Would you surrender your assault rifles for free martial arts training?

SA gym offering free training for people who surrender assault weapons to police

(Bushmaster version of the Armalite AR-15)
(Bushmaster version of the Armalite AR-15)

SAN ANTONIO – A local martial-arts gym says it will offer free classes for those who voluntarily surrender their assault-style weapons to the San Antonio Police Department. 

The request comes just days after a 19-year-old gunman opened fire at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, killing at least 17 people. A dozen others were injured during the carnage at the South Florida high school. 

In a Facebook post shared on Thursday, the San Antonio gym said: “Anybody voluntarily surrendering an assault type weapon to San Antonio Police Department will get a full year of training at Mu Sool Won Martial Arts. A value (of) $1300.00.” 

And while the offer is being tied to SAPD, the Police Department told KSAT.com that it is not partnered with the business and that the community should know it’s the “business (that’s) offering a service if people voluntarily surrender their assault rifle.” 

An SAPD official said if citizens, however, wish to voluntarily surrender any unwanted weapon to the department, they can do so by calling the non-emergency number at 210-207-7273. 

“An officer will retrieve the weapon and file a report. The weapon will be placed in the SAPD Property Room as Personal Property and the citizen will have 90 days to pick up the weapon if they decide they want it returned. After 90 days the weapon is destroyed,” the official said. 

Since posting to social media, the martial-arts gym has received mixed reactions from users on Facebook.

“No thanks. I’ll keep my gun. I took martial arts and I loved it. But I’ll keep the gun as a last resort to defend myself and my family. I’ll avoid any confrontations but I’ll defend myself if I need to,” one user said.

“Thank you for making an effort and taking action....instead of just 'posting how you feel' and then why you're right and everyone else is wrong. #moreAction #lessTalking,” another Facebook user shared in the comments section. 

Despite the majority of comments criticizing the martial-arts business, the gym's owner said: “I am not against guns.” 

“To think that a gun is an answer is sad. A gun will not help you in a surprise attack. A gun will not help you if you are asleep. A gun will not help you when the doctor tells you that you have cancer,” the gym owner said in response to a comment.

Several calls made by KSAT.com to two separate phone numbers registered to the business went unanswered. 

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