UN Arms Trade Treaty Dies Sudden Death

The United Nations, and especially its General Assembly, is chief instrument of globalism and international government today, and precursor of world government. (And zero population growth) The UN works against the sovereignty of nation-states.
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The UN Arms Trade Treaty is dead. The US delegation to the arms trade conference backed out at the last minute. They said they needed more time to consider its text. Three other delegations (Russia, Indonesia, and India) said the same. The putative President probably pulled the treaty so that he wouldn’t have to send it to the Senate until after the election.

UN Arms Trade Treaty conference ends

Today was the deadline for an agreement on a UN arms trade treaty. The first drafts came out on Tuesday of this week, and again yesterday. They mentioned “small arms and light weapons” among eight classes of weapons that the UN proposed to regulate. At last report, fifty-one Senators were on record to vote against the treaty if the putative President ever asked the Senate to ratify it.

At 5:44 p.m. EDT, Foreign Policy first reported that the UN arms trade conference had failed to agree on a treaty text. Thomas Countryman, the lead US delegate, told his fellow delegates that the US government needed more time.

Activists react

The United Nations, promulgator of the UN Arms Trade Treaty

The flag of the United Nations. (Public domain as per UN policy.)

Gun control advocates, of course, reacted bitterly. The head of the Arms Control Association blamed putative President Barack H. Obama for failing to lead effectively on the issue. The head of Oxfam said much the same:

Moving forward, [putative] President Obama must show the political courage [he needs]  to make a strong treaty that contains strong rules on human rights a reality.

Nick Purpura, of Wall Township, New Jersey, told CNAV that

Obama made a very intelligent political move. Do you really think he wanted to take this [UN Arms Trade Treaty] to the election?

The Foreign Policy report quoted unnamed “diplomats” as saying that the US wanted to delay sending any treaty to the Senate for six months. That would put the treaty off until after the election. But until then, gun sales in the US will not be subject to international regulation.

Obama could have signed the treaty anyway, and Senator Harry Reid (D-NV), Majority Floor Leader, could have put off a formal vote until a “lame duck session” after the election. Obama could then have cited the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties to excuse setting up a national gun registry, to comply with the treaty’s terms. That he did not do this means:

  • Obama and/or Reid were afraid that not enough of those 51 Senators would change their minds in the next five months.
  • Reid was afraid that if he held up the vote on some phony parliamentary pretext, voters would see through that and make sure that he would be Minority Floor Leader next year.
  • Too many Senate Democrats were afraid of losing their jobs. (Some blame then-President Bill Clinton’s assault weapons ban for the Republican takeover of both Houses of Congress in 1994.)

Purpura told CNAV that he waited out several busy signals to get through to the offices of Senators Frank Lautenberg and Robert Menendez (both D-NJ) to complain about the UN Arms Trade Treaty. Frank Lautenberg’s staff would likely never listen. But Robert Menendez is up for re-election this year, and has never made as much noise on gun control as has Lautenberg.

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Terry A. Hurlbut has been a student of politics, philosophy, and science for more than 35 years. He is a graduate of Yale College and has served as a physician-level laboratory administrator in a 250-bed community hospital. He also is a serious student of the Bible, is conversant in its two primary original languages, and has followed the creation-science movement closely since 1993.

70 Responses to UN Arms Trade Treaty Dies Sudden Death

  1. CamilleT says:

    Boy, I sure hope you’re proud of yourself.

    Despite the treaty specifically barring any about regulating internal arms trade, you people ranted about your precious guns.

    We could have had something to make it harder for warlords and terrorists to acquire firearms, but no, your paranoia couldn’t handle it.

    I guess you don’t care about people outside the United States.

  2. TomBombadil says:

    And ignoring your own personal paranoia about people coming for your guns… what do you have to say to the people in Somalia, Afghanistan and all the other hell holes, where the war lords and terrorists now have unfettered access to firearms? And no they can’t defend themselves, because they can’t afford food, never mind guns.

    You really need to wake up and realise that there’s more to the world than your petty paranoia.

    • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

      The villain doth protest too much, methinks. Every text of that treaty that I have read, called specifically for registering and regulating the very sort of “small arms and light weapons” that civilians normally carry. Including, in the interest of full disclosure, the three-shot semi-automatic shotgun that I own.

      Or do you merely suggest that I have a paranoid idea of having to defend myself, either because the government can never do an adequate job, or worse yet, the government is the aggressor? I cite the Waco and Ruby Ridge Incidents. I cite the Battle of Lexington, and indeed the very War for Independence that, once again, we won, and over this very issue. No one can ever justly call an idea “paranoid” if it has the slightest basis in fact or history. I have given you both.

      • TomBombadil says:

        There is a world of difference between “registering and regulating the very sort of “small arms and light weapons” that civilians normally carry. Including, in the interest of full disclosure, the three-shot semi-automatic shotgun that I own” and a UN army coming to take them from you.

        Why shouldn’t you disclose what weapons you own? At least that way when some crazy guy barricades himself inside his compound, the police know what they could be up against. For that matter – why do you feel you need a shotgun to defend yourself, as opposed to a pistol or revolver?

        Waco? Wow, so now you’re defending a cult that abused children. Nice. Next thing, I suppose you’ll claim the government set the compound on fire. And once again, the references to the war of Independence are laughable. It’s not going to happen. If it didn’t happen while Bush junior was expanding his executive powers, it’s not going to happen while you’ve got that black man in the White House. Not only that, but the 1700s were a very different time from today, so using that as an example is silly. Not only that but Waco and Ruby Ridge were clear cases of criminal activities. yes, the authorities were heavy handed, like they were with Rodney King, but their victims weren’t innocent.

        As opposed to so many people that die gun-related deaths in the US.

        Of course, given all your war talk, if you are thinking of going that route, remember that the US spends more on it’s military than the next 26 countries combined. You’d all be squashed like a bug.

        • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

          The first thing you named, is the first step toward the second thing.

          Why shouldn’t I disclose what you demand? Because I own or manage a number of businesses, and one of them is None Of Your. Is that good enough for you? It jolly well had better be. Do I make myself clear?

          Your charges against the Waco people have never once held up or even been tested in a court of law. Now you defend an action in which the police agencies acted as judges, jurors, prosecutors, and executioners. And of course the government set that compound on fire. And they shot people who were trying to get out. I’ve seen the FLIR footage from that incident. The evidence is damning—of the government.

          If you want a group of people to come out of a besieged compound, you send everybody home, except for a very small team that puts up a sign saying, “We’re ready to negotiate.” A wood-frame building smashed half to kindling and the other half pumped full of CS gas doesn’t say “Come out.” It says, “You’re dead.”

          And as to Ruby Ridge, Randy Weaver ought never have faced any liability whatsoever for anything the authorities allege against him. And his wife and son did not deserve to die, either.

          I now have you on record as boasting that you would run a high-handed operation like that again, given the circumstances as popularly described. Therefore anything you have to say, in criticism of the liberties I defend, is absolutely valueless.

          As for your last statement: well, we shall see where the sympathies of the men and women in uniform truly lie.

          • Fergus Mason says:

            “Randy Weaver ought never have faced any liability whatsoever for anything the authorities allege against him.”

            There may have been a case for him to answer about supplying a sawn-off shotgun, but firstly that was at least borderline entrapment and secondly it didn’t need an armed raid to deal with it. Weaver had distasteful friends but that’s not generally a crime.

            “And his wife and son did not deserve to die, either.”

            I agree. The conduct of the raid was a disgrace.

        • Fergus Mason says:

          “why do you feel you need a shotgun to defend yourself, as opposed to a pistol or revolver?”

          Easier to use, more likely to end a situation non-violently by looking huge and intimidating, less likely to be involved in an accidental shooting of Terry himself or a visiting grandchild. Choosing a shotgun over a handgun (which very few people can actually use effectively) is actually a sensible choice. It’s the need for home defence weapons in general that’s more questionable.

      • Fergus Mason says:

        “the three-shot semi-automatic shotgun that I own.”

        Oh dear. Your basic choice of home-defence weapon is OK if you really feel the need for one, but you should get an extended magazine. You’re not trained for close-quarter battle and three rounds isn’t enough to guarantee a hit. I also hope you have No.1 buckshot for it and if it’s a full-sized sporting gun I’d suggest you consider getting a pump-action with a pistol grip and folding stock as well, for the reasons I explain in my article: http://www.helium.com/items/2339444-how-to-choose-a-weapon-for-self-defence

  3. TomBombadil says:

    So, in similar vein, you have no problem when criminals don’t disclose their taxes, or the fact that they have a criminal record, or that they’re a registered sex offender? You can’t be against disclosure of one thing and not another. Technically it’s none of your business that the guy living next to you rapes children, so why should you know that?

    And disclosure is for the benefit of everybody. What if people had known that the Batman shooter was stocking up on automatic weapons before the time, would that have stopped the massacre, do you think.

    Still, given that you’re defending Waco and buying into the “the Feds burned it down!” claptrap, I’m going to go away and facepalm for a bit. The whole point of having an argument, a discussion is that there’s generally two sane, reasonable people involved. Clearly this is not the case here.

    I shall leave you to your delusions.

    • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

      You’re lucky I don’t un-register you and forbid you to register ever again. As it is, I regard you as a laboratory specimen, a prize example, of the very sort of pernicious influence that I have dedicated my life to fighting.

      In my world, the Batman shooter would have gone down in a fusillade of bullets. Even had he not died, he would have been disabled.

      In your world, the government employs snitches. Of which you would be the first to become one. And about those taxes: I would very much like to abolish any tax system that tells people to disclose their private business.

      • TomBombadil says:

        “In my world, the Batman shooter would have gone down in a fusillade of bullets.”

        Along with dozens more innocent people caught in the cross-fire. You would have blood on your hands.

        For you it’s better to have people die, than to prevent a crime. Nice!

        And the “violations of the Constitution” exist only in the minds of the people who hate Obama. If that’s the case, why aren’t there hundreds of cases before the SCOTUS? Why are the cases that are being brought losing?

        “I would very much like to abolish any tax system that tells people to disclose their private business.”

        Well, that explains why you support Romney, who seems to have a reputation for hiding his taxes. Seems you support criminals in general then, because non-disclosure would encourage criminal behaviour. Drug dealers would no longer have to launder money. Fun!

        So in your world, nobody pays tax, corporations use the population to maximise profits and plough nothing back into the community, that doesn’t profit them, criminals walk free and everybody is shooting everybody even mildly suspicious dead.

        And you think that’s Shangri-la. Sounds like hell on earth to me.

        • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

          You are dangerous. Far more dangerous than the typical liberal with whom I have the misfortune to hold converse. A liberal does not care to prevent crime, either (or at least, not the common garden-variety property crime). Give up your valuables, says he, for a mugger or a robber or a burglar is an unauthorized redistribution-of-wealth agent, and nothing more dangerous than that. The only reason they object to the self-styled Joker is that they don’t identify with him, never met anyone like him, regard him as a jerk, and generally think anyone’s a jerk who disagrees with them.

          But you—you actually talk of preventative detention. Martin Milner, as Patrolman Pete Malloy in a 1970’s-era TV drama called Adam-12, once delivered this line:

          If you punished everybody who was going to do something, you’d have half the country in jail.

          And you have worse than forgotten that fact: you dismiss it as incompetent, irrelevant, and immaterial.

          If you want to prevent crime, you must deter it. And the surest deterrent is a hard target, and especially a hundred targets who could join battle with you. A battle that would suddenly be very lopsided, and all on the side of the good guys. But then again, a government as powerful as that for which you call, recognizes no such thing as “the good guys.” Another thing you conveniently, or maybe actually, forget. So maybe the danger in you is more to yourself than to me.

          The violations of the Constitution are let stand because we have now become a nation of men, not a nation of law. You dare accuse me of disrespecting the rule of law. I repudiate that. But I definitely disrespect the rule of men. Particularly the sort of men who violate their oath

          to support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic.

          In my world, direct taxes to support any given administrative unit of the republic, is apportioned by the populations of the units directly below it in rank. Indirect taxation (duties, imposts, and excises) are uniform. The ideal tax would not be a direct tax at all, but an excise. The FairTax is the prize example of a proper tax for a free society. Your money, your business, your decision. No prying into your business, no distinctions as to how you earned your money. When you buy something new with it, you pay the tax. (This is similar to your Value-Added Tax, but collected once, and once only.) Such a tax would actually be cheaper to administer, in addition to avoiding all the intrusiveness of which you are so overly fond.

          And for the record, I reject categorically your suggestion that Mitt Romney is a criminal. He could probably sue you for libel or defamation of character, were he not the public figure that he is. As it is, I as a publisher must disclaim, discredit, and disavow your remarks, a responsibility I cheerfully accept as the price of accepting your remarks for publication.

          I also reject your basic philosophical imperative: that when two or more investors join together to create a joint-stock corporation, they become inherently evil, and that anyone who owns shares of such a corporation, shares in that evil. I remind everyone that by reducing the stakes of government, one eliminates the special privileges that some corporations, in their misguided pursuit of rent-seeking and short-term gain, have acquired, through bribery, deception, and so forth. Some corporations clearly act better, and conversely worse, than others.

          But yours is a world without corporations, and, as far as I can infer, without businessmen of any kind. Instead, your world has only bureaucrats, residential block directors, and various and sundry directorates. It gets along by input-output analysis and Five Year Plans. That didn’t work out so well, did it, mate? In any event, you’re the one building hell on earth, not I.

      • Fergus Mason says:

        “In my world, the Batman shooter would have gone down in a fusillade of bullets.”

        But he wouldn’t have gone down alone. And how many confused people, unsure of where the original shots came from, would have blazed away at the nearest/most heavily armed/blackest person they saw holding a gun? No Terry, the thought of a cinema full of armed untrained people reacting to this incident makes my blood run cold.

        • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

          Don’t assume, as the other guy did, that, in a world where self-defense was allowed, those people would be all that confused. That’s a common-enough mistake to make: to assume that when you change one thing, you don’t affect anything else. Including people’s behavior and habits.

          • Fergus Mason says:

            “Don’t assume, as the other guy did, that, in a world where self-defense was allowed, those people would be all that confused.”

            How is changing the laws on carrying guns going to make people less confused when they’re being shot at in the dark? Be reasonable. Anyone in that cinema carrying a gun would have either forgotten they had it or blazed away randomly at anything they thought was a target, unless they’d had proper CQB training. I know how long it takes to train a competent battle shot, because I’ve done it. It is not a trivial undertaking.

          • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

            Once the debate starts, the education of the public on what it means to defend yourself and others will also start. By the time a President, or a governor, signs a new law, or a judge throws out a bad law (and courts move more slowly than legislatures, most of the time), you’ll have enough people who understand what self-defense means, and how to do it effectively.

            And they’ll think about the other part, too—about not using their guns to settle petty disputes. An armed society is a polite society.

          • TomBombadil says:

            So everybody miraculously transforms into cool-headed snipers, able to take a shot, in a gas-filled cinema, with people running around, screaming and bullets flying everywhere.

            Tell me – just what military training have you undergone that would equip you to handle a situation like that so calmly? It’s not a case of changing habits, it’s changing human nature.

            Your ideal world seems to involve it being populated by Terminators. And innocent people dying in the cross-fire.

          • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

            Not miraculous. As I commented also to Mr. Mason, as soon as someone introduces a bill to make self-defense lawful again, or someone else files a relevant lawsuit and starts the legal process, he also starts a debate, and an education effort. The American people have a remarkable capacity for self-education that you mustn’t admit, for that also would destroy your impression of “Yanks” as a bunch of ignorant rubes, and hence your narrative.

          • Fergus Mason says:

            “you’ll have enough people who understand what self-defense means, and how to do it effectively.”

            I don’t care what they understand, Terry. What matters is if they’re trained or not. Being able to fight a close-quarter battle (which is what we’re talking about here) has nothing to do with understanding. It has to do with hours of training, hours of practice and frequent refreshers. It’s a full-time job. Even most professional soldiers aren’t trained to do what you’re talking about.

            “An armed society is a polite society.”

            The evidence suggests otherwise. In my experience an armed society is a dangerous society full of people with an exaggerated sense of their own status and a hair-trigger ability to take offence. Why is your armed society so much more murderous than every other advanced country?

          • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

            Once the debate started, plenty of people would step forward, willing and able to offer precisely the sort of training you feel the people would need.

          • Fergus Mason says:

            “plenty of people would step forward, willing and able to offer precisely the sort of training you feel the people would need.”

            Really? I doubt it. Even if they did, how many people would be able or willing to put in the time required to undergo that training? Very few. That the training would in fact be needed is not in dispute. Handguns aren’t easy to use effectively under any circumstances, and especially not in close-quarters combat.

          • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

            They would if they realized that the alternative was sacrificing their liberty. We’re back to Ben Franklin’s warning about trying to trade off liberty for safety.

  4. TomBombadil says:

    “As for your last statement: well, we shall see where the sympathies of the men and women in uniform truly lie.”

    With the people who pay their salaries and to the country to whom they swore an oath. A bunch of anarchists like yourself won’t sway their allegiance.

    “I now have you on record as boasting that you would run a high-handed operation like that again, given the circumstances as popularly described.”

    This is part where I call you a barefaced liar. Where did I EVER say I would run an operation like that, let alone boast about it? Are you so delusional, so desperate to lie that you will makes things up out of the comments you read.

    You are a sad, sad man.

    • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

      You said that the victims (your word, not mine) in the Waco and Ruby Ridge incidents were not innocent. I say that one set of victims definitely was. And the other set never got their day in court, had never done harm to anyone outside their community, and suffered summary execution at the hands of the government. You are the barefaced liar between us, not I. I say that you would willingly take the same steps that the ATF and the FBI took, respectively, at Waco and Ruby Ridge. Because as you see it, the victims were not innocent. That gives you the right to do anything you bloody well please to them.

      And who do you think really pays the salaries of the military? And what oath did they swear?

      That I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic, that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same,…and that I will obey the lawful orders of the President of the United States and of all officers superior to me in rank.

      Or the officer’s oath runs,

      and that I will well and faithfully carry out the duties of the office into which I am about to enter.

      When the wholesale violations of the Constitution start, then we shall see where the sympathies of the military lie.

      Especially since the putative President has insulted the military at every turn. When you’re planning to abdicate government, by declaring the citizens and lawful residents out of your protection and making war upon them, you only make your job harder when you give your enforcement apparatus little more than your boot in the backside.

  5. TomBombadil says:

    “the very sort of pernicious influence that I have dedicated my life to fighting.”

    And yet prior to Obama taking office, your posts on Conservapedia and Examiner are all pro-government. Why no complaining about taxes then? You were still paying them? No complaining about Bush’s expanding executive powers? Why no protest over the illegal war in Iraq… if Waco was illegal, then Iraq certainly was.

    I find this thing you’ve “dedicated your life to fighting” starts around 2008. Coincidence?

    • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

      I stood against real criminals, and irregular combatants like the nineteen Hashshasheen who did for the World Trade Center and tried to do for the Pentagon and the Capitol. Now I find myself contending against a government, and its defenders, who regard anyone outside it as a criminal.

  6. TomBombadil says:

    “I stood against real criminals, and irregular combatants like the nineteen Hashshasheen who did for the World Trade Center”

    And what exactly did you do?

    “you actually talk of preventative detention”

    Er… no. What I said is what if they had information that the killer was buying guns and used that information to stop the incident happening. They could have put a tail on him and stopped him the minute he was walking through the car park with his weapons.

    And so what if it’s preventative detention. Are you seriously saying that it’s better that innocent people die? Yes or no answer.

    You don’t care that innocent people die just so long as you don’t have to tell anybody what guns you’re buying.

    That actually makes you a worse human being than the cinema shooter.

    The scary thing is, you don’t even see why I say that.

    • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

      If a revived Pinkerton Detective Agency, or local volunteers, wanted to warn the owners of large public-spectacle venues that somebody was buying a bunch of guns, that would be their affair.

      The point you consistently miss, because it destroys your narrative, is that the targets would be hard. One man, no matter how many guns he’s got, cannot annihilate a hundred people, each with one gun, and knowing how to use it.

      You deny that you called for preventative detention. The most charitable way to reconcile your denial with your original prose, is that that prose was as inexact as Obama’s “Somebody built the roads and bridges…if you own a business…you didn’t build that; somebody else made that happen!”

      But then—the kicker—after denying that you said that, you defend it. And you missed the point of that line I quoted. (I admit it’s a long-ago television show, but I have to give credit where credit is due. I wouldn’t want the estate of Jack Webb to sue me for plagiarism. I especially won’t risk that when I can count on someone like you being willing not only to give evidence, but to lay information with the estate.)

      So once again, here’s the scene. Two patrolmen are discussing a neighbor dispute in which they have already intervened three times in the last twenty-four hours. The two parties jointly own a small runabout. Neither party has threatened the other with a gun. But one party changed the padlock on the garage, and the other party called police to have him arrested. Intervention one. The cops say, work it out for yourselves; you’d have to go to court to sort it out; we can’t sort it out for you. Forty-five minutes later, they have to come out there again, this time after the party of the first part (the one who changed the padlock) took the padlock off, and suddenly the party of the second part rushed up to him, took the padlock away, and then tried to move the boat out. Failing which, he started taking out the outboard motor and tackle. Now the cops say, don’t make us come back, or we will jail someone. Next morning: they get a call to that same scene, only now the dispatcher uses the code for “disturbing the peace”! They find the two men rolling on the garage floor, struggling with might and main. Each man charges the other with a felony (break-in v. assault-and-battery). The cops arrest both, but cannot hold them after each man offers to withdraw his charges if the other man will.

      And that is when the lead patrolman says:

      If you punished everybody who was going to do something, you’d have half the country in jail.

      That evening the wife of the party of the second part calls police, saying something is wrong, but she doesn’t know what. When those same two cops arrive, they hear the wife crying out in anguish. She has found her husband, unconscious from a blow to the head. A blow, not a shot. After telling the distraught woman to call an ambulance, the lead patrolman goes to arrest the party of the first part for something far more serious: assault-with-intent. And in the final scene, the cops are at the station, where an assistant district attorney informs them that the charged party is now facing a homicide charge. The story: No. 2 broke into No. 1’s garage again (that’s what had started the rolling-on-the-floor fight the cops broke up earlier on the fatal day). No. 1 caught him at it, No. 2 rushed at him with a boat hook, and No. 1 grabbed the nearest handy object, a fire extinguisher, and hit No. 2 over the head with it. What makes it not exactly self-defense is that No. 2 took three blows to the head, as the autopsy showed. No. 1’s excuse was that No. 2 had pushed him around once too often. So the lead cop says:

      Tell him he pushed back a little too hard.

      Before you protest that this is a work of fiction, I answer: not entirely. This particular program (programme?) carried this anti-disclaimer:

      The incidents depicted in this story are true. The names have been changed to protect the innocent.

      Meaning that this story came from an actual case.

      So what’s the moral of this narrative? For one thing: no guns. Ever. The two patrolmen never even draw their service revolvers in anger.

      And for another: the patrolmen ruefully accepted the maxim that, in a free society, you do not detain someone preventatively.

      But you would. And that’s why I said that you were dangerous.

      • Fergus Mason says:

        “One man, no matter how many guns he’s got, cannot annihilate a hundred people, each with one gun, and knowing how to use it.”

        Vassily Zaitsev, who killed 225 German soldiers (allegedly including the chief instructor of the Wehrmacht sniper school) in three months might have disagreed.

        In any case the key words here are “knowing how to use it.” As I have repeatedly stated, being able to use a weapon effectively in a confused situation at close quarters is not an easy skill to learn and I can guarantee that for every one of your armed vigilantes who had it, there would be a hundred who just sprayed panicked shots at anyone they thought was a threat.

      • TomBombadil says:

        And yes, I think arresting one person is a far better option than arresting (or shooting in your fantasy) one person after he’s killed a dozen people. How can you possibly justify 12 lives, in stead of 1 arrest. You can’t. That’s what makes you a terrible human being.

        “One man, no matter how many guns he’s got, cannot annihilate a hundred people, each with one gun, and knowing how to use it.”

        The point you consistently miss is that you a) aren’t going to have 100 people carrying around a gun and b) they will not be competent in its use. Not only that – element of surprise. In the time they’ve reacted, drawn their weapons, figured out where the shooter is, etc, he could have mowed down dozens with his automatic rifle. Just look at the Texas Tower shooter. he was able to shoot so many, because nobody knew at first where the shots were coming from.

        I should tell you – I’m ex military and have been in combat. I’ve seen how trained people react under fire, never mind civilians. That is why I reject your fantasy out of hand. You have no idea what you are talking about. And your scenario has no basis in reality. Sorry to break that to you, but it’s about time somebody told you you are speaking utter rubbish. The problem is, you refuse to acknowledge that.

        When last were you tested to see if you can actually use your shotgun, without spraying pellets all over the place and hitting innocent people? For that matter – how would your shotgun shop a shooter, without killing bystanders? Their blood would be on your hands. You would be arrested for second degree murder.

        Again, you seem to live in some weird fantasy world, where giving everybody a gun would automatically convert them into some sort of super-marksman. Maybe everybody should be conscripted into doing compulsory military training for – I dunno – 4 years. That way, unemployment goes down, and those who fail the marksman test and be used as cheap labour building roads and courthouses, to deal with all the wrongful death by shooting cases that will come up.

        Of course, given how Americans just love suing each other, you’d have to kill all the lawyers first.

        • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

          Your background explains much about your attitude, and the explanation looks worse and worse. This is why you want to take all the guns away from everyone except LEOs and active-duty military. What’re you going to do—re-up, or become a cop, so that you can take an active part in tyranny?

          When cops or soldiers display attitudes like yours, and see themselves above the civilians, they become tyrants.

          A soldier whose character is thus marked by every attitude and action that better becomes a tyrant, is not fit to guard a free people. Thomas Jefferson, paraphrase.

          • Fergus Mason says:

            “When cops or soldiers display attitudes like yours, and see themselves above the civilians, they become tyrants.”

            *sigh*

            No Terry. Neither Tom nor I are setting ourselves up as “better” than civilians; in fact if he’s out like I am we both are civilians. We are merely pointing out that civilians without proper CQB training are not competent to use firearms in combat, especially in a confused environment like a darkened cinema full of CS gas. Having a large number of armed people in that cinema could easily have pushed the death toll into three figures. The level of competence you seem to imagine all these armed citizens would display in neatly dropping the bad guy with a calmly aimed shot is, in reality, what would be expected from an SAS trooper – very, very high.

            “This is why you want to take all the guns away from everyone except LEOs and active-duty military.”

            Where did he say that?

          • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

            See the other comment I made: too many targets, any one of whom can shoot while he tries to shoot another one.

            Now maybe you aren’t setting yourself up to be better than a civilian. But he did. And let me make my definition clear: veteran and civilian are not the same. Especially considering the attitude that “Tom Bombadil” expressed and expresses.

        • Fergus Mason says:

          “In the time they’ve reacted, drawn their weapons, figured out where the shooter is, etc, he could have mowed down dozens with his automatic rifle.”

          Not to mention that the shooter is likely to pay special attention to anyone who’s scrabbling inside his jacket for a pistol and, what with having his own weapon already in his hands, is probably going to come off best.

          • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

            Trouble is, he’ll suddenly have too many targets to shoot at. He shoots one, and someone else across the room draws and fires.

          • Fergus Mason says:

            “and someone else across the room draws and fires.”

            Who at? How accurately? And how many confused people will in turn fire at him?

            Terry, you now have two combat veterans telling you that this is a bad idea. What experience of close-quarter battle are you drawing on when you disagree with us?

          • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

            Perhaps I have none. But I’m trying to defend my freedom against at least one person here who doesn’t consider me worthy of it.

          • Fergus Mason says:

            “Perhaps I have none.”

            Clearly, or you wouldn’t think that having a cinema full of frightened, confused people blazing away in the dark was a good idea.

  7. TomBombadil says:

    By the way, you like to talk about force and how precious the Second Amendment is and the Constitution and the founding fathers, etc, etc.

    Well, here’s a quote from Thomas Jefferson:

    “Every constitution, then, and every law, naturally expires at the end of nineteen years. If it be enforced longer, it is an act of force, and not of right.”

    So it seems that you demanding your SA rights, is actually an act of force, not a right. Because I’m sure the SA hasn’t been reviewed for a lot more than 19 years.

    • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

      Again the laboratory specimen shows how he twists the words of the Framers. Jefferson suggested that the whole Constitution ought to come up for review every nineteen years. But he would never agree with your notion that the Second Amendment expires. Rights come from God and not any government. Chief among these is the right of self-defense.

  8. TomBombadil says:

    So… according to you, Jefferson wants the Constitution reviewed every 19 years, but never changed.

    “Rights come from God and not any government”

    Wrong. Unless you think God wrote the Constitution. Which He didn’t, men did. And they were Freemasons too.

    Also… and I think I need to maybe write this in capitals, so you actually take note:

    I HAVE NEVER SAID THAT PEOPLE’S GUNS SHOULD BE TAKEN AWAY FROM THEM.

    NEVER.

    WHAT I SAID IS THAT THERE NEEDS TO BE SOME REGISTRATION OF WHO IS BUYING GUNS AND THOSE PEOPLE NEED TO BE PROVEN TO BE COMPETENT BEFORE THEY CAN ACCESS A WEAPON.

    That is totally different from taking people’s guns away. It’s about personal responsibility. And if you continue to tout that line then I will once again accuse you of being a liar. And quite frankly, if you are unhappy about having your gun licensed, that tells me you have something to hide.

    So, so far in this debate you have shown that:
    * You have contempt for military personal and the police. In fact you have no respect for the police, and therefore you have no respect for law and order. The fact that they have any authority over you makes them tyrants. Be sure to tell them that, next time a cop pulls you over. Or will you just shoot the tyrant dead?
    * You believe you have a god-given right to carry a gun and therefore see yourself above the laws of the land, which include “thou shalt not kill”
    * You want a reactive instead of a proactive police force, so it’s fine if they show up after the murder, but not if they stop the murder.
    * You have no problem if innocent people die, because of trigger-happy untrained people opening fire
    * You want a nation where everybody is a storm trooper carrying a gun. Why not have everybody wear brown shirts while you’re at it.
    * You keep bleating about your rights, while ignoring the rights of the people who died, which includes “the right to life.”

    “Trouble is, he’ll suddenly have too many targets to shoot at. He shoots one, and someone else across the room draws and fires.”

    Sure, the shooter is shooting one person at a time, not firing randomly into the crowd.

    And that person who “draws and fires” hits and kills the pregnant woman who suddenly ran in front of him, to get away from the shooter. Also it won’t be “someone else” – it’ll be 20, 30, 40 people firing indiscriminately, not some Chinese movie where they attack on at a time. A recipe for disaster.

    That you can’t even begin to comprehend this troubles me.

    • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

      When you said that

      there needs to be some registration of who is buying guns and those people need to be proven to be competent before they can access a weapon

      you therefore said that at least some people’s guns should be taken away from them. Proven to be competent, you say. To whom? To you? To the Home Secretary? To the PM?

      That might be the way Her Majesty’s Government does things. It is not the sort of thing that a free people tolerate.

      To answer your overwrought summary of my character:

      • I pour contempt upon the contemptible. I pour contempt upon those soldiers and policemen who, not content with serving the public, seek to master them.
      • I believe that I have a God-given right to defend myself. Now you just said that Divine law commands that I lay down and die at the hands of another Jim Holmes. And you quoted Holy Writ wrong. The proper translation has always been,

        Thou shalt do no murder.

        Killing in self defense is not murder. Or maybe you think it is.

      • We already have a reactive, not a proactive, police force. The only way that a police force could ever be truly proactive would be if it had H. G. Wells’ Time Machine available to it, and could back-time a squad into the past to arrest someone before he began. Failing that, a proactive police force arrests someone for having a single thought it does not like. The day that it becomes proactive, every resident must look over his shoulder, not at his fellow residents, but at the police. On that day, society becomes a prison.
      • I dispute your assertion that hundreds of innocent people would die. Though I am not a lawyer, I can jolly well talk like one: Objection! Lack of foundation! Assumes facts not in evidence! And lately: Question has been asked and answered!
      • I want a nation-state in which storm troopers would never have a chance, because every citizen and lawful resident would have the means to defend himself against the same.
      • If either of us shows a lack of respect for the rights of those who died that day, it is you. They couldn’t defend themselves. Too bloody bad.

      And my answer to your last point is the same as I gave above: Objection, Your Honor. Lack of foundation. Assumes facts not in evidence, and ignores facts already admitted in evidence. (Such as that the shooter was wide-open, as he would have to be to make any of his shots count.)

      • Fergus Mason says:

        “Such as that the shooter was wide-open, as he would have to be to make any of his shots count.”

        Huh?!?’*?

        See Terry, this is the difference between a civilian and a veteran. You’ve never sat through the lessons entitled “Use of cover,” “Choosing a fire position” or “Locating the enemy,” and the multi-session marksmanship packages known as “Basic application of fire” and “Advanced application of fire.”

        It is not necessarily easy to locate where incoming fire is incoming from, and it is very easy to take up a fire position that lets you put down aimed fire while exposing very little of your body. You don’t understand this because you haven’t been trained, and you don’t know how people react to being shot at because you’ve never been shot at.

  9. TomBombadil says:

    “Proven to be competent, you say. To whom?”

    So in your world, dribbling idiots, alcoholics, criminals, etc, could all have access to guns. No checks, no balances, no tests, nothing.

    And you think this is a good thing? Because the minute one of them touched his gun, it would turn into the OK Coral.

    And you wonder why I question your sanity.

    • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

      The government has violated my trust in it once too often.

      The best defense against a criminal or a crazy man with a gun is: a non-criminal, sane man with a gun.

      And you still haven’t laid anything close to a foundation for your nightmare scenario.

      • Fergus Mason says:

        “The best defense against a criminal or a crazy man with a gun is: a non-criminal, sane man with a gun.”

        No. It’s a law that makes it more difficult for criminals and crazy people to get guns. Closing the loopholes that let firearms be sold privately and at gun shows without background checks might be a good start. I’d suggest that it may also be time to look at what legitimate uses exist for 100 round C-Mags and short-barrelled semiautomatic military carbines that justify their availability to civilians.

        If legislation fails then the best defence is a non-criminal, sane and – this is important – trained man with a gun. Untrained people, on the other hand, are just a dangerous liability who will achieve nothing except to massively increase the body count.

        • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

          Rushing to write a new law has been the common response of sovereigns everywhere, since Nimrod, Pharaoh Menes, Hammurabi, et al. How well does that really work? It mainly works for those who think that their subjects should not be let run loose, for they will surely harm themselves. It does not work out for the subjects themselves. The criminal or the maniac still gets whatever weapon will serve his twisted purpose. Any regime strong enough to stop that from happening, by its very nature cancels human freedom.

          The Second Amendment to the Constitution of the United States is quite plain. (And I don’t buy Justice Antonin Scalia’s interpretation of it, either. George Washington would probably clear his throat and want to give Scalia a good talking-to. Or if he didn’t, Thomas Jefferson certainly would.)

          Notice, as well, that I didn’t seek to abolish the courts. Liability would be part of the debate. And people would get that training, if only to satisfy themselves that they could be effective. Good training and practice are part of what too many people deride as “the gun culture.” Trouble is: a government strong enough to mandate such training is also powerful enough to forbid it, and to forbid the guns, too.

          • Fergus Mason says:

            “And people would get that training”

            Terry, being trained to the level you are talking about – being able to react effectively under fire in a confused situation – is a full-time job. It’s close quarter battle, which is a highly specialised skill. When I was trained for it the initial package was two weeks on the range, all day. Every day. Shooting constantly. I fired thousands of rounds of ammunition under expert supervision (by which I mean the SAS) and that was despite the fact that I was already a qualified skill at arms instructor myself. We then did refresher training at least once a week to maintain competence, because CQB among a civilian population is outside the skillset of most professional soldiers. To expect civilians to be able to do what you’re talking about is utterly unrealistic. What your scenario would lead to is panicking people blasting off poorly aimed rounds into the dark.

            It’s not that I don’t trust the people; not at all. I just know the skills required, and I know that most people will never even come close to developing them.

          • Fergus Mason says:

            “The Second Amendment to the Constitution of the United States is quite plain.”

            Yes, and it’s been carefully and thoroughly implemented – in Switzerland.

            A well-regulated militia is a list of people who have been trained to use the standard service rifle to an acceptable standard and who are available to be called on if required. Every sane and law-abiding Swiss male is trained to use a Sturmgewehr-90 rifle in combat (no, not CQB, just normal infantry combat) and can if he wishes buy it cheaply (modified to semi-auromatic only, of course) at the end of his military service. He is then encouraged to practice using government-subsidised ammunition on a proper range and can win prizes and prestige by taking part in service rifle competitions. Switzerland has a well-regulated militia.

            What you have is a disorganised rabble with inconsistent or no training and a collection of guns of dubious quality and utility, many of which are in non-standard calibres. Nobody knows who has what and where it is. This is emphatically not a well-regulated militia. In fact it’s not a militia at all. To expect it to stand up against a professional army is fantasy verging on delusion. The current state of affairs in the USA doesn’t protect Americans from enemies foreign and domestic; it doesn’t even protect you from yourselves, which is why your murder rates are SIX TIMES what they are in Germany.

          • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

            Let me make one thing clear that is not so clear from your comment. In Switzerland, owning a combat-grade firearm is actually an obligation. The Swiss system works out because the government has made a conscious decision to trust the people and work in partnership with them.

            The Swiss also don’t have too much trouble deciding on a level of taxation. Right now, they have many more people trying to get in than get out. And illegal immigration into Switzerland is not only pointless but impossible.

          • Fergus Mason says:

            “In Switzerland, owning a combat-grade firearm is actually an obligation.”

            In Switzerland it actually isn’t. All active members of the militia keep their service weapon at home, but when militia service ends at age 30 the weapon is returned unless you choose to keep it. Active militia members no longer keep ammunition at home since it was found that most domestic violence involving firearms was carried out with military weapons.

            “The Swiss system works out because the government has made a conscious decision to trust the people and work in partnership with them.”

            Um. In Switzerland anyone can buy (up to three) guns. Well, unless they’re under 18, foreign, mentally ill, have been convicted of a crime or cause “security concerns.” All they have to do is apply for, and be granted, a permit. All sales are registered and even private sales require a criminal background check and the retention of records by both parties for ten years. There are definite limits on the trust they place, which is why the rate of firearms-related murder in Switzerland is 0.56 per 100,000 people annually, against 2.97 in the USA.

  10. TomBombadil says:

    A-ha! And who decides that the man with the gun is ” non-criminal, sane?” And is he isn’t, then does he still get a gun?

    Terry, I have fought in a war. More of a guerrilla war than a conventional war. So when you say I haven’t laid out a foundation for my scenario, let me say that I have seen what high-velocity bullets do to people. I have seen how people who are supposedly trained react when coming under fire. I know how hard it can be to immediately identify and isolate the position from whence the firing is coming. I know the practicalities – and what would happen when you shift that to a confined, dark space, full of frightened, untrained people.

    I have personally killed at least three people in combat. Which is why I never want to touch a gun as long as I live.

    And another thing. When you go shopping – do you carry your shotgun on you? When you go to church, is it strapped to your thigh? I’m guessing no. Which means that even with your gun, you couldn’t do anything.

    And you cry about your freedoms. Trust me, a country where everybody has to carry a gun is not free.

    • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

      Who decides that? The people themselves. What you conveniently ignore, of course, is that any community of any size will have far more sane people than insane. The Law of Averages guarantees this. That’s why:

      An armed society is a polite society.

      • TomBombadil says:

        “that any community of any size will have far more sane people than insane”

        Again, your statement makes no sense. You seem to be saying that’s ok for the insane people in the community to kill people because there will be civilians who can take them down. After how many have already died?

        And on the subject of “conveniently ignoring” things – you still seem oblivious of the fact that your scenario just not work.

        So suddenly, not only are all your citizens marksmen, but they’re also psychiatrists now?

        When exactly will they be able to take time off work and family to sit on whatever boards are convened to decide if these people are fit? Or will they do what society always does – delegate the responsibility to those who can do it best?

        Yes, I know – you despise professionals… and yet you’ll get the qualified mechanic to look at your car, or plumber to clean your drain… but you’re happy for the unwashed masses to decide who gets to carry a lethal weapon.

        Do you seriously not see the flaw in that logic?

        “An armed society is a polite society.”

        Which explains why 68% of all murders in the US were firearm-related. Sounds very polite to me. Almost 11,500 people were gunned down. That’s 31 a day. Almost 2 an hour. In a country where people are allowed to carry forearms. Sound like a polite society to you?

        http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/homicide.htm

        • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

          Exactly!

          By your continued rants, you demonstrate that you simply do not trust the people. That is, you do not trust the people, as a collection of individual citizens and lawful residents. Instead you plump for some abstraction called “the people” as a collective, not a collection.

          I cite the most famous historical example: Coffeyville, Kansas, the day the Dalton Gang rode into town. They rode in. They didn’t ride out. The ordinary townsfolk did for that bloody crew.

          The Coffeyville Plan, if you want to call it that, can work again.

          Now about that auto mechanic: time was when a regular motorist could put his own car into proper working order. But that’s not the issue. The issue is the role of government in managing force, and how to stop the government from even thinking that it can abrogate individual rights. A government powerful enough to restrict the possession and use of firearms to a class of “professionals” that the government, and only the government, defines, is powerful enough to confiscate all weapons whenever that suits the government’s purpose.

          And to satisfy Fergus’ curiosity: you are the man whom I suspect of desiring to confiscate all weapons, except those issued to LEOs and on-duty military service members. You don’t have to say that out loud. Your attitude speaks volumes.

          • TomBombadil says:

            “Exactly?”

            11,500 being murdered is a polite society?

            As for your example, that was a very different time. People would be shot because they had 4 aces, or wouldn’t get off their homestead.

            Also, did the Daltons shoot first, or were they murdered in cold blood? The Daltons were also known criminals. It wasn’t as if they walked into the saloon and started shooting.

            So, no – once again your example does not back up your statement.

            The fact remains that you are quite happy to have insane people own firearms and only take action after they have committed harm.

            And for the umpteenth time in this conversation – really I get the impression you just ignore the bits that prove you wrong – I DO NOT want to confiscate ALL weapons. I merely want those weapons to be in capable hands and not any Tom, Dick and crazy untrained Harry. Do I have to draw pictures to get through your skull?

            Maybe you should go out and shoot somebody – you could claim self-defense – and see how it feels to shoot somebody, what the body feels like. To have blood and brains splashed on your face. Then you might see that it’s not so glamourous.

            You, on the other hand, are quite happy for any maniac to be armed. Well, what if that maniac comes to visit you, while you’re in your lounge, and your shotgun is in the den/bedroom/wherever (I doubt you’re the kind of person who keeps it in a gun safe)? You’d be dead before you got off your sofa. So what good would your shotgun be then?

            A simple check could have prevented the maniac from buying a gun and you’d still be alive. Ah well.

          • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

            And I say that I do not recognize your, or any other person’s, authority to decide who is competent and who is not.

            I say that, as regards my individual rights, and my exercise of them, I own or manage several businesses and one of them is None Of Your.

            I further maintain that on the day anyone grants, to you or anyone else, the authority to perform the competency assessments you demand, the right of the people to keep and bear arms is forfeit.

            There is no call for deciding a priori who may keep and bear arms and who may not. None.

          • Fergus Mason says:

            “Coffeyville, Kansas, the day the Dalton Gang rode into town. They rode in. They didn’t ride out. The ordinary townsfolk did for that bloody crew.”

            Yes. But even then, when the gang were concentrated in a known location and the townsfolk had time to get their weapons and prepare for a battle, there was a prolonged firefight with hundreds of rounds fired and just as many civilians – four – were killed as members of the gang. Now translate that to a bunch of armed people sitting in a cinema when suddenly gunfire erupts. What do you think’s going to happen then?

          • Fergus Mason says:

            “I do not recognize your, or any other person’s, authority to decide who is competent and who is not.”

            So would you let convicted criminals and those being treated for mental illnesses buy guns?

          • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

            A sentence of a court, as punishment for a crime, whereof the party involved shall have been duly convicted, is one thing.

            An a priori sanction, which amounts to a bill of attainder, is quite another. That’s what I object to.

          • Fergus Mason says:

            “An a priori sanction, which amounts to a bill of attainder, is quite another.”

            OK. Now, what about requiring people to demonstrate that they can handle a firearm safely and competently before letting them own one? Would that be OK?

          • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

            That’s the problem. That’s the a priori sanction. Who decides that? Who appoints anyone to judge that? Is that part of the core function of a sheriff? (At least a sheriff, in this country, would be an elected officer.)

          • Fergus Mason says:

            “Who decides that?”

            When it comes to judging whether or not someone is safe and competent in the use of firearms a military or police firearms instructor would seem the obvious choice. They’re able to make that sort of judgement.

  11. TomBombadil says:

    Actually, I’m not continuing this discussion. Your refusal to see reason and your continuing belief in your own weird scenario, against the advice of two combat veterans, clearly indicates that you are not interested in debate. You ignore facts, you throw around insults and accusations, and you cite ridiculous scenarios as fact. Not to mention that many of your comments smack of rank paranoia, such as your equating gun safety with gun confiscation and loss of freedom.

    Your contempt for the police and military is doubly worrying. I have to wonder if you aren’t a member of The Covenant, the Sword and the Arm of the Lord. I also have to wonder – given your denouncement of Waco, if you’re a supporter of Timothy McVie.

    Either way, I have better things to with my time than debate a bitter, old man who can’t see reason.

    • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

      Then don’t. If that’s your attitude, I will take that literally. This is the last comment of yours that I will approve.

  12. AlexM says:

    This comment thread has sure gotten off-topic. It seems the proper question that should be asked with regard to this treaty is whether there should be international collaboration on regulation of cross-border trafficking of firearms.

    Mr. Hurlbut, are you really suggesting that you do not think that the international community should be involved with preventing the flow of weapons into war-torn areas?

    Also, could you please direct me to the passage of the U.N. treaty that suggests in any way whatsoever that citizens of the United States will be forced to give up their already-existing rights to firearms?

    • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

      I already analyzed that treaty in an earlier article. I had a direct link to its text. If you’re too lazy to look it up for yourself, I don’t have time to run a high-school term-paper class.

      And above all, the international community has no business meddling in the affairs of a free people. If that gets in the way of some noble-sounding but impossible dream of encouraging the whole world to beat their swords into plowshares, that’s just too bad.

      • AlexM says:

        You had link to a text, but you didn’t actually cite anything directly from the treaty that agreed with your thesis. You just drew up hypothetical conclusions based on your interpretation of what you thought the entire document was about, and then criticized anyone who questioned you about specifics in the original document. Things must have changed drastically since the time you were in high school, because I remember having to actually cite specifics lines or passages in articles when writing a term paper.

        Do you also consider the Geneva Convention, the Antarctic Treaty, the Outer Space Treaty, and any other international agreement to be a violation on our rights as a free people? After all, who is the international community to say that we cant torture prisoners or put nuclear warheads in space?

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