This bit of Nation-approved activism was a lot of fun to write up because, as I mention later in the blog post, there is not much in the way of organized progressive support for improved gun control regulation.
UPDATE: This post was featured on Yahoo! New‘s Buzz.
In a joint press conference with Mexico’s president Philippe Calderon, President Obama recently threw his support behind the Inter-American Convention Against the Illicit Manufacturing of and Trafficking in Firearms, Ammunition, Explosives and other Related Items, a long-stalled treaty often referred to by its Spanish acronym CIFTA.
“As President Calderon and I discussed, I am urging the Senate in the United States to ratify an inter-American treaty known as CIFTA to curb small arms trafficking that is a source of so many of the weapons used in this drug war,” said President Obama in Mexico City on the eve of the Summit of the Americas.
Thirty of the thirty-five members of the Organization of American States have ratified CIFTA since it was agreed upon in 1997. In an interview with Reuters Jonathan Winer, a former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State who was the main negotiator of the treaty during the Clinton administration, said the treaty “is designed to help US law enforcement track abuses of firearms of criminals back to the last lawful sale so they can determine what went wrong. It is completely consistent with all US laws and does not ever impose a foreign law on a US person who has abided by US law.”
Although this treaty would do little to reform the domestic loopholes which allow countless guns onto our streets, CIFTA would at least signal to our allies in the OAS that we are serious about combating the drug violence that the US market both feeds and fuels.
Picture credit: Mike Licht (via Flickr)