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on the border line between the US and Mexico

Monday, April 30, 2018

Firearms Out of Control in Mexico: But Only for Criminals

Translated by Yaqui for Borderland Beat from: Zeta

   More than 28,000 arms have been secured in the last six years through exchange programs

By: Luis Carlos Sainz/Special Report
April 2018

While criminals carry weapons indiscriminately and commit robberies and wholesale murders, citizens are  barely able to exercise their constitutional right to possess a firearm at home. The current number of registered arms in the hands of private individuals is only 3, 153 in the entire country of Mexico. The Ministry of National Defense has only granted 68 such licenses of that type to 2016, but, in exchange programs during the sexennium, it has collected more than 93,000 weapons of war, mainly delivered by heads of households; another 28,000 weapons were secured during arrests.

Although during the current administration, various authorities in the country have secured more than 28,000 firearms in police and military actions, and more than 46,000 homicides have been committed with these types of instruments, the Ministry of National Defense (Sedena) granted the registration and license to carry firearms to 68 individuals during the last three years.

This was the result of the response to a request for transparency, which highlights that during 2016, 47 authorizations were granted to people to possess a weapon at home. The number of licenses decreased drastically to only 20 in 2017, and in the first months of the current year, it has only granted a permit.

In this way, the total registration of the number of individual licenses to carry firearms to citizens, valid by state, to date, is 3,153, of which just four are for individuals of the State of Baja California and three for inhabitants of Baja California Sur.

The states with the most legal weapons in the hands of citizens are:

* Mexico City, with 1,750
* Nuevo León, 598
* State of Mexico, 275
* Jalisco, 101
* Querétaro, 98                                         
* Durango 54
* Veracruz, 38
* Chihuahua, 30
* Yucatan, 30
* Guanajuato, 30

It is striking how in states where it is estimated that there is a lot of weapons, there are few registered weapons, such as the cases of Michoacán, with 28; Sonora, with one Tamaulipas, with three; and Zacatecas, with one.

In the country several movements have been created to put pressure on public policies to be implemented on the effects of the possession or possession of firearms. One of these movements called DesArma Mexico disappeared on the death of one of its founders and abandoned its website and the use of its social networks. It was against any possibility of weapons proliferating in both the public and private sectors.

There are activists that, in the face of insecurity and violence, the citizen exercises the prerogative granted by the Political Constitution of the United Mexican States to possess weapons in his home for his security and self-defense, provided that he complies with the requirements indicated in the Law specializing in the matter and make the registration before the Sedena.

The journalist Ernesto Villanueva, author of the book "El Derecho de Armarse", is not a promoter of the arms race, but he wants society to know about it as a legitimate right, of which he may have little information. So he spoke during an interview with ZETA .

"The entrance proposal is to fill the normative-social vacuum of what Constitutional Article 10 and its regulatory law is: Federal Law of Fire and Explosives. There was no work on this subject and well, what we did in this book was to identify 103 questions that have been repeatedly pointed out by society and we answered them all, not only with my opinion, but with bibliographical foundations, with empirical data, with data statistics to support the answer, " the writer said.

In his talk, Villanueva stressed that he makes a proposal of what should be, how to change, how to modernize the Federal Law on Firearms and Explosives so that it fits perfectly with Article 10 of the Constitution, "which is the raison d'être of that Law, being the statutory law of said constitutional text ".

- How many people could have firearms at home?

"Well, there is a very large black figure. The largest part is the black figure, that is, the one that does not register. Most of society has doubts, with reasons, about authority, including military. That's why the figure, it must be more than two thousand percent of the official figure, which speaks of 3,000- 4,000 weapons, maximum. Obviously there are many more, which are the vast majority, due to ignorance of society, which believes it is difficult to register a firearm. Precisely, that is the reason of the book. If someone wants to register a weapon, what should they do? In the book are the answers, step by step, what the procedure is. Step one, step two, step three ...

"It has already happened to me with friends who have told me, 'I followed what you told me and I already have my gun in my house.' I followed everything to the letter and I already have it. That is very satisfactory. "

- What is the idiosyncrasy of the Mexican, to want or to not want to have a firearm at home?

"The last survey on that topic, about five or six months ago, refers that 70% are in favor.  20% are unsure and 10% that does not know or did not answer. These results reflect a change over another similar survey conducted about five and a half years ago, where in favor it was 40.5% nearly 50%; against: more than 30%, almost 40%; and the rest did not know or did not answer ".

- Although it is legal and the authority proposes the requirements for registration through the Sedena, the discourse of the officials is against the possibility that the citizens may possesses weapons in his house. Why?

"Evidently they are against it. Those who think that, do not know what they are talking about. It is contrary to what our Constitution foresees. The right to own and carry a firearm or several firearms is a fundamental right. It is a positive human right; that is, a human right already foreseen in the Constitution, that is, it is beyond doubt. It is as if a politician were against the right to health, and said 'no, better not be cured'. Or another official against education, 'hey, do not register at the school, for what?'

"This has to be socialized. Precisely the idea of the book is to socialize this issue to discuss it; but with arguments, with sources, with elements and not let go by the simple prejudices that are very fashionable. ''More weapons, more violence.'' Its as if the weapons are handled by a supernatural force, called something like 'devil' or something that makes the weapon move alone, or momentarily take possession of who uses it. That, at least scientifically, nobody has been able to prove it to me. There is no proof about that. They are myths or urban legends, but there is nothing that could scientifically prove that kind of assertions. "

- Is it easier for any private police to miss a shot at a misfortune at home?

"If there are bloody facts at home, they usually happen because of ignorance. Unfortunately, the Law does not establish and, what it should establish, is that there be training for the proper use of firearms. Even when doing National Military Service, young people are put to do other things that have nothing to do with firearms, unlike the United States. There they send you a year to Afghanistan or another place, and there you are, you come back with a knowledge of the field and a training. Not here. Here there is an implicit fear, I believe, on the part of the government, because it knows that it is a bad government, and fears that the people, eventually, may rise in some parts. So that's a political issue, it's not a legal issue. "

-How does this work in the United States and other countries?

In the American Union what we call the theory of displacement works . If we know that in one place there are firearms in the hands of the inhabitants, it evidently becomes less attractive for the offender, who prefers to go and look for those areas where they consider that the inhabitants or the inhabitants are going to put up less resistance. Some time ago I was struck by a spectacular billboard before arriving in Texas on one of the highways. I saw a sign that said something like: ''Welcome to Texas, if you are a criminal we want to inform you that more than 75% of the people of this State have and know how to use firearms, and will have no hesitation in shooting it. Reason why, we suggest, that if your intention is to harm, then go to Oklahoma where you have more restrictive laws, and there you can carry out a crime without major resistance." 

- What type of response have you received since the publication of your book?

"In truth, it has been very well received. We released an edition five years ago in Colombia, which here was distributed more or less, not much. We made two presentations. There was a lot of debate. There were many people who were totally against it. Today those who are against are the least number. Every time I feel there is a greater acceptance. Even at the level of social networks are the contrary comments. It's a minority, I'm talking about 5% against a broad majority that is in favor. "

      The latest statistics of the numbers of licensed gun permits issued to private citizens


  1. Homicides are running rampant, and Mexico does not want thier, law abiding citizens to have weapons what so ever. It is no wonder, the Cartels can kill anyone.. they know there's little resistance.

    1. the defense of mexico like the right to posess weapons is reserved to the Secretary of Defense and their Commander in Chief... all other victims of their own allucinations risk getting exterminated like cucarachas...
      --if they are in posession of no weapons after they got exterminated, they will be provided free of charge by the mexican government, but their families will have to pay a fine if they want their carcasses returned.

  2. Trust me everyone in mexico have firearms,but they are not register. Why? Because if you need to uses it to defend yourself. Either at home or away from home ,the cops are "corrupt" and there is no law in mexico so having a gun or rifle not register is easy to throw away when need it. And not get caught I part of the idea. There is no law in mexico only the good working people are the ones facing prison if you get caught defending yourself. Ask anyone that lives in mexico fulltime..

    1. “Trust me everyone in mexico have firearms,but they are not register. ”

      Is that was true, the cartels won’t be able to do why they do. The cartels foot soldiers are 100.000, more or less, while the Mexican population is more than 100.000.000.

      They wouldn’t be able to bully the population like they do if everyone was armed like in the USA.

    2. Interesting.
      Father in law did not follow up the paperwork requirements to have his firearms registered in that municipal building. Which municipal Police came afterwards to ranch and confiscated few of his firearms and left him with one. Funny thing is that father in law said please leave me the 380 super and take the rest. Captain said I will take them all if want.
      Yo soy que mando aqui!
      Sure captain sold it to some criminal organization.
      Corrupt ass fuck bastards! No shame in their game!


    3. A lot of ranchos have rifles from the civil war. And newer model weapons as well. Many of them aren’t registered either. The reason aside from the obvious corruption that many people won’t register is defense. Majority of Mexicans in the ranchos are very humble. Hence the reason why so many won’t stand up to the criminals. Unless an immediate family member has been kidnapped, killed, or raped. Then all bets are off. Every so often gatilleros are hired to rid the landscape of unwanted people. $ determines what all can be done. - Sol Prendido

    4. That has been my observation as well, Sol. Most ranchos have an old beat up 22 lying around for an occasional emergency , rabid burro , etc, but no ammo to waste, hard to get unless some americano brings them some. They still use old snare traps for varmits ( ugh) or worse yet poison ( super ugh) but poor humble folks do what they have to do to maintain what little resources they have. They stay focused on their families and livliehoods and only grumble about all the trouble between themselves or extremely trusted amigos who are involved intimately in their tight knit clannish communities. They work their asses off proudly and keep their heads down and their mouths shut.

  3. En mi rancho en chihuahua, tengo rifles de postas y los guachos no le gustan eso

  4. Mexicans killing Mexicans, there is a bigger picture than just drugs and cartels


  6. Pendejos, turning their guns in... USA BABY.

    1. 3:17 looks like fake all made up news right?

  7. I live here ion Mexico the other day and was told that if you have to kill someone in self defense to take the body and dump it somewhere. I was told that you will more likely be thrown in prison and life will get very tough for you. It will cost a lot to defend yourself, and a lot of the times the attorneys just take the money and do nothing.

    1. The self defenders get caught, while criminals with guns get away with murder. Most cops look the other way, since they make very little per month, in US dollars approximately $300

    2. if you are not a made man and kill some cartel member, you better keep your vaseline handy, because you will pay for your sins with your ass, and that is only the down payment irregardless of what the mexican Constipations reads.

  8. How about using these guns to kill some of the wanna be cartel kids.
    EL OJ

  9. Better yet if they will not give them to the Autodefensas, then melt the guns down and use the steel for rebar, to reinforce the buildings, so in the next earthquake, they do not come down like dominos.

  10. On the street in Mexico, posessing weapons is ANATHEMA,
    even a 22 will get your ass in very big trouble if you are caught.
    That is a worser choice than being a slave for 400 years...


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