The Mexican Excuse: Stealing Freedom

Attorney General Eric Holder and President Obama wish to reinstate the assault weapons ban, a ban of specific types of semi-automatic weapons imposed on Americans during the Clinton Administration. Oddly, the types of weapons that were forbidden were seldom used in the commission of crimes.  Despite President Obama’s campaign assertion that he is a supporter of the Second Amendment, the new administration is predictably going after the freedoms law abiding citizens are guaranteed in the constitution, using the excuse of preventing violence. This time the violence is in Mexico, and the excuse is that drug cartels are smuggling weapons from the US.

As President Obama indicated during the campaign, there are just a few gun-related changes that we would like to make, and among them would be to reinstitute the ban on the sale of assault weapons.

I think that will have a positive impact in Mexico, at a minimum.

Attorney General Eric Holder, to reporters on 25 Feb 2009

Holder’s words are revealing. You can be sure that “just a few gun-related changes”  will morph into a very convoluted and restricting ban that will go as far as it dare to take as much freedom as it can from law abiding citizens.  There is little evidence to support a ban.  What they cannot steal openly they will take piecemeal. Excuses are easily found.

The State Department issued an official travel warning on Feb. 20, 2009:

Some recent Mexican army and police confrontations with drug cartels have resembled small-unit combat, with cartels employing automatic weapons and grenades. Large firefights have taken place in many towns and cities across Mexico, but most recently in northern Mexico, including Tijuana, Chihuahua City and Ciudad Juarez.

While guns are sometimes fraudulently purchased or stolen and smuggled south, the cartels are not getting automatic weapons from the US.  Fully automatic M-16’s and AK-47’s (machine-guns) are against the law here.  The automatic weapons favored by the drug lords come from a more immediate sources, one is the Mexican army itself, which provides the foot soldiers to the cartels, fully trained and willing to fight for the high pay the cartels promise. Fully automatic Kalashnikovs, RPG’s and grenades come from other places, like Venezuela, who has recently received a production license for the new AK variant from Russia and has smuggled weapons to Mexican rebel groups in the past.  International arms smugglers are also contributing to the volatile mix.

Corruption in the Armed Forces of Mexico aids the cartels, with information and with weapons. The Mexican government is so riddled with officials on the take or cowed by the threat of violence they will never solve the problem without massive reforms.  Those reforms aren’t on the horizon. Mexican officials are fond of blaming their problems on the US, but in reality Mexico would have folded a long time ago were it not for the billions funneled from illegal workers into the Mexican economy every year. The illegally obtained guns that make their way south are not the problem, merely a symptom.

Securing our borders would go a long way toward curtailing smuggling in both directions. The refusal of the US government to take the issue seriously is the issue that should concern us.  The socialists now in charge will certainly not address the growing problem. By their logic, taking rights from American citizens is justified because a foreign country is incapable of policing itself.

Lance Fairchok

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