Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Beheadings in Mexico

Beheadings in Mexico have become the newest means of communicating the old message, "Don't mess with us." The Washington Post reports that not only drug cartels are using this extreme method but also the police. The latest case is a man who shot his mother and killed the three police officers who responded to the shooting.

Fabian Ramirez's head was found at a highway intersection in Iguala, a town southwest of Mexico City, according to a statement from the Guerrero state Public Safety department.

A message was found nearby: "This is what happens to all those who kill a police officer or a soldier."

It was reported that Mr. Ramirez had been arrested but four armed men broke into the jail and took him away by force. The four men were dressed in black and had lettering on their clothes identifying them as agents of Mexico's Federal Investigative Agency, the statement said.

I don't know what's more frightening, the police acting like that or what's happening in Tijuana.

Nine men were found decapitated in Tijuana over the weekend. Six more people were found dead in the border city Tuesday, including a woman stuffed in a suitcase and a man found stabbed to death next to her. That brought Tijuana's homicide toll to 43 over four days.

What do you think? Are the folks down Mexico way so much more violent than we are? It sounds like just over the border it's total chaos. Does this mean that we're not doing so badly after all? Does it mean those wishing to close the borders have a good point?

How does this situation impact upon our never-ending discussions about arming the good guys and thereby minimizing crime? Aren't the people in Mexico armed? Are there gun control laws in Mexico to blame for all this?

Please leave us a comment with your opinion or observations.


  1. You need to go visit the non-tourist parts or Mexico. I can't even begin to explain or even answer the questions you asked without likely insulting you and your prejudices toward looking out for the under-dog.


  2. From another post.
    "Why not expect, or even demand that the police and other forces of law and order do their job? Let's invest time and money there where it belongs."

    I like how you can disregard your hatred of police corruption when it doesn't support your dislike of guns. I'm all for giving Police funding and numbers they need to combat crimes and enforce laws, without them we live in Anarchy...but also they are populated by humans, and humans can become corrupt. You never want one group of people to have monopoly of force. Monopoly of force and corruption is the big reason why any of this shit is happening in Mexico.

    Leads me to my next point:
    "How does this situation impact upon our never-ending discussions about arming the good guys and thereby minimizing crime? Aren't the people in Mexico armed? Are there gun control laws in Mexico to blame for all this?"

    No, Mexicans AREN'T Armed. Here's another mistep that I think is rather below you, Mike. 30 Seconds on google pulled up this:
    You should be a bit more cautious, Mike, you just created a strawman argument, and pushed ignorance in a post.

    I could dig a little further to try and figure out the exact steps it takes for a Mexican to defend his home, and his life on the streets of his homeland. Still something more powerful than .380 Auto a "military firearm"? (.380 Auto is THE SMALLED defensive cartridge I'd personally carry or allow a loved one to carry, and is slightly less powerful than the .38 Sp +P+ loads the wife and I carry...and I feel under-gunned with that gun)
    "Mexican citizens and "inmigrados" have RKBA in their homes, and only of permitted firearms. The privilege of carrying a firearm outside of one's home is limited to what is authorized by Mexican federal law."
    "There is one gun store in the country (in Mexico City). It takes about a month for your purchase to be approved. Approval will be denied once you own more than 2 handguns or 10 long guns."

    Sounds like more difficult to acquire guns than in Massachusetts, and our lawful gun owning populous is small and eclipsed by the gangs who illegally poses guns and use them to commit crimes and murder.

    Sounds like a Mexican citizen has the right to protect his life on his own property (tho likely most Mexicans don't keep arms at home because of the massive expenses and the fact that your gun needs to be registered with the state...the same state that is cutting people's heads off) but virtually none in public areas (where the police are want to cut your head off)

    "Are there gun control laws in Mexico to blame for all this?"

    In part yes. What else do you do if the Police and Government feel its OK to murder and abuse their powers rather than enforcing the law?

    "Are the folks down Mexico way so much more violent than we are?"

    Nope, just Absolute Power Corrupts Absolutely. The tyrannical police and the gangs are VERY violent. But then again ALL Tyrannical Police and Gangs are extremely violent, no matter what the nation.

    What brings this to critical mass is when the two happen at the same time (Nazi Germany had the SS, but the SS cracked down on crime with an iron fist...Gangs in America are violent, but the Police are after them) and strip the innocent people caught in the crossfire of any means of self-protection.

    make sense to you, Mike?

  3. Weer'd, Thanks for doing that research for me. I thought my question was like laying one up for you to hit out of the ballpark.

    Often, you might notice, my questions are simply that: questions.

    It's just that the summary justice meted out by the cops and the robbers in Mexico was just too good a story not to write about.

  4. Mike,

    This sorta fits in, another car/firearm related item.

    From Foxnews:
    CAPE CORAL, Fla. — Authorities in southwest Florida say an intoxicated man had his 9-year-old son take him on a beer run.

    Cape Coral police arrested 27-year-old Joshua James Fagan last week, after seeing a pickup truck drive onto a median. When officers stopped the truck, Fagan told them he was teaching his son to drive.

    Officers say the father's speech was slurred, his breath smelled of alcohol and he unable to stand without swaying. Police say an open case of Budweiser beer was in the backseat.

    Fagan was charged with cruelty toward a child and allowing an unlicensed minor to drive. He was released from jail on $2,000 bond. Fagan did not return a phone call seeking comment.

    A spokeswoman with the Department of Children and Families says the agency is investigating.

    Now, given previous statements; should we blame this problem on the easy availability of cars, the easy availability of alcohol, or should we talk about the father's incredible lack of judgment and intelligence or is he an addict that should be pitied for putting his son's life and all the other drivers' lives in jeopardy?

    See, this is how I feel about gun control laws, we have clear, easy understood laws that should provide a reason for people not to exhibit

    There are laws against this type of behavior, as Mexico has laws against beheading people, as America has laws against the wrongful use of firearms; question becomes do any of those laws stop those intent on breaking them?
    Nope, only those intent on obeying the laws are stopped by the laws.

    Under your view of firearms, wouldn't we have to restrict access to cars/alcohol, implement childproof devices on cars, etc.
    And in the long run all those laws, devices, etc would do is run up the cost of owning and having a car without stopping any of this type of behavior. It's no different for guns, swords or knives.

  5. Grist for Yon Mill

  6. You can buy any firearm you want in Mexico if you have the money. You can buy any kind of anything you want in Mexico if you have the money. But if you wish to be law abiding, it's well stacked against firearms owners.

    Professor friend of mine is from Mexico City and always carries when back home but he carries mid range stuff so it's no big financial loss if he has to toss it out in the weeds or dump it in a restroom trash can if it looks like their might be a police situation. Cheaper to have throwaways than get out of Mexican Prison.

    Chomp on these facts that I know to be true. A lb of marijuana is 50 bucks in Mexico. An OUNCE of cocaine is 75-100 bucks according to LEO friends. Now look up pricing in the US for those illicit commodities. You think the criminals can't afford guns and obey the gun laws. Drug gangs in Mexico have attacked police stations with machine guns, armored personnel carriers and RPGs.

    Tangentially, a cousin was a Latin American Ford executive and he got mugged at gunpoint in broad daylight across the street from the US embassy about 5 years ago as the embassy marines watched. They couldn't do anything because he wasn't on embassy property.

    You have to go there and spend some time to truly understand. Package tours don't count nor do resort areas.

    The combination of utter poverty, extreme wealth, heavily militarized police and corrupt army, and unending corruption on all levels of the government has to be seen in person for a long enough period of time to see it and to truly understand.

    Third world countries have a lot of adventure and pretty places to offer but they aren't high on the safe and healthy places to live list.

    Like Sub-Saharan Africa with less interesting hunting (to a Texan) and different languages.

    If you have to visit a resort area on the ocean, go to Puerto Angel, not Cabo. Maybe you'll get to see the local law enforcemnt shoot some school teachers protesting that they didn't have enough money for school supplies like happened there last year about this time. Plus there's some excellent fishing and nice beaches and cantinas. Just remember to duck if need be and be careful of what you photograph. Could lose your camera.

  7. i also read that this is becomming a bigger and bigger issue...

    scary shit..

  8. mexico seems to be losing its version of the war on drugs. scary shit indeed; having the equivalent of colombia, only with the equivalent of FARC ascendant and gaining power, right on our southern border, should scare anybody in the USA.

  9. Grist for Yon Mill

    More like pulp, I'm afraid. It's amazing how you guys keep coming up with these fractions-of-one-percent statistics. Bob's the best, but you're pretty good too Weer'd. Yet, when the Brady Bunch come up with bigger numbers they're LIARS.

  10. I didn't post any numerals but I've spent a lot of time in Latin America.

    I said exactly what I meant, and if you doubt me you are welcome to go there and see for yourself.

    I'll even give you tips on cool places in Chiapas, Coahuila, and Saltillo.

    I would advise either carrying a firearm or Vaseline, depending on your preferences. If you were confused about your sexuality and might be a "bottom" in homosexual relationships, you could find out rapidly. Only the catcher is the culero.

    You'll still find out I didn't misrepresent the region either way.

  11. "More like pulp, I'm afraid. It's amazing how you guys keep coming up with these fractions-of-one-percent statistics. Bob's the best, but you're pretty good too Weer'd. Yet, when the Brady Bunch come up with bigger numbers they're LIARS."

    They're not liars, just they like to use suicides and drug dealers to bolster their sub-1% numbers.

    But I do challenge you to show a brady study that utilizes CCW permit numbers (as you can't be a criminal and have a permit because of the background check)

    Seriously, you think our numbers are bad, fight them. Facts don't bend, Mike, and the truth is out there.

    Still your position of "Your numbers are junk, the Barady numbers are also junk...but I'll believe them" does have a nice ring to it!

  12. Mike,

    I'm a little offended here. Can you show one instance where the numbers I posted didn't come from a verifiable source?

    Can you show one instance where the numbers I've posted where cooked in a way to make my position look better?

    There have been several times when I've gone completely the other way in posting numbers....yet you still doubt them.

    I challenge you to post any brady bunch numbers. I will provide point by point analysis, with corresponding verifiable sources, showing how their numbers are slanted.

    The number Robb used for his fraction of one percent analysis came from the government of Florida.

    My fractional numbers came from the state of Texas.
    source -

    Mike, be careful with your implications. I try to be a laid back person but I really don't like the implication that I'm a liar. If you think I am, call me out on the numbers, make me prove them or shut up.

    Personal note, I went to a site and stay on it for just exactly that reason.

    On that thread and subsequent ones, I've posted many times showing FACTS, STATISTICS, NUMBERS, to back up my position. Show me any where in there that I lied. Show me any where on your site that I lied.

  13. Mike,

    Also on a note about paranoia

    Latest 2006 Crimes per 100,000 People:
    Dallas FTW US crime
    Murder: 15 7.6 7
    F. Rape: 53 38 32
    Robbery: 553 220 205
    Agg.Asslt 584 388 336
    Burglary: 1734 1402 813
    Lrc.theft: 4006 3759 2601
    Vehi.Theft:1116 521 501

    Care to guess what cities I live in between?

  14. Wow, Bob, I hadn't been to that OneUtah site since that post was freash. I followed the link because I had forgotten about it.

    Just because I was there I decided to see what some of the last comments were and I found this:

    "Rob C. Says:
    April 17th, 2008 at 8:52 pm
    Thank-you all for providing a lively and informative debate. I don’t have a dog in this fight… just came to watch. I am, however, quickly becoming a pro-gun American. Thanks go to those who have provided proof and links. Cliff, you seem to have your head in the sand."

    I'm of a mind that for every person who speaks there are several who agree with him who don't bother to say anything.

    Glad to see the battle against ignorance can be won!

  15. Weer'd,

    Thanks, that update brought a smile to me. I love it, Cliff was being a jerk (continues to be a jerk) and I decided to be a nuisance. I am incredibly glad that some good came out of my and others efforts.

    If you haven't been there lately, you might not have noticed that Cliff rarely does a 2nd amendment issue post. Guess he got tired of getting his a** handed to him.

    Mike, that site is why I appreciate yours so much. There is a huge difference in the level of respect, courtesy and integrity between your site and 1Utah. Hands down yours is the better site for those reasons.

  16. holy fuck, but that blog thread at was disgusting. seemed like a bunch of amateur statisticians quoting studies at a classroom of colicky two-year-olds.

    "you haven't defined this plain english word, so you're wrong!" / "ok, here's what that simple, common, everyday word means." / "you quoted a dictionary, so that means you don't know what it means, so you're STILL wrong!"

    "i find this quote unbelievable, so until i get shown some evidence for it, i'll insist it's a base lie and go on to slander the man who made it." / [scads of people dropping names and mentioning studies dealing with just such evidence] / "i'm too busy to read my own blog, so i'll just go right on believing there's no evidence for that claim."

    great caesar's ghost, but such people can give me headaches. i had to quit reading the thread partway through, because the constant migraine-saluting was messing up my glasses.

  17. Weer'd said, "Still your position of "Your numbers are junk, the Barady numbers are also junk...but I'll believe them" does have a nice ring to it!"

    I don't think I said I'd believe the Brady numbers. I take all the stats with a big grain of salt.

    Bob, You said, "Mike, be careful with your implications. I try to be a laid back person but I really don't like the implication that I'm a liar."

    Now, just simmer down, pard. No one's implying anything. You put a lot more faith in stats than I do. That's the diff.

    Tom, I realize you haven't been posting numbers. I appreciate your personal experiences.

  18. Sorry Mike, You said in another thread you value opinions that agree with you, while discarding ones you disagree with. Of course you believe in Paul Helmke's opinions (as wrong, and proven wrong as they are) so that's the phenomenon I was referencing.

    Pardon any confusion.