View Full Version : Wayne La Pierre's speech to the UN

07-14-2011, 9:18 PM
I received an email from the NRA today, it contained the speech that La Pierre gave to the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty Preparatory Committee:

Statement of the National Rifle Association of America

Mr. Chairman, thank you for this brief opportunity to address the committee. I am Wayne LaPierre and for 20 years now, I have served as Executive Vice President of the National Rifle Association of America.

The NRA was founded in 1871, and ever since has staunchly defended the rights of its 4 million members, America's 80 million law-abiding gun owners, and freedom-loving Americans throughout our country. In 1996, the NRA was recognized as an NGO of the United Nations and, ever since then, has defended the constitutional freedom of Americans in this arena. The NRA is the largest and most active firearms rights organization in the world and, although some members of this committee may not like what I have to say, I am proud to defend the tens of millions of lawful people NRA represents.

This present effort for an Arms Trade Treaty, or ATT, is now in its fifth year. We have closely monitored this process with increasing concern. We've reviewed the statements of the countries participating in these meetings. We've listened to other NGOs and read their numerous proposals and reports, as well as carefully examined the papers you have produced. We've watched, and read ... listened and monitored. Now, we must speak out.

The Right to Keep and Bear Arms in defense of self, family and country is ultimately self-evident and is part of the Bill of Rights to the United States Constitution. Reduced to its core, it is about fundamental individual freedom, human worth, and self-destiny.

We reject the notion that American gun owners must accept any lesser amount of freedom in order to be accepted among the international community. Our Founding Fathers long ago rejected that notion and forged our great nation on the principle of freedom for the individual citizen - not for the government.

Mr. Chairman, those working on this treaty have asked us to trust them ... but they've proven to be unworthy of that trust.

We are told "Trust us; an ATT will not ban possession of any civilian firearms." Yet, the proposals and statements presented to date have argued exactly the opposite, and - perhaps most importantly - proposals to ban civilian firearms ownership have not been rejected.

We are told "Trust us; an ATT will not interfere with state domestic regulation of firearms." Yet, there are constant calls for exactly such measures.

We are told "Trust us; an ATT will only affect the illegal trade in firearms." But then we're told that in order to control the illegal trade, all states must control the legal firearms trade.

We are told, "Trust us; an ATT will not require registration of civilian firearms." Yet, there are numerous calls for record-keeping, and firearms tracking from production to eventual destruction. That's nothing more than gun registration by a different name.

We are told, "Trust us; an ATT will not create a new international bureaucracy." Well, that's exactly what is now being proposed -- with a tongue-in-cheek assurance that it will just be a SMALL bureaucracy.

We are told, "Trust us; an ATT will not interfere with the lawful international commerce in civilian firearms." But a manufacturer of civilian shotguns would have to comply with the same regulatory process as a manufacturer of military attack helicopters.

We are told, "Trust us; an ATT will not interfere with a hunter or sport shooter travelling internationally with firearms." However, he would have to get a so-called "transit permit" merely to change airports for a connecting flight.

Mr. Chairman, our list of objections extends far beyond the proposals I just mentioned.

Unfortunately, my limited time today prevents me from providing greater detail on each of our objections. I can assure you, however, that each is based on American law, as well as the fundamental rights guaranteed by the United States Constitution.

It is regrettable that proposals affecting civilian firearms ownership are woven throughout the proposed ATT. That being the case, however, there is only one solution to this problem: the complete removal of civilian firearms from the scope of any ATT. I will repeat that point as it is critical and not subject to negotiation - civilian firearms must not be part of any ATT. On this there can be no compromise, as American gun owners will never surrender their Second Amendment freedom.

It is also regrettable to find such intense focus on record-keeping, oversight, inspections, supervision, tracking, tracing, surveillance, marking, documentation, verification, paper trails and data banks, new global agencies and data centers. Nowhere do we find a thought about respecting anyone's right of self-defense, privacy, property, due process, or observing personal freedoms of any kind.

Mr. Chairman, I'd be remiss if I didn't also discuss the politics of an ATT. For the United States to be a party to an ATT, it must be ratified by a two-thirds vote of the U.S. Senate. Some do not realize that under the U.S. Constitution, the ultimate treaty power is not the President's power to negotiate and sign treaties; it is the Senate's power to approve them.

To that end, it's important for the Preparatory Committee to understand that the proposed ATT is already strongly opposed in the Senate - the very body that must approve it by a two-thirds majority. There is a letter addressed to President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton that is currently being circulated for the signatures of Senators who oppose the ATT. Once complete, this letter will demonstrate that the proposed ATT will not pass the U.S. Senate.

So there is extremely strong resistance to the ATT in the United States, even before the treaty is tabled. We are not aware of any precedent for this - rejecting a proposed treaty before it's even submitted for consideration - but it speaks to the level of opposition. The proposed ATT has become more than just controversial, as the Internet is awash with articles and messages calling for its rejection. And those messages are all based on the same objection - infringement on the constitutional freedom of American gun owners.

The cornerstone of our freedom is the Second Amendment. Neither the United Nations, nor any other foreign influence, has the authority to meddle with the freedoms guaranteed by our Bill of Rights, endowed by our Creator, and due to all humankind.

Therefore, the NRA will fight with all of its strength to oppose any ATT that includes civilian firearms within its scope.

Thank you.


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Shotgun Man
07-14-2011, 9:26 PM
Nice speech.

07-14-2011, 9:30 PM
great speech

07-14-2011, 9:36 PM
I really want video of this one!


Dreaded Claymore
07-14-2011, 9:41 PM
Very good. Very, very well-written. I do not doubt that it was also well-delivered. I wonder if the treaty committee will change anything after hearing this.

I really want video of this one!

You and me both, brother!

07-14-2011, 9:49 PM
Wonderful speech!

Our Founding Fathers would be be proud.. Wayne is a true American.

07-14-2011, 9:50 PM
I want a video of this as well.

07-14-2011, 10:19 PM
1) How I wish US Senators were still representatives of the state governments! All that Commerce Clause garbage would never have seen the light of day because, as state gov't reps, Senators would have grilled FDR's fed cts nominees and not approved them if they didn't respect the 10th A. Here, they'd view the ATT from the perspective of defending their states' authority. Some are doing that anyway, but, IMO, if they were NOT popularly elected, that perspective would be inherent in their office.

2) WLP kept saying don't touch "civilian arms." Are FA/SMGs considered "civilian arms"? If not, doesn't the 2nd A protect arms suitable for militia members, not just "civilians" (i.e., "sporting purposes" + self-defense)?

07-14-2011, 10:20 PM
Wayne knocked it out of the park.

I've had the honor of meeting/chatting with him a couple of times. There's a good head on those shoulders, and he's pretty much 24/7 doing gun stuff - he's in no way a figurehead type that some other national nonprofit groups typically have.

07-14-2011, 10:27 PM
Thank you for posting.

07-14-2011, 10:29 PM
Awesome, I would love to see that vid too...so, can we withdraw from the UN and kick them out of Manhattan now?

07-14-2011, 10:40 PM
I read about this earlier, made me proud to be a life member.

07-14-2011, 10:52 PM
Thank you Wayne :notworthy:

07-14-2011, 11:18 PM
Kind of reminds me of that scene in "Catch me if you Can".

Wayne: "Knock Knock."

UN: "Who's there?"

Wayne: "Go @#$! Yourself!"

07-14-2011, 11:55 PM
Concrete affirmation that my membership dues and donations are being well spent.

07-15-2011, 4:00 AM
Sweet speech. I couldn't have said it better myself. My donations at work!:cool2:

07-15-2011, 4:30 AM
Very well said.

I was surprised to learn that such a tiny percentage of gun owners are members of the NRA.

07-15-2011, 4:43 AM
I wonder if the treaty committee will change anything after hearing this.

I know that you know the answer to that already, but for any who wonder - no.

I almost wish that speech had not been made.

This may be used as an excuse to move the final negotiations to 2013. There's good and bad in that.

If final negotiations were done in 2012 then Obama would either have to fix the treaty to something reasonable or suffer politically in a year where he is going to be fighting for political survival. For that matter, even if he fixes the ATT in a manner that pleases me it will hurt him with his base. Either way it increases the probability that we get an Obama replacement who will be far more friendly to the RKBA.

Moving the final negotiations to 2013 will be a boon for Obama and greatly increase the probability that you get much of the ATT enacted by presidential fiat - and those fiats (EOs) endorsed by a SCOTUS which may get packed with anti-originalists by a second Obama administration.

Good speech, but maybe it should not have been given?

07-15-2011, 4:47 AM
I love these two bits:
not subject to negotiation
there can be no compromise

07-15-2011, 4:50 AM
Very well said.

I was surprised to learn that such a tiny percentage of gun owners are members of the NRA.


The percentage that follow the laws and politics and actually know what's going on is even smaller. Go to a range sometime and ask people what they know about Heller.

Mulay El Raisuli
07-15-2011, 7:17 AM
Great stuff!

The Raisuli

Write Winger
07-15-2011, 7:55 AM
Paladin, I too kept thinking whose definition of civilian arms is he using, and what does the UN think are civilian arms? There are purists like myself who believe/know that because we are a free people who comprise the government, then we ought all be equal under the law (ie, if it's good for the people it's good for the gov and vice versa). Free men ought have the same small arms as the military that free men comprise. And it used to be that way until 1986. Some say it's asking too much to go back to that kind of freedom, but if our Senate signs a treaty that codifies our civilian arms won't be touched, we may never get that freedom back.

07-15-2011, 10:00 AM
Wow what a fantastic speech. It's strange, we've all heard those words before. We here political rhetoric, infighting and cliches all the time about the 2nd amendment. But he managed to put those words in a way that was 100% significant. Perhaps it was his audience that made his words seem more significant... but that was great speech.

07-15-2011, 10:12 AM
The Bill of Rights was designed to ensure that the people had "Government Control".

Standing Armies were viewed as dangerous to liberty and belief is proven by looking at other countries and how their "standing armies" are used to control the people of their countries.

We were not supposed to have a "standing army", the citizen militia was supposed to be our prime force for national defense.

To say that our founding fathers totally blew off a national defense after just fighting a war would require drinking some serious "Kool Aid".

The UN is a "democracy" of nations compromised mainly of nations run by "military dictators" and "tyrants". Off course they want to restrict civilian access to arms.

People won't take up arms against a government unless they feel that is the only way they can survive.


07-15-2011, 6:36 PM
No compromise. If it does pass, we must refuse to comply with its directives, no matter what. The UN does not have juridstiction nor does any treaty supersede the Constitution, and compliance on our part would set a very bad precedent indeed.



07-15-2011, 8:57 PM
What the socialists "One World"-ers have used so well, and are trying to use again w/the ATT, is what the NRA used to win Shall Issue around the nation -- going after low hanging fruit first, then make the last hold outs appear like odd balls.

This is why we, in the US of A, MUST care about what happens re. the inalienable human right to Keep and Bear Arms in places like England, Australia, Canada, India, and the rest of the world.

Sure, I want the NRA to primarily focus on the US, but I also am glad they see that the life saving and freedom protecting influence of an individual RKBA must be defended against threats beyond our shores.

IMO, one of the best way to do that is to advocate the RKBA beyond our shores. CGNers who have family members, friends, or co-workers in or from other countries have a special opportunity to have an international impact to advance this inalienable human right by sharing our view of gun ownership w/those foreign nationals.

07-15-2011, 10:22 PM
Now if he would only come to California and make the same speech to some of our idiot lawmakers.

07-16-2011, 3:23 AM

07-16-2011, 7:24 AM
That was great. To bad no one at the un cares, and to bad it wont make a difference, good speech none the less.