Safari Club International President Speaks Out About Gun Control

Discussion in 'News & Announcements' started by, Apr 11, 2018.


    Oct 1, 2007
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    In an open letter to all hunters, including SCI members, Safari Club International President Paul Babaz explained why he thinks it is important for hunters to be as involved in fighting draconian gun control measures as they are in defending the freedom to hunt.

    Dear fellow hunters,

    In the recent gun control debate, some hunters have said they think that hunting and the gun control debate should be separated so that they can embrace expansion of one while backing even tighter restrictions on the other.

    The effects of gun control on hunting are significant for reasons that not everyone considers.

    I grew up in South Louisiana and have been around firearms my entire life. I was part of the generation that had firearms in our vehicles at school, as we hunted before and after school.

    Firearm laws were less restrictive 30, 40, 50 years ago. Yet we didn’t see school shootings.

    During the Clinton years, a ban on “assault rifles” was put in place, yet it didn’t stop the school shooting in Columbine. In 2014, Alex Hribal stabbed 21 people at his high school with two kitchen knives, but there was no outcry to ban kitchen knives.

    Or some may recall that Charles Whitman used a Remington 700 bolt-action rifle, a pump rifle, an M1 carbine, a Luger, a revolver and another small semi-auto pistol to kill 14 people and wound 31 others after killing his mother and wife with a knife.

    I’m sorry if this seems like a rant, but the bottom line is that the same mentality that blames the firearm used in any violent act is the same mentality that wants to ban hunting regardless of the scientific evidence that sustainable use conservation via hunting benefits wildlife populations.

    The liberal media will use false information and blatant lies to direct their narrative. They group legal regulated hunting in the same category as poaching. They call hunters murderers, as these are terms that trigger emotion in a population that has little to no experience with hunting or sustainable use conservation, just as they use false “facts” and propaganda to trigger emotion in a population that has little to no experience with the AR-15 platform, which has been available since the early ‘60s and is widely used in target shooting disciplines, along with 30 round magazines.

    People are entitled to their own opinions, but I believe it is naive to think that passing any more firearms legislation is going to stop anyone from committing an act of violence.

    The anti-gun advocates won’t stop at AR-15s and 30-round magazines. It is just the first step toward firearms confiscation. Some may not agree that SCI should enter the fray to fight the anti-gun advocates, but again these are the exact same people who want to ban hunting.

    Source: Safari Club International (SCI)

  2. sierraone


    Oct 14, 2013
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    Member of:
    Dallas Safari Club, Safari Club Int.
    USA, RSA, Northwest and Limpopo Provinces
    Hi Paul,
    I read through your article twice so as to not miss anything. You said nothing new that hasn't been a part of the gun control debate for many many years. I have followed the debate for the most part since the 1970s when the focus was banning snub nose 38s, (Saturday night specials). It is my opinion and mine only that since your are the President of SCI, you should focus on increasing your numbers, increasing the protection of hunter rights and increase the development/training of the next upcoming generation of hunters. You have a full plate not to mention the problems of the past SCI has had, based on the comments on this forum. When your term at SCI expires, then you can move over to a gun rights organization! My opinion only.
    curtism1234 and mdwest like this.

  3. Stoat

    Stoat New Member

    Mar 14, 2018
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    Member of:
    NRA, SCI
    I am interested to know how many SCI members share sierraone's view that Mr. Babaz should focus on SCI and not give an opinion on gun rights. I have been a member of the NRA much longer then SCI. I feel that the two groups should be working together in the gun rights arena. The way I see it is the anti-gun activists will not stop with the AR platform. Next will be the M1 Garand because its a "weapon of war", a 30-30 Winchester, or the .404 Jeff in my safe because its just too powerful for a "civilian". Perhaps not.
    Britt Beck and CAustin like this.

  4. edward

    edward GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

    Feb 8, 2012
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    Member of:
    safari club,nra,d.s.c.
    south africa and zimbabwe.alaska and several lower 48 states.
    this is good but,your preaching to the choir,when will this be released to the media,public and all other means to inform the people your talking about,the public.

  5. Paul Babaz

    Paul Babaz AH Senior Member

    Aug 3, 2015
    Likes Received:
    Atlanta, Georgia
    Member of:
    RSA, Mozambique, Tanzania
    @sierraone @edward @Stoat Gentlemen, I have not had a lot of free time to get on here, but I received an email from a friend to reply to another thread and came across this thread as well. I will try to respond to all of you at once in an attempt to be efficient. I have been an NRA members since I was 12 or 13, so I have been a member longer then any other group. I understand Mr. Sierraone's comment in regards to focusing on SCI and hunter's rights, but I don't find the two to be mutually exclusive. We are all in the same boat as there is a tremendous amount of crossover in the organizations. Since my first meeting as SCI board member when I was a chapter President, I have asked why SCI wasn't doing more to partner with NRA, DSC, HSC, NWTF, RMEF, and all the other hunting organizations. The answer was simple, there were still a lot of board members who viewed the other groups as competition, but I never viewed it that way. Keep in mind this was almost 17 years ago, and a lot has changed within SCI and I believe we have a lot more work to do to become better. At any rate, when you look at the firearms manufacturers, S&W, Remington, Kimber, Sig, etc... they all compete at some point within there line of product offerings, BUT when it comes to fighting anti gun legislation, they all ban together and this is exactly how I think the hunting organizations should work together to combat anti-hunting legislation. It has taken a long time, but I made it a goal to try to bring together the major organizations to work together and I am proud to say that I have made some progress. SCI has hosted several meetings at our DC office with NRA, DSC, HSC, and WSF to work together on communications strategy so we can preach beyond the choir. SCI is not perfect and neither is any other group, but the fact is rather then fighting amongst ourselves we all need to work together. A big issue is so much misinformation about all the organizations and this is hard to combat because the rumor mill is quite efficient, so all I can do is continue to communicate the best that I can and it means repeating myself a lot but that's what it takes. I hope this answers your question/concern @sierraone

    In regards to @edward about preaching to the choir, this is challenging at the main stream media won't publish what we put out even though we provide them with the information. I have done serveral TV and radio interviews over the last few years, particularly when something controversial comes up as CNN is the first to contact SCI for an interview. The problem is that the interviews are always recorded and much of what I am trying to get out, ends up on the cutting room floor. This being said, we have specifically contacted FOX to try and get the word out, but they have not taken us up on our offer and have no interest, as I believe they feel we would be preaching the choir as well. In a nutshell, when we put out statements, it goes out to the outdoor media and mainstream media, but we can't control who will actually use it. We can't force the mainstream to share our message. I never realized how difficult it was to get a message outside of the choir until I was directly involved and have seen firsthand how the mainstream media manipulates the story. I've always heard, but to see if first had is really sobering. I hope this answers your question as well

    Lastly, I encourage all of you to become involved. I understand a lot of folks have opinions about SCI, NRA, DSC, etc. and it takes a lot more then one person to make change, even if that person is President as I still have to answer to a board of directors. I believe SCI has made great progress as we have acquired new leadership and board members in the last few years, but I encourage all of you to lend a hand as we need new thinking and new ideas to help affect change! Don't take this the wrong way, but I always tell folks it's easy to sit back and make comments, but it's a lot different to get involved to help make change. I wanted to make change which is why I got involved, and I encourage you all to do the same. Get involved in the local chapter, as each chapter president serves a a board member and we need folks who want to make a difference.

    Good hunting, Paul
    GL1960, edward and Shootist43 like this.

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