Social Media Briefing:Myth: "You are four times more likely to have your gun used against you than to use it in self-defence" – Adele Kirsten and Claire Taylor, Gun Free South Africa

on 5 November 2020
by SafeCitizen

#SafeCitizen has researched this statement reportedly made by Gun Free South Africa on several occasions and determined it to be inherently untrue.

All law-abiding citizens should be concerned if this is the calibre of data that the anti-firearm lobby presents to our lawmakers and parliamentary portfolio committees. Any rational person will agree that it is especially important to be factual and accurate in the dissemination of information into the public space. This is even more so when it is directed at a targeted audience, in connection with issues that are used to influence the development of laws restricting the civil rights of South Africans.

#SafeCitizen's research team has evaluated and recorded the following facts about this statement:

  • (previously Gunservant) refuted this claim as early as September 2014, and noted that the statement is a significant distortion of what its 'source' actually said;
  • AfricaCheck refuted this claim again in 2019 and attributed the statement as being made by Gun Free South Africa;
  • The AfricaCheck investigation found that Gun Free SA attributed the claim to research by A. Altbeker;
  • Gun Free SA has since tried to distance itself from ever making this claim, declaring to The South African that AfricaCheck explored a different claim to that made by Gun Free South Africa;
  • Gun Free SA went on to say that the data is silent in this regard and that it does not claim your firearm is more likely to be taken from you and used against you;
  • Gun Free SA clarified that only claimed 'you are four times more likely to have your firearm stolen than to use it in self-defence';
  • Therefore, if Gun Free SA has made these claims as they are reported as doing, it logically follows they did so in full knowledge of the deceptiveness of the statement;
  • Gun Free SA’s clarification is moreover untrue. Please see the investigation by in this regard here:

#SafeCitizen is determined to expose untruths and bring you the facts. We call on any person or institution listed here to either disprove or formally acknowledge that misleading information (intentional or unintentional) has been placed in the public realm and been permitted to proliferate. We further call on these persons or institutions to publish corrections and retractions of this untrue information on their websites and on all forums where they published the misleading statement(s).

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