As the National President of the Sporting Shooters’ Association of Australia and on behalf of our 120,000 members, I would like to take this opportunity to pass on our condolences to the families of those victims murdered at the Virginia Tech university. The needless deaths of these young students are all the more heartfelt when many of us are parents of similarly aged young adults.
I would, however, urge the Australian media and the extreme unaccountable gun prohibitionists and some small so-called ‘pro’ firearm groups who want to be heard, to show some restraint and respect for those grieving families.
In the words of Virginian Governor Tim Kaine, I have “nothing but loathing” for those that want to turn these murders into a political hobbyhorse, crusade or opportunity to promote themselves for their own gain. I condemn their opportunistic and selfish behaviour and question their motives.
SSAA National, as the leading Australian representative body of recreational sporting shooters, hunters and collectors, will not engage in questions over American firearm laws; however, we will be obliged to answer questions and educate the media on firearm ownership regulations as they exist in Australia.
As the facts behind this tragedy become clear, we may well issue a further statement, should it be of benefit to the community and help to educate the public about the positive aspects of recreational sports shooting and hunting.
SSAA National President