The National Rifle Association (NRA), an American pro-gun lobby group, targeted Australia’s gun laws by posting a video comprising information drawn from old Australian newspapers on their official Youtube site. The NRA pointed out that similar laws in America would mean “bans and confiscation.”
The video was posted on the official Youtube page of the NRA and featured snippets of interviews and speeches by US President Barack Obama and Democrat Presidential candidate Hilary Clinton. The ABC reported that the video also showed old newspaper advertisements, dating back to the 1990s when the John Howard government ordered the gun buyback scheme following the deadly Port Arthur massacre. The massacre took 35 lives while 23 others suffered grave injuries after Martin Bryant opened fire.
After the incident, the government banned shotguns and semi-automatic rifles. Additionally, more than 600,000 were destroyed by the government under its gun buyback scheme.
The nearly two-minute video flashed a warning message that said, “Here’s what President Obama and Hilary Clinton don’t want you to know what they’re talking about when they’re talking about Australia.”
The video, complete with a dramatic soundtrack, even highlighted excerpts from old newspapers that encouraged Australians to surrender their illegally possessed guns without being penalised.
One of the highlighted phrases of a newspaper ad read, “If you own a gun which you keep to protect yourself, your family or your property, you must dispose of it legally. Personal and property protection are no longer considered acceptable reasons to possess any type of firearm.”
The video ended with a message saying, “When you’re talking about Australia, you’re talking about bans and confiscations.”
On Youtube, it amassed more than 21,000 views with varying comments. While few showed support for the Australian gun laws saying its sensible and saved many lives, others described it as disturbing.
“When they talk about Australia, they’re talking about thousands of lives saved over 2 decades in a nation of just 23 million,” one of the comments on the video read. “Imagine how many lives would be saved in the US by sensible gun laws.”
The Sydney Morning Herald reported that Australia’s gun control laws were targeted by the NRA since 2000. NSW Liberal Democrats senator David Leyonhjelm was featured in one of the videos posted by the NRA in November 2015, in which he flagged Australia as a “nation of victims” and praised the NRA.