On Wednesday, Dr. Lott of the Crime Prevention Research Center (CPRC) testified in front of the Mexican Senate and House Constitution Committees on how to reform Mexican gun laws. Mexican officials wanted to hear about gun laws in America and how our laws differ from Mexico’s gun control measures.
Senator Jorge Luis Preciado brought Lott in to consider the effects of reforming Mexico’s major gun control measure, 1972 Federal Law on Firearms and Explosives. According to Milenio, a Mexican news source, this forum was part of Presciado’s push to allow firearms in homes and cars for self-defense. He wanted to look at international laws and their impacts on citizens.
“In the debate on gun control [it] is easy to talk about what could go wrong, but we do not have to guess. There are many experiences in several countries that could be considered,” Dr. Lott told the committees. “For example, if it [legally owning a firearm] worked in the United States why not believe that it’d work in Mexico too? …what can they lose if they give people the opportunity to defend themselves?”
During Lott’s testimony, he explained anti-gunners concern over suicides, homicides and accidental firings. He explained that this narrative is false, especially because there aren’t enough police to be in every area at every moment. According to Lott, passing pro-gun legislation would benefit those in poverty.
Lott explained the failure of gun control in America, citing a shocking statistic: that 98 percent of mass shootings have taken place in gun-free zones.
“A woman who is to be raped, can she tell the rapist to wait while she calls the police? If you are being robbed, can you tell the thief to wait while you call the police? That’s impossible,” Lott told the committee.
When Lott examined Mexico’s homicide rates, he noted the decrease in homicides from 1960 to 1972. That number began to increase once the 1972 Federal Law on Firearms and Explosives was enacted, causing Lott to ask one pertinent question: “So we must ask: why believe that the law of 1972 gave greater security to the people? “
Those who are against the proposal have been outspoken:
Ernesto Lopez Portillo, of the Institute for Security and Democracy (Insyde), said that this organization opposes the Senator Preciado’s proposal and said that 133 reports and 200 experiences generated in the Forum for the Prevention of Violence and Killings were reviewed “and we find no single case in which the bearing of arms is recommended” to reduce such cases.