Amnesty International is supposedly a human rights organization, but the group takes a dim view of the human right of self-defense. In fact, in the view of the folks at Amnesty International, it’s actually gun control that’s a human right, and the right to keep and bear arms is something that needs to be curtailed in the name of safety.
The group has joined a chorus of other voices on the Left, from former president Barack Obama to virtually every gun control group in the country, in trying to use the shootings in Georgia that left eight people dead to demand that Congress do “something” about guns. I want to quote the organization’s press release in full here. See if you notice anything in particular about their argument pushing new gun control laws.
Following reports indicating that shootings left eight people dead in the Atlanta area, most of them Asian-American and women, Amnesty International USA (AIUSA) released the following statement from Chief Inclusion & Strategic Innovation Officer Minjon Tholen:
“This morning, an entire community and nation are waking up traumatized because of yet another hate-fueled mass shooting. We are witnessing the results of what happens when racist and misogynistic ideologies collide in a society where there is also easy access to guns. This isn’t just trauma — it stands as a blatant assault of the human rights of women, of Asian-Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPI), and their allies.
“Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, we have heard politicians using xenophobic slurs against AAPI people and scapegoating them for the spread of the virus, with crimes against people of Asian descent increasing during this time. We have seen similar hate spread against women, and against Jewish, Muslim, Black, and immigrant communities, and people of color, time and time again leading to violence often perpetrated by white supremacists who have taken those words as marching orders.
“According to data from Stop AAPI Hate, 3,800 incidents of hate directed at Asian Americans were reported over the course of roughly a year during the pandemic- significantly higher than the prior year. Women were 2.3 times more likely than men to report hate incidents. Nationally, a 2019 study by Mother Jones found that in at least 22 mass shootings since 2011, the perpetrators specifically targeted women, had stalked or harassed women, or had a history of domestic violence.
“We demand that elected officials forcefully denounce violence against women and hate crimes against AAPI people, and that the perpetrator of the shootings will be held accountable. This incident also is a stark reminder of the need for the U.S. government and Congress in particular to take meaningful steps to curb the human rights crisis that is gun violence in this country and ensure those who shouldn’t possess weapons can’t access them.
“We can no longer accept the silence and inaction of lawmakers — guns should not be prioritized over the lives of people. Violence against women and hate against the AAPI community must stop immediately. We stand with the AAPI community, and with all those working to stop gender-based violence, and call upon our leaders to join us in the fight to pass meaningful legislation to end the cycle of gun violence.”
I do believe that attacks on the Asian American community are increasing, and in fact I’ll be talking about that very thing with Chris Cheng on today’s Bearing Arms’ Cam & Co. I do find it odd, however, that Amnesty International says that the government needs to take “meaningful steps to curb the human rights crisis that is gun violence” without actually saying what they think those steps should be.
What “meaningful legislation” would have prevented this attack? Universal background checks? No, the suspect was legally eligible to buy a firearm. “Red flag” laws? There’s no indication at this point that any family or friends noticed anything wrong with the suspect, but even if they had, Georgia already has a civil commitment law on the books that could have been used (and would have been more effective than simply trying to take the suspect’s guns but leave him to his own devices).
After I posted the piece about Barack Obama using the shootings to call for gun control, my buddy Charlie Monsanto reached out to me on Twitter with a valid criticism. Rather than blaming the actions of the suspect on mental illness, there’s also the distinct possibility that this guy was just evil, and you don’t stop evil by disarming good people.
Amnesty International seems to think that it’s possible to strip hundreds of millions of Americans of their right to keep and bear arms without violating their human rights. I disagree. Self-defense is the most basic human right we have, and if we lose that right others will surely follow. Just look at the slaughter of protesters in Myanmar right now. The country has the kind of gun control laws that Amnesty International loves, but absolutely no freedom, especially since the military seized power in a coup last month.
Now the civilian government that was toppled by the military is calling for the right of self-defense to be established in the country. Amnesty International would apparently rather see a slaughter than individuals acting in self-defense, both here in the United States and in other countries around the world. I see things differently. I don’t believe that we can ban our way to safety, and any attempt to do so will inevitably impact the law-abiding far more than those with evil intent and murder on their minds.