By Wayne LaPierre, Executive Vice President
Barack Obama, the candidate who promised Americans in 2008 that “I will not take your guns away,” now, as President of the United States in 2013, has embraced the universal firearm confiscation of Australia and England—schemes that saw the destruction of hundreds of thousands of registered, legal firearms that had been outlawed and taken under threat of force from licensed gun owners by their governments.
Obama revealed his gun control endgame in a Sept. 22, 2013, political speech at a solemn memorial for the 12 Washington Navy Yard victims murdered by a deranged killer on Sept. 16, 2013.
Obama coldly used the madness of a delusional lone mass-murderer to claim that the rampage “ought to lead to some sort of transformation … it ought to obsess us.”
In the same breath, Obama defined his personal “obsession” and his notion of “transformation” for ordinary American gun owners:
“That’s what happened in other countries when they experienced similar tragedies. In the United Kingdom, in Australia … they mobilized and they changed.”
The Washington Post praised Obama’s demand for “transformation” to an Australia-style gun roundup and destruction as “commonsense.”
While the U.S. media either ignored or glossed over Obama’s embrace of the Aussie model for gun bans, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) on Sept. 23, 2013, led its coverage with this:
“The U.S. president, Barack Obama, says it’s time for America to follow the example of countries like Australia when it comes to gun control.”
With a Sept. 23, 2013, headline, “Obama hails Australian gun laws,” Sky News led its coverage with: “President Barack Obama has used Australia as a positive example of a country that tightened gun laws after a mass shooting.”
Virtually no U.S. media outlet was honest enough to describe what actually happened to our formerly free English speaking cousins as a direct result of mass murders committed by lone, criminally insane killers.
In reaction to the murder of 16 people in Hungerford in 1987 by an insane killer, registered semi-automatic rifles in Great Britain were banned and confiscated from all licensed owners. Then, following the 1996 massacre of school children in Dunblane, Scotland, most registered handguns were declared contraband, taken and destroyed. Owners of .22-cal. handguns had been allowed to keep them at government approved facilities, but they, too, were outlawed, collected and destroyed—because of the actions of two criminal lunatics.
On the heels of the Dunblane killings in 1996, an insane murderer in Australia, who obtained one of his semi-automatic rifles by killing its owner and his wife, slaughtered 34 people in Port Arthur, Tasmania.
As a result, all semi-automatic rifles, including .22s, and all semi-automatic shotguns and pump shotguns were banned, and licensed owners were required to turn them in for destruction under what the government, as in England, called a “buyback.”
In reality, the “buybacks” were theft—made possible by using pre-existing government lists of licensed owners and registered guns.
All of this explains Obama’s obsessive call for “universal background checks”—a scheme easily morphed into gun-owner registration.
The president’s notion of crafting a U.S. version of the Australian/British tyranny has not come in a vacuum. It has been preceded by a spate of articles designed to introduce the public to the concept.
Key to this propaganda push was a Jan. 16, 2013, New York Times op-ed by former Aussie Prime Minister John Howard, titled “I Went After Guns. Obama Can, Too.” In it, Howard touted his politics of forcibly disarming licensed law-abiding Australians:
“City dwellers supported our plan, but there was strong resistance by some in rural Australia. Many farmers resented being told to surrender weapons they had used safely all of their lives. Penalizing decent, law-abiding citizens because of the criminal behavior of others seemed unfair. Many of them … felt bewildered and betrayed by these new laws. I understood their misgivings. Yet I felt there was no alternative.”
And Howard boasted, “Almost 700,000 guns were bought back and destroyed—the equivalent of 40 million guns in the United States.” (Emphasis added)
Understand that Australia is perhaps the most urbanized nation in the world where coastal, non-gun-owning city dwellers dwarf rural populations who have a long firearm tradition.
But today it is those urbanites in places like Sydney who are reaping the real consequences of John Howard’s multiple “buybacks.” Criminal violence with illegal firearms in those urban centers is soaring.
Try these headlines from one month before the U.S. Washington Navy Yard murders:
From the Ballina Shire Advocate, Aug. 21, 2013, “New plan unveiled to tackle out-of-control gun violence.”
Or this from News Limited Network Aug. 2, 2013, “Is Australia staring down the barrel of a gun crisis?”
“There is a gun battle going on in Australia. As bike gang members and drug dealers gun each other down on a regular basis, sending fear through the community, authorities seem to be fighting a losing battle to keep firearms out of their hands.”
As for mass murders, Howard, who once summed up his optic on freedom saying, “I hate guns,” wrote in his New York Times op-ed:
“The fundamental problem was the ready availability of high-powered weapons, which enabled people to convert their murderous impulses into mass killing.”
“People?” Ordinary citizens?
The confiscatory bans were a hysterical response to the insanity of one person. One crazy person in Port Arthur. One crazy person in Hungerford. One crazy person in Dunblane. One crazy person in Aurora, Colo. One crazy person in Sandy Hook, Conn. And one crazy person at the Washington Navy Yard.
All of these killers had one thing in common: all were totally and recognizably deranged. And nobody reacted to their insanity. Nobody interceded.
In the case of the Navy Yard killer—a contract IT worker—police had warned the Navy he was a violent schizophrenic hearing voices and tormented by “extremely low frequency electromagnetic waves.” And he had a record of firearm abuse. Yet, he held a “secret” security clearance and carried a valid Navy ID that allowed him free access to military installations.
And, as I said on “Meet the Press,” equally important in the Navy Yard killings was the lax base security in what amounts to a gun-free zone: “That can’t stand. We need to look at letting men and women who know firearms and are trained in them to do what they do best, which is protect and survive.”
Yet Obama and his gun-ban cabal demand that millions of sane, ordinary peaceable Americans—you and me—pay the price for lone sociopaths with the loss of our rights.
USA Today reported that Obama plans to bring his Australia/UK “transformation” and “obsession” to bear on the 2014 congressional elections. All I can say is “Bring it on, because Americans—by the millions upon millions—will fight to defend our freedom.”