Under Strict Gun Control Brazil's Firearms Homicide Rate Has Soared To Six Times That In The USA
|Guns like these have been confiscated|
for decades - and gun crime keeps
1) Before one can buy a gun, one must obtain a license. This requires and extensive background check (criminal, employment, health and mental). The process typically takes 9-12 months.
2) A license requires a minimum fee of $257.64 - a huge sum in a developing country, and the equivalent of $1700.00 in the USA (indexed for average income). This is more than many firearms cost. Furthermore, this license must be renewed every 3 years, at a cost of $21.90 - equivalent of $144.50 in the USA. This places legal gun ownership out of reach for most people.
3) The minimum age for gun ownership is 25.
4) All firearms are required to be registered with the government.
5) Handguns are all but banned, with ownership effectively limited to members of the military and police.
6) It is all but impossible for the average person to get a license to carry outside the home.
7) There is an ongoing amnesty program to encourage people to surrender illegal firearms.
So with all of these laws - basically everything gun control advocates here in the US have been asking for - Brazil must have a low rate of gun crime, right? WRONG!
From Wikipedia: "Brazil's homicide rate is 30–35 homicides per 100,000 inhabitants according to the UNODC, placing Brazil in the top 20 countries by intentional homicide rate." The current US homicide rate 4.9 per 100k population. This means that in spite of having every gun control law that gun control advocates want, the homicide rate in Brazil is more than six times higher than the US homicide rate. In addition, armed robbery and kidnapping are very common.
Much of this crime involves firearms. In 2012 (the most recent single year stats I could find), Brazil's firearms homicide rate was over six times higher then the United States -18.1 per 100k population, vs. 2.97 in the US. There are an estimated 17 million guns in Brazil - 9 million of which are illegally held and unregistered. The criminal use of firearm is massive and growing. The only thing these gun laws have done is disarm descent, law abiding people who were never a threat - leaving them helpless before the many well armed criminals.
Additionally, just as in Chicago, otherwise law abiding people have decided that they will simply buy a gun illegally. Effectively, many have come to view these gun laws in the same way Americans viewed prohibition in the late 1920s - as an unjust law that they have no problem violating. Of course, should they ever have to use these firearms to defend themselves, they could be charged with illegal possession.
In short, it is clear that these draconian gun laws certainly have not made things better, and likely have made things much worse. The voters in Brazil have apparently reached the same conclusion, as they have elected a new president who has promised to make it possible for the average Brazilian to own firearms. They also elected a majority of lawmakers who made the same commitment. While we do not know what laws will be changed to accomplish this - it appears certain that many of the above gun laws will be repealed or drastically revised.
While what the new system of gun regulation will be is unknown at this point, more law abiding citizens will be allowed to own firearms and many of these people will be allowed to carry them. One thing does seen very clear: It is highly unlikely that this will make things worse.