Most of us are aware of the brutality and carnage in Mexico produced by the drug cartels. I have falsely assumed that our US gun problem could, in part, be traced to guns being purchased in Mexico and brought across the border. Apparently, the reverse is true.
In 2010 Mexican President Felipe Calderon addressed a joint session of the US Congress and said he was worried about the flow of guns from the U.S. to Mexico — he told lawmakers the violence started to increase in his country soon after an assault-rifle ban expired in the U.S. in 2004.
"I will ask Congress to help us, with respect, and to understand how important it is for us that you enforce current laws to stem the supply of these weapons to criminals and consider reinstating the assault-weapons ban," he said.
“Over the past three years, Mexican authorities have seized some 75,000 weapons used in crime; 80 percent of which came from the US.”
That same year, the National Presbyterian Church of Mexico asked the Presbyterian Church (USA) for help.
Dear brothers and sisters in Jesus Christ:
The National Presbyterian Church of Mexico is worried due to the high percentage of violence that we are living in our country today. Kidnapping and murders are there everywhere, especially in cities such as Tijuana, Monterrey, Juarez City, Morella, (and) Acapulco.
That is why we come to you brothers and sisters in Christ so that you may help us according to your possibilities in transmitting our concerns to those in charge of selling guns to Mexican people. Since the guns are used by drug dealers to kill, and in many cases—sadly to say—innocent people.
So as leaders of the NPC of Mexico, we have come to the conclusion that we have to raise our voices against violence; and together with you all, we might share the same feeling so that our presidents may work hard to make stability a reality in our countries.
We truly appreciate your gentle attention to this letter. [i]
[i] “Fix Border Policy, Mexican Leader Tells U.S. Congress,” by Michele Kelemen, NPR, 6/20/10
& James Atwood, America and Its Guns, Cascade Books, 2012, pp. 181-2