In an effort to combat his country’s rising number of murders, Brazilian President-elect Jair Bolsonaro is choosing the road less traveled: he said he plans to relax restrictions on gun ownership so his countrymen can protect themselves.
Yep, you read that right. Contrary to the notion that many elitists in the U.S. follow—you know, the one where every time there is a gun crime, they call for rules that do nothing but make it harder for law-abiding citizens to exercise their Second Amendment rights—Bolsonaro says he wants to restore the ability of people to buy guns so they can protect themselves and their loved ones.
What a concept! It sounds like one the NRA has stood by for decades.
Bolsonaro, in a recent television interview—his first since winning the election—said its time for his country to recognize the “politically correct fallacy” that stricter requirements for individual gun ownership makes the country safer. “More than safeguarding someone’s life, firearms safeguard the freedom of a people,” he said.
Where did he look to come to that conclusion? Well, he might well have looked north to the United States. If so, here are a couple of things he would have seen:
Brazil had an official murder rate of 30.8 per 100,000 people in 2017. The homicide rate in America was about one-sixth of that.
Brazil has about eight firearms for every 100 people. In the U.S., there are about 122 guns per 100 people.
So, he would have been able to correctly extrapolate that the number of guns in a society has little correlation to the murder rate, despite what the likes of our Michael Bloombergs and Hollywood celebs might say.
The truer point is that all the gun laws in the world won’t keep guns out of the hands of criminals; rather, they just leave the peaceable, law-abiding citizens more vulnerable to the whims of those with evil intent.
Hats off to Bolsonaro for seeing the situation for what it really is.