to the U.S., this treaty would require that the U.S. maintain a registry of the end users. I'm the end user," claimed Larson (video below).
However, that is "importing" a weapon as Larson admits. Page 3 of the ATT clearly describes a "national control system" to regulate the "export" of weapons, not the import.
Also, page 8 of the ATT reaffirms it applies to "exports" and does not supercede U.S. law when it says a nation "shall maintain national records, pursuant to its national laws and regulations, of its issuance of export authorizations or its actual exports of the conventional arms."
Page one of the ATT states that the treaty is "reaffirming the sovereign right of any state to regulate and control conventional arms exclusively within its territory, pursuant to its own legal or constitutional system."
But that didn't stop NRA lobbyist Chris Cox from falsely stating in a Sept. 25 press release that the ATT "threatens individual firearm ownership with an invasive registration scheme" and "could be construed to require such a registry to be made available to foreign governments."