Congressmen in Brazil, one of the most violent countries in the world, are proposing to dramatically loosen restrictions on personal gun ownership, bringing the country much closer to the American right to bear arms.The politicians say the measures are necessary to allow embattled citizens the right to defend themselves from criminals armed with illegal weapons. But opponents say the move will only increase the country’s toll of nearly 60,000 murders in 2014.The draft law, which is set to be voted on by the lower house of congress this month, introduces a right for citizens to own firearms for self-defense or the protection of property. Currently, citizens must apply for a gun permit and justify why they need a gun, meaning that applications can be easily denied.
I doubt it will pass in its current form or anytime soon. But the fact that it is being seriously discussed is an amazing change for Brazil and South America in general. Basically somebody took a sledge hammer to the tectonic plates of status quo and gave it a good whack.
It also represents the desperation that grips people in Brazil. Criminals outnumber police and they are not afraid of them. The military was sent to the favelas (ghettos) and got their asses kicked. The good people are hostage of a well armed minority because Gun Control has been the doctrine since the early 20th Century.
However, the Brazilian Congress needs to also copy the U.S. self-defense laws that give the citizens the benefit of the doubt and the assumption of innocence, something that is lacking in South America. Without those, people will not feel confident enough to defend themselves. Those two together? Drop in crime will follow (and lots of criminals assuming room temperature)
Pray for Brazil.