GOA on Traver Nomination

Gun Owners of America has weighed in on the nomination of Andrew Traver to head the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives. I am a bit surprised that they waited so long to issue a statement given that the NRA and the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms issued strong statements within a few days of the nomination.

From GOA:

Obama Nominates Rabid Anti-gunner to Head the ATF
— Ask your Senators to Support a Filibuster

Monday, November 29, 2010

It was not a good sign that Barack Obama kept his nominee to head the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives a secret until after the midterm election –- and then quickly announced that anti-gun zealot Andrew F. Traver would be named to fill the slot.

After being blasted before November 2’s election by the liberal New York Times for failing to beef up the ATF by appointing a director –- for fear of the wrath of the “gun lobby” -– Obama gets right past the election and, presto chango, a nominee appears. How ’bout that?

And not just any nominee.

As special agent in charge of Chicago’s ATF field division, Traver had taken the lead in calling for a ban on semiautomatic firearms.

And Chicago, of course, has been the epicenter of anti-gun government activism. It is not surprising that Traver has also been active in the virulently anti-gun International Association of Chiefs of Police, which has worked to empower Handgun Control-type activists and has commissioned panels to:

* support one-gun-a-month and lock-up-your-safety laws, as well as “ballistic fingerprinting” files on all firearms;

* espouse an “effective” ban on .50-caliber firearms, and a redefinition of “armor-piercing” ammunition that could effectively ban handgun use;

* mandate gun-destruction policies for law enforcement and enhanced funding to go after guns;

* prohibit all private gun sales and make “prohibited persons” out of a much wider variety of persons committing simple misdemeanors;

* back a repeal of the Tiahrt amendment; and,

* allow federal health and safety oversight of the firearms industry (through agencies such as the Centers for Disease Control, the Consumer Product Safety Commission and the Food and Drug Administration).

It is disconcerting that ANY organization espousing these views would be taken seriously. That an activist in such an organization would be put in charge of the ATF is truly troubling.

On their website, they have a pre-written letter that you can use to request your state’s Senators oppose the Traver nomination. It can be sent as an email directly from their site.

While good in signaling raw numbers opposed to the nomination, I don’t think that is the most effective means of getting the message across. A personal letter hand delivered to the local office would have much more impact in my opinion. I think if you include with that letter a folder containing the statements of the NRA, CCRKBA, and GOA along with other information on Traver to bolster your argument it would add to the impact.

In the pre-9/11 and pre-anthrax days, a handwritten letter sent to the Senator’s office would have sufficed. With all the mail, email, and faxes that they receive daily, I think even that gets lost in the shuffle. It is much harder to ignore a person standing in front of your staff than it is one letter or email out of thousands received in a day.


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