Gerald Nunziato Deserves None of Your Attention

In the Houston Chronicle Gerald Nunziato (former head of the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms' National Tracing Center) started off sounding reasonable, albeit with poor punctuation:

By shutting down shady dealers, police could stop many illegal gun sales, said Gerald Nunziato… Nunziato is now a partner in Crime Gun Solutions, a firm that consults with local law enforcement groups to try to prevent gun violence.
But the NRA's stance on limiting the weapons purchase information government agencies can obtain and share with one another impedes those crackdowns, Nunziato said.

Liberty versus security strikes again. Because the fanatical police state machinations of ATF administrations have given many law-abiding Americans pause they have lashed back at the organization by limiting its ability to pry into people's personal lives.

Is it simply a dispute over where to draw the line? Who are the real extremists here?

…former ATF officials say the NRA's policies actually protect criminal gun purchases because they are the bread and butter of the U.S. gun industry. Since a gun lasts about 100 years, most law-abiding gun owners buy only one or a few in their lifetime, Nunziato said.
Criminals, on the other hand, buy new firearms every few years, he said.
“If it wasn't for criminals, there wouldn't be a gun industry in this country,” Nunziato said, adding that the claims of the NRA and other gun-rights groups that they are protecting law-abiding citizens with their policies are false.
“The only people it's protecting are criminals.”

Ah. That clears it up. Nunziato is the extremist here. If I was Penn & Teller, I'd be using the famous title of their hit series on Showtime right now.

He doesn't understand that a large number of Americans are gun collectors. I have a large collection, but that is primarily because I like to shoot a variety of different kinds of guns and I even have a few that I bought solely so I could teach others how to use them.

He doesn't understand that so long as people are using them for lawful purposes it's none of his business that they buy one or a hundred.

People have long assumed that a goal of gun banners has been collect a list of firearms owners so they can more easily arrange the inevitable confiscation efforts later on. It's this kind of bluster from a overpaid ex-bureaucrat that firms up that belief. If an ATF official can be so clueless as to why lawful gun owners buy guns, and how many they may buy, why should we trust him about anything?

Alan Gottlieb of the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms (CCRKBA) had strong words for Nunziato:

CCRKBA Chairman Alan Gottlieb fired back: “If it wasn't for remarks like Nunziato's, perhaps law-abiding American gun owners would not consider ATF an adversarial agency when it comes to Second Amendment rights. His comment is nothing short of slanderous. I guess in his opinion, we're all criminals.”


“We sincerely hope that Nunziato's statements do not reflect the philosophy of the ATF today,” Gottlieb concluded. “This kind of anti-gun bigotry has no place in an agency that deals with firearms manufacturers, distributors, retailers and American gun owners on a daily basis.”

It's interesting that this kind of bigotry gets big press whenever the NRA has it's annual members' meeting. Why didn't the fact that the anti-gun juggernaut could only muster two protesters for the meeting make the news?

I guess if you're Gerald a former badge of office is enough to get you attention if you say things the mainstream media wants to hear. He's certainly beneath notice now.

Josh Poulson

Posted Wednesday, Apr 20 2005 04:06 PM

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