The Caravan of Peace attends an event where you can buy an AK-47 in only 5 minutes - "We come to seek peace and they try to sell us war."
original story byñol at animalpolitico.com
(Albuquerque, 08-18) - Bert is an expert in pistols, rifles, machine guns and everything related to the defense industry, but claims to have never fired a bullet against any animal or any other living thing.
"I do target shooting, that's all I like to eat meat, but that does not mean I'm going to go out and kill bambi and then cook it," argues the arms dealer, who traveled with his brother this weekend to Albuquerque for the "Gun Show" at the New Mexico State Fair.
With a gentle smile on his face, the bearded retailer of the store, whose logo is a skull happy with sunglasses, explains that Albuquerque is a fairly good place for this type of event.
This auditorium packed with hundreds of men, women, children and even babies, each paying six dollars a ticket, proves that Bert is right on the money, and everything is for sale, from rusty old 22 caliber pistols to brand new AK-47s complete with magazines and ammunition.
When asked the procedure to buy the Kalashnikov automatic rifle, known to members of organized crime in Mexico as "goat horn", the seller says all you need is a state ID, and a quick criminal record check.
"If you meet these two requirements, the process will not take more than five minutes, and for only 1200 dollars, you can head out with an AK-47 on your shoulder," proudly concludes proudly a salesman from "Black Gun Stuff", adding that the gun control policies in this country are sufficiently rigid to prevent smugglers from trafficking these artifacts to other countries.
Bert's version contrasts with the report "Trafficking of U.S. weapons into Mexico: new data and analysis clarifying the main trends and challenges", which has documented that 80% of the weapons seized from organized crime in Mexico, in the last three years, come from the USA.
The document, prepared by the international public policy specialist Colby Goldman and co-authored by journalist Michel Marizco, also states that the AK-47 is the weapon of choice for smugglers.
In order to open a dialogue with the people involved in arms sales activity, which in this country is protected constitutionally, Javier Sicilia and other members of the Caravan for Peace entered the "Gun Show".
There the poet talked for ten minutes with another vendor, Roger Findle, who argues that the 2nd amendment is essential because "citizens can defend themselves" if a tyrant comes to power.
Sicily's arguments about the damage done by these weapons in Mexico did not convince Findle, who after trying to sell a sword or a gun for personal protection to the poet, closed the dialogue with a terse statement: "This is a hobby" .
Just outside the Kafkaesque display of warmongers, Sicilia argued that these shows abuse the goal of the "Second Amendment" and lamented that the U.S. government does not undertake to prevent illicit arms trafficking that cause tens thousands of deaths in Mexico each year .
The poet, who claimed to have gone to the fair horrified by "the warlords", recalled that one of the five objectives of the Caravan for Peace in Washington is to take appropriate measures to stop illegal arms smuggling.
Several merchants suggested that he should take a gun for protection in Mexico, and Sicily remarked:
"We come to seek peace and they try to sell us war."