BELLEVUE, WA – The Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms and Second Amendment Foundation today condemned today’s attack on a New Zealand mosque by a killer who reportedly declared in a manifesto that he wanted to “deepen strife in the United States over gun ownership and the Second Amendment.”

“Friday’s attack is an outrage against peaceful people everywhere,” declared CCRKBA Chairman Alan Gottlieb, who also founded SAF and serves as its executive vice president. “But rest assured, the acts of a madman halfway across the world and in a different hemisphere will not be allowed to provide this country’s gun prohibition lobby with yet another excuse to erode the cornerstone of our Bill of Rights.”

New Zealand has stricter firearms laws than the United States. There is no constitutional right to keep and bear arms. But there is strong firearms ownership. A report from the University of Sydney School of Public Health estimated that there were 1.5 million firearms in civilian hands in 2017.

“What happened Friday in Christchurch should remind us all that no nation, no community is immune from violent terrorism,” Gottlieb observed. “If anything, this despicable act underscores the importance of our right to keep and bear arms, and provides ample justification of our right to carry now exercised by millions of law-abiding citizens who choose not to be victims, whether at the hands of a thug or terrorist.”

The Associated Press reported that one person attending prayers at the second mosque returned fire, which may have saved lives, he said.

“There is no justification for acts of mass murder,” he stated. “Considering the events of today in New Zealand, there is no acceptable explanation for any effort, whether at the national, state or local level, to disarm our honest citizens, rendering them defenseless against this sort of insanity.

“We understand that in the aftermath of such a horrible event, there is a desire to ‘do something’,” Gottlieb noted. “But recent history in this country has repeatedly demonstrated that those interested only in the complete prohibition of private firearms ownership will exploit human emotion to further their anti-gun agenda in an attempt to eviscerate the Second Amendment, which is not negotiable.

“So long as SAF and CCRKBA can function,” he promised, “we will not allow the forces of hysteria to destroy our right to defend ourselves, our families and our communities from madmen, who ignore gun control laws as readily as they disregard our right to be left in peace.”