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To the Public and Territorial Legislators,

My wife and youngest daughter, at this writing are in Salelologa, Savaii, Samoa. I am grateful the Samoa Police and matai seem to have calmed down the violence and curtailed further shootings there, which occurred this past weekend.

To avoid misuse of approved Territorial plantation/ fishing firearms, by unauthorized persons, I respectfully propose the following:

If you own a firearm, you must be required to secure it in a firearms cabinet, safe, or by trigger lock and traditional locked pusa; this should be mandated by the Territorial Fono and Samoa’s Parliament.

Very simply, Neil’s Ace Home Center, CBT Hardware, and Cost-U-Less should import firearms safes, trigger/chamber locks, and firearms cabinets (strong but cheaper than safes). I recall that a public organization might be able to pay a subsidy to reduce the price of firearms locks. If asked by the ASG or private sector, I will research this.

In my recent Cool Stuff column, I advocated for American Samoa’s Police to secure their duty firearms with proper, in vehicle, Sentina locking racks. No legitimate firearms holder should be immune.

Improper access to firearms leads to too many local and national tragedies.  

Local punks, untrained immature kids, and naughty fellows who steal unsecured firearms can cause huge heartbreak... unless the Fono takes the simple step to legislate firearms being secured.

Other than the associated legislative paperwork costs, this will not cost the ASG a dime.  If you legally own a firearm in the Territory, you should bear the cost of securing it. 

One of the requirements, we the founders of the Western Samoa Shooting Association had with Police Commissioner Tanielu Galevau (in 1989), was that we were required to have secure firearms storage.

The wisdom and experience of American Samoa’s retired Veterans could be put to good use should Police Commissioner Le’i Sonny Thompson and/ or the DOE envision a proactive firearm program to educate youth.

Peace to Savai’i and continued peace in the Territory.


Barry Markowitz

Hawaii & Tulaele, Samoa