Juli Bednarzyk, Founder and President of Second Amendment Sisters, Inc. (SAS), is the designated recipient of the CCRKBA Gun Rights Defender of the Month Award for March.
 In nominating Ms. Bednarzyk for the Award, John Michael Snyder, CCRKBA Public Affairs Director, stated that, “as we who support the individual Second Amendment civil right to keep and bear arms are so sell aware, our movement is a genuine people’s movement. 
 “Our movement has many and varied aspects, comprised of many parts of our American social fabric.  The specific woman’s element is a most significant part of our overall movement.  After all, women comprise at least half of, and quite possibly more than half of, our voting-age population. 
 “It is absolutely necessary for the ultimate success of our overall movement that the feminine elements within it be heard, and be heard loud and clear and with an articulate, intelligent voice.
 “Juli Bednarzyk, who understands this necessity, had rendered and is rendering tremendous service to the right to keep and bear arms cause by founding and leading SAS.  She is most deserving of this Award.”
 An Illinois resident in her early ‘30s who actually was born in New Orleans, Juli is employed in the technology industry and is a member of Mensa.  She tells Point Blank that, prior to becoming involved with SAS, she remembers enjoying biking, political discussion, antiqueing, traveling and the outdoors.
 Juli has a BA degree from the University of Illinois in Chicago where she had a double major, political science and sociology, spending a lot of time studying Criminal Justice.  After that, she attended a program at DePaul University for her entrée into the world of the Internet.
 Juli calls herself an “accidental activist” and says her involvement in the right to keep and bear arms movement “is the first ‘real’ activism I’ve ever done.”
 She also tells Point Blank that she “did not grow up around guns” and indicates that she is a “former anti who changed her mind after looking into the facts.  Not big into shooting.  Never gone hunting.  Not big into guns.  Want to ensure that all people have the right to purchase and use firearms.  Not looking to get more women into the gun world per se, but more interested in having women consider themselves pro-rights.”
 Juli says that SAS came about when a group of women decided they had had enough: Enough of the distortion, enough of the misrepresentation, enough of the reproach from the anti-Second Amendment crowd.  Learning of the Million Mom March “was the last straw.”
 SAS states that in a letter sent out in September 1999, Sen. Robert Torricelli of New Jersey opined that laws that “can save even a few lives” are “worth undertaking,” implying that the greater good will be served if even a few deaths can be prevented.  He quoted a 1996 figure of approximately 34,000 “gun deaths” including 18,166 suicides, 14,037 homicides and 1,134 accidents in the United States for emphasis.
 What Torricelli and other anti-rights zealots repeatedly “forget” to mention, notes SAS, is the fact that “firearms also produce major societal benefits including 2.5 million defensive uses of firearms each year (five times as many as the number of crimes committed with the misuse of firearms), including 400,000 cases where the intended victims thought they were facing ‘almost certain death or a high possibility of death.’
 “The majority of defensive gun uses does not even involve the discharging of a weapon.  Simply displaying the firearm, or firing a warning shot into the ground, is often enough to ward off an attacker, with less than three percent of those instances involving the wounding or killing of an assailant.  By looking at the number of senseless deaths that guns prevent, it is obvious that the greater good is being served by having armed citizens.  Unfortunately, Torricelli would never accept firearms ownership or concealed carry of defensive arms, even though they save a lot more than a ‘few lives.’”
 Juli Bednarzyk says that, “if you are a woman who owns a gun, you have an equalizer.  Since most assailants will be bigger and stronger than you and you may also be outnumbered, and almost 90 percent of those assailants will not have a weapon of their own, you and your loved ones stand a much better chance of getting away unscathed if you are armed.  Isn’t that your right?”