President’s Column | El Salvador’s Strict Gun Control Does Nothing To Thwart Crime

at President, NRA posted on October 29, 2015
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Michael Ives

This feature appears in the November ‘15 issue of NRA America’s 1st Freedom, one of the official journals of the National Rifle Association.  

“El Salvador’s most violent month: homicide rate hits record high in May.” 

That headline on caught my attention, because El Salvador is about to become the most violent and dangerous country on Earth. Gun control?The story proclaimed, “El Salvador broke a grisly record in May with 635 homicides, believed to be the most killings for a single month since the Central American country’s civil war ended in 1992.”

The story proclaimed, “El Salvador broke a grisly record in May with 635 homicides, believed to be the most killings for a single month since the Central American country’s civil war ended in 1992.”

There was something curiously missing, and I wanted to see if other coverage would fill the gap. 

The virulently anti-gun Huffington Post produced a similar piece, updated in July, calling the record homicides “a dark milestone … that could mark a trend of greater violence to come,” and it declared, “At this rate, El Salvador is on a pace to surpass Honduras as the deadliest peace-time country on earth.”

The more coverage of runaway violence in El Salvador I read, the more the missing half of the story seemed painfully obvious.

If this were news about a “grisly record” of killings in Chicago, Washington, D.C., or Los Angeles, President Barack Obama, Michael Bloomberg, Hillary Clinton and the usual host of gun-ban mercenaries would be quoted blaming the freedom of law-abiding Americans as the cause for criminal abuse of firearms.

But in revealing the details of the carnage in El Salvador, none of the reports demanded new gun control?

There was absolutely nothing in any of that coverage about the need for “common-sense gun-safety measures to make El Salvadorians safer.” 

There was not a word about “keeping guns out of the hands of the El Salvadorian gangs” who purportedly are a major source of deadly violence. 

No one was demanding “universal” background checks to stem the horrific crime wave gripping that nation. 

Why not? The answer is simple: The media ignored the gun control part of their endless traditional narrative on armed violence because El Salvador already has implemented every scheme ever demanded by the U.S. media and gun-ban politicians. 

And none of it has anything to do with the armed violent criminals who are terrorizing El Salvador. 

The most concise roundup of gun control laws and edicts in El Salvador is published on at the Sydney School of Public Health in Australia. That organization is part of a worldwide network pushing gun ownership as a public health issue under which our private ownership of firearms is considered a disease in need of eradication. Their ultimate cure for “firearm violence” is absolute gun prohibition for innocent civilian gun owners everywhere. El Salvador is awash not in guns, but in armed predators who carry out their terror outside any possible law or ‘control.’

I’ll summarize their descriptions of El Salvadorian “gun control,” which encompasses everything that the gun-ban crowd in the U.S. has in store for law-abiding Americans. 

First of all, in El Salvador, there is no right to own firearms. All private firearms are “regulated by the Ministry of National Defence and the National Civil Police” and “only licensed gun owners may lawfully acquire, possess or transfer a firearm or ammunition.” 

To qualify for a license, an individual is subjected to a background check “which considers criminal, mental and health records.” In addition, a prospective licensed gun owner must demonstrate an “understanding of firearm safety” and must “re-qualify for their firearm license every three years.” Failing to renew the license would result in confiscation. 

Further, in El Salvador, “the law requires that a record of the acquisition, possession and transfer of each privately held firearm be retained in an official register,” “the private sale and transfer of firearms is prohibited” and “the number and type of firearms which can be sold by a licensed gun dealer to a single gun owner is limited to one firearm every two years.”

All of this is laid out by the world-stage gun-banners with pride, but there is nothing but shame in it. El Salvador is awash not in guns, but in armed predators who carry out their terror outside any possible law or “control.” 

There is an inescapable conclusion: El Salvador and other violent nations provide a living laboratory for every form of gun control ever conceived. And the result is always failure. Above all, it exposes the end game for the U.S. anti-Second Amendment crowd. 

But the willfully ignorant U.S. media refuses to report the truth about places like El Salvador—with its tsunami of violent crime and its gun control—in hopes that the American people will be none the wiser. And that is a journalistic crime. 

It is up to us to pass along the truth.


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