The Guns aren’t Guilty….Rising Mexican Drug Violence Fueled by Guns Smuggled From U.S.

By: Lisa Coleman

I am married to an avid hunter. We have guns in our home, in a gun safe. I own a gun. I don’t use it much because I’m such a miserable shot, but I do believe in the Second Amendment and the right to keep and bear arms. I live in Arizona, a state where there is no waiting period to purchase a gun and no restrictions on the purchase of high-powered assault weapons, including how many may be bought at one time. Now that whole aspect of ownership, I am against. Nonetheless, the guns aren’t the guilty ones. They don’t get up and walk across the border themselves. They are sold, stolen and smuggled.

When discussing the “war on drugs” the finger always seems to point south, but it is simple economics people – supply and demand. And, no one seems to be talking much about the ammunition that keeps this battle raging.

Mexico’s drug cartels have turned increasingly violent as they fight back against President Felipe Calderon’s efforts to regain the upper hand in the country’s drug war. An analysis in the current issue of FLYP, a new online multimedia magazine (that can be accessed at demonstrates the dramatic increase in the cartel’s firepower. Almost all of the weapons are bought in the U.S. and smuggled across the border.

“The cartels are arming themselves with .50-caliber sniper rifles, rocket launchers, fragmentation and gas grenades, and a wide range of assault weapons,” said Matthew Schaeffer, who wrote “Guns Without Borders.” “We documented Mexican government seizures this year alone of 900 heavy weapons, 270 handguns and 330 grenades — and everyone acknowledges this only scratches the surface of the cartels’ arsenals,” he continued.

According to the article on, it’s all about the cash (shocking, I know). Anyway, guns that cost $200 – $300 in the U.S. can command $2,000 – $3,000 price tags in Mexico. As the article also discusses, “the two elephants in the room are the NRA and corruption.” In 2004, a ten-year year ban expired on the sale of semi-automatic assault weapons to civilians. Do the math on that one and I think the connection is rather obvious.

This is one of those topics that could go on forever, but for today, please go to and read this very important article in its entirety. If we want to win the war, we may want to start by not handing out the weapons.