“The NRA is an accomplice of the drug cartels,” says Sergio Aguayo, president of Mexico’s the Alianza Civica (Civic Alliance) civil rights group"
by Chivis Martinez Borderland Beat
A Miami Herald article follows as posted on Borderland Beat fourm by "DD"
Mexico’s President Calderon is very fond of pointing north when attributing blame for Mexico’s ills, Norte, as in the United States. Going so far as to drag the US into his speech after the horrendous Monterrey Casino Royale attack
One point of contention is weapons.
For those a little slow in feeling his wrath, he recently unveiled a billboard created by using confiscated, crushed, weapons that read “NO MORE WEAPONS!”. To assure there was no mistaking who was intended to receive the message, with great fanfare it was planted at the south border pointing to the US city of El Paso Texas.
The massive billboard weighs more than three tons and was placed near the international bridge in Juarez , one of the world’s most dangerous cities.
Speaking in English Calderon said "Dear friends of the United States, Mexico needs your help to stop this terrible violence that we're suffering."
Mexican soldiers were used to construct the billboard. One would think the president of a country in which 60-100 thousand people have been killed in the drugwar in the past 4 years, and the nation's soldiers would surely have tasks of much greater importance to tackle.
Calderon proudly unveils his sign (Reuters Photos)
The action was silly and not behavior one most would deem presidential. Perhaps a billboard on the El Paso side should have been erected, reading “ NO MORE DRUGS!” made of crushed meth pipes and marijuana bongs. Mexican Soldier happily working on Calderon's SignAfter his meeting with President Obama this past week, Calderon had this to say “It’s been shown that when there is an excessive, quick availability of weapons in any given society, there is an increase in violence,” “The expiration of the assault weapons ban in the year 2004 coincided almost exactly with the beginning of the harshest period of violence we’ve ever seen.
Not so fast. The homicide rate in Mexico was 12 per 100K in 2008 when Calderon took office. It escalated when he took office not when the ban was lifted. In 2004 to 2008 it heald steady at 11-12, in 2009 it jumped to 15 per 100K and 18-19 by 2011.
His statement of availability of weapons being the cause of increasing violence, the facts do not bear out this opinion.
In the United States used are two sources to comply crime data, the FBI and each state collects information from law enforcement agencies. Criminologists use this data of serious crimes as an index.
Additionally independent sources compile data for their independent research of crime in nations. There are many sources such as the UN Crime Report, Nation Master, and for the US by state the Census Crime Report. Rates are calculated per 100K.
The fact is the US has a 4.8 national homicide rate. In a country with a population of over 311 Million people.
Mexico has a 18.0-19.00
Even with all of our weapons afforded to each citizen by the constitution, Mexico’s homicide rate dwarf’s that of the United States.
Another fact is the US has decreased crime, including homicide, by 70% in the past twenty years. Further, it has dropped in the past eight consecutive years. At its worse, in 1979 the homicide rate was 9.8.
Those who criticize Americans “love of weapons” are scratching their collective heads trying to find an explanation.
Most people are unaware of the fact that in article 10 of the Mexican Constitution Mexican citizens are given the right to bear arms. An application is sent to the sole gun store in Mexico, the Mexican Army. There is a caliber restriction.
Article 10: The inhabitants of the United Mexican States have a right to arms in their homes, for security and legitimate defense, with the exception of arms prohibited by federal law and those reserved for the exclusive use of the Army, Navy, Air Force and National Guard.
Federal law will determine the cases, conditions, requirements, and places in which the carrying of arms will be authorized to the inhabitants.
Citizens are restricted to:
Pistolas (handguns) of .380 Auto or .38 Special revolvers or smaller
Escopetas (shotguns) of 12 gauge or smaller, with barrels longer than 25 inches, and
Rifles (rifles) bolt action and semi-auto.Mexican Firearms Registration Card
Foreigners must apply for permission to take weapons into the country. Hunters need permission but there seems not to be an issue with obtaining permission.
So if not the weapons where does the blame lie?
Seriously, Mexico just does not get it. Perhaps it just does not have the desire to get it. It is not the guns that have caused the massive amounts of intentional homicides in Mexico.
It is the absence of a strong system of law and order.
It is the corruption that permeates every system of government, police, agencies, federal, state and municipalities.
It is the feeble prison and justice systems.
It is their ability to consider impoverished children as just so much attrition when denying them an education and employment possibilities, creating a enormous bottomless recruiting pool for cartels.
It is not the weapons trafficked in from the US at their north border or the many trafficked in on their unguarded south border.
Not to say we couldn’t or shouldn’t better, but honestly it simply is not the cause.
Citizens of Mexico say it is difficult, costly, and timely to have a gun application approved. By denying good, law abiding people arms only strengthens the criminals position of power and ability to terrorize.
Nor is blame the drug use in the US. As Mexican cartels diversify and find other products to peddle, drugs become less of factor in their "business", drugs are now at around 50-60% of their product line.
Cartels have greatly diversified.
They are heavy into the intellectual market of software, piracy of CDs, Movies, knock off toiletries, Alcohol, brand name goods, in addition to fuel theft, human trafficking, kidnapping and extortion. In addition, they are becoming a "user nation" with its fast growing drug problem.
Wouldn't it be fabulous if Calderon would get off his ban wagon and thank the US instead of blaming the nation for all of Mexico's ills? Better yet, it would be grand if he just once stated that to find fault, Mexican's simply need to look in the mirror? That citizens accepting stipends and gifts for their votes are a part of the problem, and admit that the deal Mexican leaders made to look the other way as traffickers schlepped drugs to American youth came back to bite them in the behind. Never dreaming those cartels would become so powerful and wealthy they could control and buy anything..... even people.
The first element of change is acknowledging what exists, and Mexico is a very long way from that.
The following is an article from the Miami Herald and Posted yesterday on Borderland Beat Forum by “DD” which motivated the writing of the above post. Though I don't totally disagree in its entirety, there were huge holes and shallow information. An example is the absence of the south border being wide open and weapons flow freely through, also the government armory under attacks and raided by cartels.
Commentary: NRA could help stop Mexico's gun violence
Andres Oppenheimer The Miami Herald
When we talk about the violence that has left nearly 50,000 dead in Mexico over the past five years, we usually focus on Mexico’s Sinaloa cartel, or the Juárez cartel, but it may be time to include the U.S. National Rifle Association cartel.
Granted, the 4.3 million-member NRA — the most powerful pro-gun rights lobbying group in Washington — is not in the drug trafficking business.
But judging from what Mexican President Felipe Calderón said earlier this week during a joint news conference with President Barack Obama in Washington, and from what U.S. gun control groups state, the NRA and other U.S. gun owners’ rights organizations have a huge tacit responsibility in the bloodshed that is taking place in Mexico.
The NRA and other gun lobby groups consistently block efforts to restrict the massive sale of high-power assault weapons across the border, which end up in the cartels’ hands, they say. In particular, Calderón cited the gun lobby-supported U.S. decision to lift a ban on assault weapons that expired in 2004. Calderón said he spent much of the time during his meeting with Obama on Monday urging him to seek a restoration of the ban.
“It’s been shown that when there is an excessive, quick availability of weapons in any given society, there is an increase in violence,” Calderón said at the joint news conference after their meeting. “The expiration of the assault weapons ban in the year 2004 coincided almost exactly with the beginning of the harshest period of violence we’ve ever seen.
“During my government, we have seized over 140,000 weapons in four years. And I think that the vast majority have been assault weapons, AK-57s, etc. And many, the vast majority of these weapons, were sold in gun shops in the United States,” Calderón said, adding that there are an estimated 8,000 gun shops along the U.S.-Mexico border.
Calderón did not mention the NRA by name, but leading Mexican activists are pointing at it as one of the main obstacles to reducing the mass killings in their country.
“The NRA is an accomplice of the drug cartels,” says Sergio Aguayo, president of Mexico’s the Alianza Civica (Civic Alliance) civil rights group, which is planning with other Mexican and U.S. groups a six-week caravan stretching from San Diego to Washington to raise awareness of the gun smuggling problem.
Jon Lowy, a senior official with the Brady Center in Washington, a U.S. gun control advocacy group, told me that “It’s clear that the outrageously weak U.S. gun laws have contributed greatly to the flow of guns to the drug cartels in Mexico.” He added, “Congress’ failure to renew the assault weapons ban has contributed to this, and so has the failure of Congress to require background checks at gun shows and other private gun sales.
“There is no reason why high volume bulk gun sales are allowed, so a trafficker working for a cartel can go to a gun store and buy 10, or 20 or 100 assault weapons in one purchase.”
The NRA rejects that most of Mexico’s drug cartel weapons are smuggled from the United States. It says that most of them are legally-imported weapons that are being sold by corrupt Mexican police and army officers to the drug cartels.
“There have been about 100,000 desertions from the Mexican military into the drug cartels over the past seven years, and one would have to be extremely naive to think that when those deserters leave their base, they are doing it empty-handed, without raiding the armory,” NRA spokesman Andrew Arulanandam told me.
“What needs to happen is that the Mexican government needs to crack down on the pervasive corruption that runs rampant within its own government, law enforcement, military and judicial circles,” he added.
Last year, the NRA sued the Obama administration for regulation requiring that gun merchants in U.S.-Mexico border states report bulk sales of assault weapons. It accused the administration of acting without congressional approval. Arulanandam said the measure is “ridiculous,” because “it tries to go after multibillion-dollar criminal enterprises like drug cartels by going after them with a paperwork violation.”
My opinion: The NRA and U.S. gun manufacturers have the right to defend the U.S. Constitution’s Second Amendment provision allowing Americans to keep and bear arms. But the Second Amendment doesn’t say that Americans have the right to buy bazookas, or AK-47s, or other military-style weapons, or to purchase dozens of them and sell them to whoever they want.
It’s time to stop this nonsense, which is causing so many deaths in Mexico, and also in the United States.http://www.borderlandbeat.com/2012/04/cartels-zetas-sinaloa-cdgnra.html#comment-form
By: Iron Sights
In: World News
Tags: Drugs, Cartels, USA, Mexico, Corruption, 2nd Amendment
Location: Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico (load item map)
Views: 7065 | Comments: 17 | Votes: 1 | Favorites: 0 | Shared: 0 | Updates: 0 | Times used in channels: 2
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