Secretary of State John Kerry signing the United Nations small arms treaty is nothing more than empty symbolism, and President Obama will get nowhere in his latest attempt to advance gun-control legislation, says Bill Frady, host of "Lock 'n' Load Radio" presented by Gun Owners of America, who also noted that the U.S. government has been buying up AK-47 rifles and ammunition.
Kerry signed the U.N.'s Arms Trade Treaty this week while in New York City for the opening of the U.N. General Assembly. Supporters say it would clamp down on weapons trafficking between rogue regimes and terrorist organizations. Frady told WND it would have a restricting effect on law-abiding gun owners in the U.S. as well.
"It also dictates to the signing states that they have to impose new rules and regulations within their nations to make sure they're able to comply with this treaty and that covers small arms," Frady said. "Terrorists are not running around with American-made weapons. They're running around with AKs. There's various nations that will underwrite any cause (such as) Russia, China. The AK is the prevalent weapon on the planet. So we're not the problem. I did notice that along the way (Obama) did manage to get in there and back Syrian rebels to the tune of $340 million.
"I'm sure he wants to arm them," he said. "The United States Army has been buying AKs and AK magazines and AK ammo. I'm just presuming that they want to send that to our Syrian brethren, the great rebel freedom fighters, so they'll have something they're accustomed to."
Like any treaty, this one would need two-thirds support in the U.S. Senate to be ratified in this country. A procedural vote months ago shows the plan cannot even draw a simple majority in the Democratically controlled chamber. As a result, Frady said Kerry and Obama embracing the treaty is just window dressing.
"For a moment, it's a symbolic victory for him, but that's going to last about five minutes," said Frady, who believes Obama will try to tell his base this is the best he can do given the current makeup of Congress.
Other gun-rights advocates are more fearful that Obama may try to implement the treaty through executive orders if the Senate continues it's opposition. Senate Foreign Relations Committee ranking member Bob Corker has written the president and strongly discouraged enforcing any component of the treaty without Senate ratification. Frady believes Obama could pay a hefty price if he defies the Senate.
"If he were to actually try to do that, that might be a turning point for a lot of people. Clearly, he doesn't have the mandate that he thinks he does. Gun control is not on the minds of too many people right now in the wake of everything that's been going on around here. The gun free zone is what's on everybody's mind," said Frady. "I think that would be a very bad move."
The Democratic push for additional gun-control legislation failed to advance in the U.S. Senate earlier this year. Nonetheless, President Obama made another plea for Americans to demand new laws earlier this week. At the memorial service for Washington Navy Yard shooting victims, Obama asked if Americans "care enough" about the victims to press relentlessly for additional gun restrictions.
"Of course we care enough. The gun-owning populace cringes, not because we know we're having to gird ourselves for more gun control talk but because we don't like innocent lives being snuffed," Frady said. "Sixty-nine hundred times a day, people defend themselves with guns. A gun is a tool."
Frady pointed to a recent slashing spree on a Texas campus as proof that people need guns to defend themselves because threats to life can come in many forms.
"He went into a college where they didn't have any guns and he slashed with impunity. The fact that nobody died is just dumb luck," he said. "It's a very blatant reality that where you don't allow people to arm themselves, they are fish in a barrel."
The gun debate may be off the front burner in Washington but it's red hot in some states. Maryland's new gun-control laws take effect next week and voters recalled two Colorado lawmakers who backed new restrictions in that state.
One of the marquee races this November is the race for governor of Virginia between state Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli and former Democratic Party chairman Terry McAuliffe. In a state where Democrats have historically shied away from gun-control rhetoric and even court the National Rifle Association, McAuliffe is now rolling the dice by backing universal background checks, magazine capacity limits and a return to Virginia's former policy of only allowing one gun purchase per month. Some of those positions mirror the new laws in Colorado.
"It's sort of like Terry McAuliffe is trying to parachute into Virginia and tell everybody in Virginia that is law-abiding that 'I'm smarter than you and I know how to take care of you.' Go ahead and embrace Ken Cuccinelli, Virginia," Frady said. "You will not be sorry."