Homicides at Brazil reach historic highEL PAÍS #EL_PAFebruary 11, 2019
According to the latest available data, from 2012, there were 42,416 deaths that year due to gunshot wounds – the worst statistic since 1980, when the Health Ministry began the data series for a so-called “Map of Violence.” Meanwhile, Brazil’s parliament has begun debating a proposal to loosen restrictions on the sale of firearms.
The report from the Map of Violence, which was presented on Thursday, offers more alarming information: there is an upward trend in gun-related deaths among black Brazilians.
The number of white individuals who died in incidents involving firearms fell by 23 percent between 2003 and 2012, while the number of blacks who died in the same way increased by 14.1 percent.
Martin Sampaio, coordinator of the Human Rights Commission at Ordem dos Advogados do Brasil São Paulo (OABSP), says the report “refutes the myth of racial democracy in Brazil.”
“In theory, the wealthier sectors have two levels of security at their disposal: public and private.
“Brazil kills [its citizens] due to the lack of education and dignified housing here; because of the public health system, which is a veritable killing factory; and the lack of security,” says Débora da Silva, a founder of Mães de Maio, a group of mothers whose children have been victims of police brutality.
This group has been baptized with the sinister nickname “the bullet camp.” The measure, which will be put to a vote within three or four months, will presumably pass, given that the balance of power in Congress has shifted to the right since the last elections.
The figures come at a time when congressmen, backed by gun lobbies, want to loosen restrictions on firearm sales
Despite the new law, gun-related deaths have been on the rise since 1980.
The report presented on Thursday highlights “the important preventive value of gun-control policies.” According to the statistical data, the law has helped save 170,000 lives.