In great contrast to many liberal cities in the USA, the country of Panama has made a bold move to lift the ban on weapons so that citizens can defend themselves.
Why would Panama lift their weapon ban you ask? It could be due in part to the rise in crime rates, gang activity, and excessive amounts of forged gun permits. It was mentioned by Public Safety Minister Rodolfo Aguilera that Panama wanted to follow in the footsteps of the US which stands with the second amendment for fewer homicides per capita.
“Everything seems to indicate that there is no direct correlation in the aphorism that says more guns mean more crime,” said Aguilera.
The Minister also said the new background checks would be in place for new gun owners that include criminal and psychological checks. Panama’s law since 2012 has been that only state security forces were permitted to import weapons. However, the Central America Integration System wanted to review the import ban before the National Assembly takes any action.
“It’s a decision for each sovereign government to make, but we should take into account that for criminals, anything that is prohibited becomes more attractive,” said Hefer Morataya, director of SICA.
From January to March of 2015 there were 165 homicides within six different regions. over 70% of those were committed with a firearm. “The issue of security will not be solved because every citizen has a weapon to defend themselves,” former congresswoman Teresita Arias said.
In 2012 the UN Office on Drugs and Crime gave an estimate of some 700,000 firearms circulating though the streets of Panama.
It is truly sad when the leaders of a Central American country have more sense than the leaders of our largest cities (and of our country while we’re at it).
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