Brazil: More Guns, Less Crime

Brazil: More Guns, Less Crime

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The right to self-defense is a fundamental human right that is protected by the United States Constitution. With that in mind, it’s important to look at other countries and their perspectives on firearms for context. While it’s true that on any given day you might not need a gun, if you do, nothing else will do the job.

Recently, my colleague Jeff Charles has highlighted several examples of successful self-defense by legal gun owners. His work serves as a powerful reminder of why people—especially women—need guns. Now Brazil is learning this lesson as well.

Brazilian researchers recently reported that the number of violent deaths in Brazil reached their lowest level in more than a decade in 2022. This decrease is even more remarkable considering the explosion of firearms circulating in the country in recent years. While President Jair Bolsonaro worked to loosen regulations on gun ownership, the number of firearms registered with the Federal Police skyrocketed.

However, Brazil remains a dangerous place. The percentage of violent deaths attributed to firearms is much higher than the world average and new left-wing president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva is now working to undo Bolsonaro’s changes.

Dr. John Lott, who has researched the “more guns, less crime” theory, recently challenged other gun and crime researchers to a bet to see if homicide rates would increase or decrease in Brazil. This should prove to be an interesting test on the outcomes of stricter gun control policies.

Comparing nations on the issue of gun control is often difficult due to differing cultures and histories. For example, Japan has strict gun control while the United States was born out of violent revolution and is culturally diverse. With that in mind, the strongest argument for the right to bear arms in the U.S. still stands: our Constitution.

On any given day, you might not need a gun. But if you need one, nothing else will do the job. Our fight to retain the right to have a gun when necessary will go on, regardless of what happens in Brazil

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