REPORT FROM SAF – BELLEVUE, WA – It took a hurricane to prevent it, but remarks originally scheduled to be delivered today at the United Nations by the Second Amendment Foundation still carry more clout than a storm, said SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb.
Her scheduled remarks are underscored by messages on social media about planned looting by thugs taking advantage of the storm. Those reports are currently sizzling across the Internet forums, and Versnel said they are eerily reminiscent of the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, when people were deliberately disarmed amid widespread looting and anarchy.
Versnel was prepared to say that, “The right of self-defense is a right that is particularly important to women.” This would have a significant bearing on future work to adopt an Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) or a Programme of Action (POA).
“We have a right to protect our bodies, to protect ourselves against assault and rape,” her statement says. “No one questions that violence against women is endemic. Mr. Chairman there are those who say women should rely on the police, the authorities, or even the UN for protection. Mr. Chairman, I reject this idea. In fact Mr. Chairman, this concept is part of the outmoded and disproved idea that women are somehow weaker and must rely on men for their protection.
“Most of the delegates here know that in the US there is extensive firearms ownership,” her statement continues. “What they do not know is that almost half of the handguns in the US are owned by women. They are used for self-defense by women. I fully endorse, as should every person in this room, the idea that women must have the means to defend themselves. Nothing that is before this Committee should affect a women’s right to defend herself.”
Versnel was set to remind the panel about the late Eleanor Roosevelt’s travels through the South to defend integration in 1958. She carried a .38-caliber revolver after being advised by the Secret Service against making the trip.
“No one supported the UN more than she did,” Versnel’s remarks note, “but at the same time she insisted on her right, as a woman and as a person, to have the means to defend herself.”