Wednesday, April 15, 2009


Today's front page photo on the Times included a factoid that caught me by surprise... "Houston, the capital of Texas has more than 1500 licensed gun dealers..." - but then, what else would one expect from the great state of Texas.

Although federal agents say licensed dealers are the source of most guns going to Mexico, some come from private sellers at gun shows, where even noncitizens can buy guns. Dozens of shows are held each year across Texas, New Mexico and Arizona. At a recent show in Pharr, Tex., another border town, a college freshman with a wispy beard arrived with two AR-15 rifles strapped to his body, spidery black guns designed for combat, tricked out with features that soldiers prize: collapsible stocks, pistol grips, extra long magazines. The student, who asked to be identified only as Shane, was asking $1,900 for one of his rifles. As for paper work, he wanted only a handwritten receipt with the buyer’s name and address. He was not worried, he said, about the gun’s falling into the hands of drug cartels in Mexico.
“They are going to get their guns either way,” he said. “The only thing that a ban is going to stop is good people being able to get a gun.”

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