“Almost 60,000 people were murdered in Brazil in 2014, most with guns,” npr.org reports. “While some Latin American countries have higher per capita murder rates, in absolute numbers, Brazil is the deadliest place in the world outside Syria. Brazilians are far more likely to be shot to death than Americans, a more populous country where there are about 8,000 to 9,000 gun homicides each year. Still, a group of Brazilian congressmen wants to make guns easier to obtain, modeling their proposal on U.S. legislation.” Still? What’s Portuguese for oy vey? Anyway . . .
Congressman Edson Moreira wants to make it easier to get guns . . .
“Brazil doesn’t have a gun problem. It has a problem of illegal guns in the hands of criminals, especially drug traffickers,” he says.
His group is trying to relax the ability of the police to decide who gets a weapon. “The idea is to return to the public the right to own a gun or not,” he says.
His argument is one familiar to Americans: If the “bad guys” have guns, the “good guys” should be allowed to have them as well to protect themselves.
Indeed, Moreira says he is inspired by America’s gun laws.
“The U.S.A. has the perfect legislation in the Second Amendment, which guarantees the population the right to bear arms,” he says.
Ain’t that the truth. One thing it isn’t: breaking news. Brazilians have been trying to roll back their restrictive gun control laws since 2003, when Brazil enacted the Disarmament Statue, preventing civilians from carrying guns in public and making firearms permits virtually unobtainable.
Initially firearm-related deaths fell, from nearly 40k in 2003 to just over 34k in 2004. Then, as noted above, they didn’t. npr.org somehow forgot to give the raw numbers. In 2014, Brazil was home to some 60k firearms-related homicides. That’s 116 murders per day. The country now accounts for 10 percent of all the world’s recorded firearms-related homicides.
With lobbying help from the NRA, Brazil held a national referendum in 2015 to restore gun rights. It passed. And then was ignored. wikipedia.org:
Brazilian Department of Justice (Ministério da Justiça), at the time it performs each individual’s mandatory background check (what is made prior every gun acquisition, and every three years after it’s acquired, whats allows gun confiscation), have been forbidding almost every citizens to buy guns, based on the Executive Order # 5.123, of 07/01/2004, that allows Brazilian FBI (Polícia Federal) to analize the reasons that motivate a gun acquisition and the will of keeping an acquired gun, in which it’s not considered a valid argument “self defense” because, according to them, there are allegedly sufficient and efficient public polices that are in charge of nationwide security, among other reasons of this kind of denial.
Despite talk of an individual right to bear arms, if the latest legislation passes it will only represent an incremental move towards restoring Brazilians’ gun rights. For example, ammunition purchases by newly enabled gun owners would be limited to 50 rounds per month. Still . . . [h/t misterO]