Joint Media Release by South African Gunowners’ Association (SAGA) & Gun Owners Of South Africa (GOSA) Regarding the 16 days of Activism for No Violence Against Women & Children.
South Africa -(AmmoLand.com)- It is unfortunate and very sad that in the 22nd year of a democratic and free constitutional dispensation, South Africa still has to declare a period of activism for no violence against women and children.
We deplore all acts of physical and psychological violence against all people, and in particular, all vulnerable people.
What we, however, find equally appalling, is that certain activists equate violence with firearms, especially the lawful possession thereof. Violence against vulnerable people is not a guns-issue, it is a social one where those who believe they are (and perhaps really are) stronger, physically or otherwise, are able to impose their wishes, demands, will, desires and ideas on the weaker.
Firearms, sharp instruments, household utensils and physical force are the tools that these cowards use to induce fear in others and to harm others.
Often the use of firearms is emphasized, but, make no mistake, many more acts of violence take place using other instruments and without making the headlines.
Accordingly, the impression is created that firearms are the problem whereas there are various reasons, one of the most significant being a culture of civil disobedience and lawlessness that still exists. Government is quick to call for stricter regulation of private firearm ownership, but, apart from having criminalized the unlawful possession and use of firearms, has not introduced any innovative ideas to disarm the criminals. It also steers clear of our observation that there must be various sources for the illicit pool of firearms, not just those stolen from licensed firearm owners. The police persist in not distinguishing between firearms stolen or lost because of the negligence of their owners and firearms that are stolen during armed and violent robberies, house and business burglaries, forced gaining of access to safes, etc.
Firearms smuggling from neighbouring states and the existence of pre-1994 arms caches are also well-established sources of illicit firearms.
SAGA and GOSA have empathy with all victims of violence and we reiterate our staunch opposition to the unlawful use of force to resolve disputes. However, this stance also reinforces all law-abiding citizens’ right to defend themselves against unlawful violence and, if they so desire and are competent and responsible, to possess the necessary tools with which to defend themselves. A handgun in the hands of a competent and responsible person still remains the most effective means of surviving a serious and violent attack, much more so than a domestic violence court interdict and the police.
SAGA and GOSA both stand for the freedom of the law-abiding citizen to possess and use firearms responsibly, lawfully and safely.
About South African Gunowners’ Association:
The South African Gunowners’ Association (SAGA) is a non-profit, non-discriminatory organization, whose sole purpose is to represent the interests of all people who embrace the principles of safe and responsible ownership and usage of firearms for sport, recreation, hunting and self-defence.
For more information, visit:www.saga.org.za.