Conflict & Justice

Brazil's gun control efforts

Police cars and officers can be seen and heard everywhere in Rio, which has one of the highest murder rates in the world. Yet many don't trust the police to protect them so they resort to arming themselves. This gun control organization leader says that's a big problem and the guns are ending up in the hands of bandits. His group wants to see a total reduction in gun ownership but it's a hard sell here. a couple years ago, a poll showed that 70% of Brazilians supported a total gun ban but then the Brazilian gun lobby started running ads which suggested Brazilians have a right to bear arms, that a gun ban could lead to the elimination of civil liberties, and the referendum was ultimately defeated. Word also leaked that the NRA helped Brazil's gun lobby in the campaign. Three years later, gun backers are still celebrating their win. Even though the referendum failed, Brazil has steadily tightened its gun laws. The gun backer says the laws make it harder to own guns in Brazil and he says he defends owning guns as a matter of principle.

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