Thursday, September 24, 2020
Sept. 24, 2020

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Letter: U.S. guns flow across border

The Columbian
Published:

According to the latest figures, some 75 percent of the estimated 30,000 drug war murders in Mexico last year were linked to firearms bought in the U.S. In most states, it is legal to buy guns with only a criminal background check. Beyond that, the law has no control over who subsequently might possess those firearms or how they are used. One U.S. citizen recently bought a bundle of AK-47s at a gun show, and then in plain sight handed them over to a Mexican national.

The Supreme Court has ruled that it is my Second Amendment right to own a gun, but it was silent on what responsibility this right entails. What if I were to be held criminally responsible for how it was used by another person? That might make me think twice about how I exercised my Second Amendment right to gun ownership; i.e., who I sold it to, who borrowed it, who might steal it, etc. Modern technology makes it possible to embed an electronically readable bar code within the gun metal itself — a code that is registered with my name and fingerprints at the time of purchase. Will this eliminate the flow of guns across the border? No. But it sure might slow it down.

David C. Duncombe

WHITE SALMON

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