Last night, we told you about the extraordinary steps taken by the governor of New Mexico, basically telling people that they can’t legally carry a firearm in Albuquerque for the next 30 days. Cam went into some more detail earlier this morning.
This was all under the guise of a public health emergency, which should chill you to your very bones, particularly if someone else starts getting ideas.
However, this didn’t sit well with me, and not just for all the obvious reasons.
After all, violent crime seems to be trending downward this year over last year. Why make a move like this here and now? Is Albuquerque a city that’s bucking the overall trend?
I decided to look, and guess what? It’s not.
The Albuquerque Police Department has reported an 11% decrease in homicides for the month of August 2023 compared to August 2022. As of August 2023, APD reports 74 homicides for the month of August compared to 90 homicides in August 2022.
In August 2021, APD reported 75 homicides, compared to 74 homicides reported in 2023, so far. In 2022, 120 homicides were reported for the entire year. It was the highest reported for a single year in the city of Albuquerque.
Now, I’m not going to pretend there isn’t a problem in Albuquerque, but it seems like it’s already moving in the right direction.
So why now?
Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham claimed the catalyst was the murder of an 11-year-old boy in a road rage incident, which is no doubt tragic. However, the murder of one person does not a public health emergency make.
I’m sure it’s the most awful thing the boy’s parents have ever experienced and it’s something that’s upsetting for almost anyone. I’ve got an 11-year-old daughter and I can’t even try to put myself in their shoes. I don’t think I could deal with it.
But again, that does not make it a public health emergency.
For a while now, many anti-gunners–and yes, Grisham is in that camp–have been talking about treating so-called gun violence as a public health issue. If that meant focusing on the causes and taking steps to mitigate it through medical and psychological interventions, so much the better. Yet what many feared, myself included, was that the mechanisms we saw deployed during COVID would be used again.
Grisham did just that, despite Albuquerque’s homicide rate currently trending downward without any such intervention.
In other words, it damn sure doesn’t look like a public health emergency here and now, which makes the move even more concerning than if she’d done something like this last year.
What’s more, a video of Grisham makes it clear that she doesn’t take constitutional rights seriously. She even acknowledges at the end of this video that criminals aren’t going to adhere to her directive.
If we let politicians break the law in an emergency, politicians will create an emergency so they can break the law.
— Being Libertarian (@beinlibertarian) September 9, 2023
So Grisham acknowledges that this will only impact law-abiding people, not criminals, but she’s doing it anyway. She’s not even blinking at subverting the Second Amendment based on her own criteria of a public health issue while knowing it won’t actually impact the real problem.
And I bet she wonders why folks like me won’t work with her side to find some kind of common ground.