My headline can be applicable for quite some time but I'm specifically referring to this story about Mexican cartels buying guns in American gun stores,mostly in Arizona.
"Traffic of heavy weaponry from American gun stores to Mexican drug cartels will once again feature in talks between the U.S. and Mexico when President Barack Obama and Mexican President Felipe Calderon meet at a North American summit in Guadalajara on Aug. 9 and Aug. 10. Mexico with its strict gun laws has long complained that the vast majority of firearms used by the gangs wrecking havoc here are brought in El Norte. Meanwhile, Obama has said more unequivocally than any president before that the U.S. has responsibility to stop American guns getting into the hands of the mobsters."
First things first, what the fuck is with the phrase, "El Norte?" Seriously TIME, have your standards dropped so low.
Second, while the mainstream media has always loved the topic of Mexican gangsters getting their expensive weapons from Arizona, it has done so for all the wrong reasons. Its a great story for anti-gun lobbyists who can now use redneck racism against the redneck 'keep your hands off of my guns' attitude. These stories will tell you, what many politicians from Bush to Obama will tell you, 90% of the weapons used by the Cartels come from American gun stores. Unfortunately for our politicians sense of honesty, that fact just isn't true. (for those not going to the link, 90% of guns tested are from American gun stores but the rest aren't tested because they're ruled out as non-American in origin before they reach American testing).
As Peter McCary Notes in The Devil's Advocate (Duke Law's independent newspaper):
"this narrative has frequently been untrue even for weapons traced back to the U.S. Over the past six years, more than 150,000 Mexican soldiers have defected and begun to work for the drug cartels that they formerly opposed. Many defectors have taken their M-16 rifles with them; Colt sold these weapons to the Mexican government with permission from the U.S. government. Admittedly, the evidence above leaves open the possibility that the cartels are primarily arming themselves with weapons bought in American stores."
Back to the article. The laughability continues:
"seven months into Obama's administration the guns keep flowing south and show no sign of abating. Mexican government raids continue to turn up vast arsenals of brand new firearms that can be traced to shops north of the Rio Grande. Another sign of the gangster's abundant supply of firepower is that they can afford to leave some weapons at murder scenes to avoid detection.
The first two sentences have no substance or proof of accuracy or anything to convince a cynic this isn't just a journalist saying what his pal in government wants him to. The last bit just shows how little this reporter knows about crime. I'm a pacifist, sissy stoner and even I know that any professional will leave his weapon at the scene; I've seen The Godfather.
Finally, the Time article mentions the Merida Initiative (or Plan Mexico as its critics call it) in the final paragraph as if it were something beneficial to the situation:
Calderon will be especially keen to see new efforts on the U.S. side because a large chunk of the American money promised for Mexico has been delayed. Under the Merida Initiative, $1.4 billion was earmarked to help Mexico fight cartels over three years. But following accusations of Mexican army abuses — including torture, rape, and murder — the Senate has held back 15% of those funds until it can certify that Mexico is making efforts to clean up its human rights record. Mexico's Congress this week issued a statement condemning this certification process.
It's nice to see Mexico's government condemning America for not sending them money for their soldiers to use to steal from, intimidate, and murder their citizens. I actually sent a message to Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy, thanking him for being responsible for this holdup. (p.s. that's not a bad idea for anyone who wants to help out but doesn't know how... just write to elected officials, thanking them when they do things you agree with.)
Hey, I know a great way to end the worry about Mexican gangs getting access to American weapons, whether its from gun stores, theft, or just Colt selling M-16s to corrupt military with US government approval... STOP GIVING THEM A WAY TO MAKE MONEY AND JUST FUCKING LEGALIZE ALREADY... Wow, I must be upset, I'm shouting on the internet... Or maybe I'm just sober.
Time to go smoke a joint and continue to prove that all this conflict isn't accomplishing anything.
Peace, Love, and Bowls,
15 hours ago