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Friday, January 11, 2013

The NRA wants to make a "meaningful contribution" to prevent gun violence? Here's one idea.

Amnesty International
The NRA wants to make a "meaningful contribution" to prevent gun violence? Here's one idea.
The National Rifle Association (NRA) wants to make a "meaningful contribution" to prevent gun violence? 

Here's one idea: the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT). The United Nations is preparing to finalize the treaty, which would help stem the flow of weapons to human rights abusers. And world leaders will negotiate and vote on it in March.

We can all agree, children -- no matter where they live -- must be kept safe from gun related violence.

Unfortunately, in so many places around the world, that is not happening as a result of the unregulated global arms trade. There are tens of thousands of children forcibly recruited right now by governments’ armed forces and by non-state armed groups who are often armed with weapons irresponsibly traded by governments and private corporations. Children are also part of the 26 million people who have been displaced by armed conflict fueled by guns.

Despite being the largest exporter of small arms and conventional weapons, the U.S. has not been a leader in the effort to establish this treaty due to a campaign of misinformation and lies – orchestrated by the NRA—to force the U.S. government to oppose and weaken the ATT1.

Tell the NRA to stop its campaign of lies about the ATT and stop interfering in U.S. foreign policy.

The NRA has asserted that the ATT would infringe on the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, the right to bear arms. But, in fact, the ATT will have no bearing on domestic gun ownership2, as it deals exclusively with the flow of weapons between – not within – countries.

Let's be clear about something. There is virtually no regulation of the international arms trade. Governments and groups known to commit atrocities and abuses can buy weapons traded on the open market and use them with impunity.

This must stop. The ATT could save hundreds of lives every day by establishing common global standards for how countries import, export and transfer conventional weapons.

By dropping its opposition to the ATT, the NRA has an opportunity to help keep guns out of the hands of those who routinely target children and others—saving countless lives around the world.

Tell the NRA to stop helping human rights abusers get weapons.

We've got their attention. Let's keep the pressure on.


Michelle Ringuette
Chief of Campaigns and Programs
Amnesty International USA
1. "National Rifle Association vows to fight arms trade treaty at U.N." Reuters, December 28, 2012.

2. http://www.un.org/disarmament/ATT/media/presskit/ATT_Myths_and_Facts.pdf

A Deadly Gift from the Gun Lobby

Don't let the NRA help give war criminals, dictators and human rights abusers a free pass to get weapons. No more standing in the way of an Arms Trade Treaty that could help save millions of lives worldwide!

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