British Ambassador to Mexico Dismissed After Pointing Gun at Staff

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It's quite possible that Jon Benjamin has never heard of the 4 Rules of Gun Safety. He is from the United Kingdom, after all, which has done its level best to destroy any semblance of a culture of responsible gun ownership. But even if Benjamin has never had any experience with an NRA-certified firearms instructor or spent any time at a gun range, he should have known better than to point a rifle at someone unless he was willing and ready to pull the trigger. 

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Unfortunately for the career diplomat, his idiocy was caught on camera, and now it looks like he's out of a job. 

According to the Financial Times, the video was taken last month in northern Mexico, while Benjamin was on an official trip to the Mexican states of Durango and Sinaloa, both of which have a substantial cartel presence. FT reports that the @subdiplomatic account on X (formerly Twitter) is "apparently controlled by employees of the embassy" who have a bone to pick with the now-former ambassador. 

Another tweet from the account claimed Benjamin subjected Mexican embassy staff to "systematic harassment", though without the same type of video evidence revealing Benjamin's dangerous and cavalier attitude handling a gun. 

The Daily Mail reports that Benjamin has served in the diplomatic services for 35 years, but this could very well end up as his last assignment for the Crown. 

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This is not the first time that Mr Benjamin has found himself in controversy during his high-profile diplomatic career.

While the UK’s ambassador to Chile in 2012 he was forced into issuing a grovelling apology after posting a derogatory football tweet about Argentinians and the Falklands War.

He added: ‘What were the islands that they took, from whom and for what reason? Maybe I'll get to know at the National Stadium this Tuesday? I've already got my ticket.’

His post caused a national outcry in Argentina with national media accusing him of being rude and insulting the nation.

Mr Benjamin later removed the tweet and apologised, saying: ‘I'm sorry I offended with a private message that I published by mistake. I feel great affection for my Argentine friends and respect for their national side.’

Joking about the Falklands War was enough to cause controversy in Argentina, and that kind of pales in comparison to pointing a rifle at a Mexican employee of the British embassy. After the video of Benjamin's grossly irresponsible behavior emerged online, I'm not surprised the British government removed the ambassador from his position.  At least he kept his finger off the trigger in the five-second video clip, but he still violated one of the fundamental tenets of responsible gun handling. 

Though Benjamin should have known better regardless of whether he's had any formal firearms instruction, I can't help but think that if Benjamin had been exposed to firearms training in the past he wouldn't have been stupid enough to pick up the rifle and point it at someone in the backseat of the SUV. That's Gun Safety 101, but the United Kingdom has largely adopted the gun control lobby's four rules of "gun safety": don't shoot one, don't buy one, don't own one, and don't learn anything about them. 

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A little training goes a long way, and even a basic handgun safety course would have taught Benjamin that firearms aren't toys or props. I know the U.K. isn't going to re-embrace the right to keep and bear arms anytime soon. Still, the British government should at least provide its diplomats with some basic lessons on firearm safety before sending them off on assignments to places like Mexico, where violence is so bad that they'll have armed protection on a regular basis because the restrictive gun control laws in place have done a decent job of disarming the civilian populace, but have done nothing to prevent the rise of an armed narco-state. 

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