York, July 16, 2001
Single Action Shooting Society
Mr. President I want to thank you for the opportunity to speak to this
Conference. It is an honor
for my organization to be present here.
Mr. President, I am Gerald Baker, and I represent the Single Action
Shooting Society or as we like to call it SASS.
Basically, ours is a
shooting sport that uses antique weapons to compete in situations where the
targets and the style of shooting imitates the American Old West.
I am sure everybody here is familiar with the romance and stories of that
era. We have 40,000 members and are
one of the fastest growing shooting sports in the world.
Now why would an organization such as ours be making a statement at a
United Nations Conference such as this?
Mr. President, the answer is this. We are concerned about the issues this Conference is addressing, but at the same time we are also concerned that the Conference may not recognize nor appreciate the validity of shooting sports because they involve firearms. Numerous sports involve weapons or some kind of conflict. Fencing, archery, kendo, Karate, wrestling and boxing are just a few examples.
Mr. President the origins of these sports, including cowboy action
shooting, do not, in the least bit, diminish their validity.
They are integral parts of our cultures.
Our countries’ cultures and histories are more than just abstractions.
They are real, like food, language, manners and the wonderful various
sports that people participate in throughout the world.
Cowboy action shooting is just one of those sports.
Mr. President, we ask the Conference respect this and not demonize nor negatively categorize us. We are part of living history, part of a wonderful heritage. We are not part of the problem. Thank you Mr. President.