Christiane Amanpour’s recent video report on the violence in Mexico because of the drug war includes a calm and rational interview with Mexican Ambassador to the U.S., Arturo Sarukhan. At the 5:25 mark in the video, Sarukhan makes a reasoned assessment of the controversial 2nd Amendment in the U.S. Constitution and its intention by stating:
Every time there’s a gunfight at the state and local level, we have to call in our 7th Calvary, the armed forces, because they are being simply overpowered by the firepower that these thugs are wielding. What I am convinced of is that the Founding Fathers did not draft the 2nd Amendment to: A) allow international organized crime to illicitly buy weapons in the United States, B) to cross them over international borders, and C) to allow individuals who should not be buying weapons in the first place to acquire those weapons.
His concerns are valid and the reality that these things are happening is indisputable at this point. We are well aware of the 70,000 guns seized by Mexican law enforcement the ATF traced back to U.S. sellers so one fact needs to accepted: our ridiculously lax gun laws have created a war zone in Mexico. The level of brutality has increased over time and some of the most gruesome acts make headlines in the U.S., such as the 49 mutilated and decapitated bodies found a couple of weeks ago or the 23 people murdered roughly a week prior to that. If this is what it takes to make the headlines in the U.S., imagine how much doesn’t make it.
The fact there is little compromise in the debate on this issue is really an impressive feat by the gun lobby. They have been so successful at their propaganda campaign that even the slightest restriction on firearms is seen as an extreme act. Case in point, a fact from one of the articles linked above:
U.S. gun store owners in southwestern border states sued to overturn an Obama administration requirement that they report to the ATF when customers buy multiple high-powered rifles within a five-day period. A federal court upheld the requirement.
Why is this unreasonable? Remember, this isn’t stopping the purchase of the military weapon. It’s just trying to alert officials to potential gun smugglers yet policies like these are portrayed as if the government is bringing about the apocalypse.
Our nearly non-existent gun laws have been a significant factor in creating a war zone in Mexico and their government officials are appalled by the fact over 50,000 of their people have died in six years because of it. The sad part is the people contributing to the sale of these military weapons are too busy making money to care.
2 thoughts on “Worthy Criticism of Second Amendment by Mexican Official”
While I do agree with the private ownership of firearms, I have always been adamant about the need for better gun control laws as well as stiffer penalties for crimes committed with firearms. It is much to easy to obtain a firearm in the US and this really does need to change. The real intention of the Founding Fathers was to maintain a militia as they originally started with no government level military, nor did they want one. The continued idea of citizens having firearms was in case there was a military uprising the citizens would be able to fight back; however, the military has access to weaponry that normal citizens stand absolutely no chance of getting or standing against.
It is far past the time to revisit the Second Amendment, as well as the whole Constitution, adapt it for the modern age and remove most, if not all, of the ambiguity from it. It was Thomas Jefferson who first put forth the idea of a Living Constitution, a constitution that was revisited at least once a generation. Instead, what we have is a 200+ year old document that has almost no bearing on the modern day we are living in and is subject to the varying opinions of whichever justices happen to be sitting on the SCOTUS bench.
I agree the intent of the Founding Fathers is certainly important. We should definitely be taking into account the environment they were in at the time and the reality that things have drastically changed since then. It could be argued the amendment was put in simply in the interest of survival of the new and relatively weak country, which obviously is not an issue now.