BELLEVUE, WA – A nationwide disruption of the 911 emergency services across parts of the country Thursday night serves as a reminder that the Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms has hardly outlived its usefulness, and is just as important today as when it was enshrined in the Constitution, the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms said today.

“Typically in a life-threatening emergency,” noted CCRKBA Chairman Alan Gottlieb, “a call for help means police or sheriff’s deputies may be several minutes to maybe an hour away. But when the 911 emergency services system crashes, the police won’t even answer the telephone, and that means that citizens are on their own.

“Firearms in the hands and homes of law-abiding citizens are the first line of defense against violent home invasions, as has been proven countless times over the years,” he continued. “Law-abiding armed citizens use firearms to defend themselves and others hundreds if not thousands of times a day, often without a shot being fired.

“Last year,” Gottlieb noted, “armed citizens fatally shot almost 300 attackers in life-threatening situations, according to the FBI Uniform Crime Report. The use of firearms for personal protection saves innocent lives, which is why more than 17 million citizens are licensed to carry, and that number is growing every day.

“We’re glad the Federal Communications Commission has launched an investigation into the cause of the 911 system’s disruption,” he added, “but this failure can serve as a reminder that in any emergency, help may not be coming immediately and we are all ultimately responsible for our own safety, and the safety of our families.

“This is why it is important for all citizens to question any legislation that hampers our ability to exercise our constitutional right to keep and bear arms,” Gottlieb concluded. “We cannot allow our self-defense rights to be nullified by legislation that would prevent honest citizens from having the necessary tools to defend our lives, and the lives of our loved ones. Having a gun that works is far better than having a telephone that doesn’t.”