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Saturday, September 25, 2010

Criminal violence and Latin America

  The headlines are constant: Drug violence and general criminality are rampant and endemic throughout Mexico and Central America and, increasingly, in various parts of South America. An AP story today talks about a Caribbean "crime wave" reputedly tied to U.S. deportations of convicted felon illegal migrants.
  The picture is much bigger than this, more systemic. The United States has a culture of violence connected to a market for guns and a popular culture than romanticizes violence, gore and guns. We are exporting that culture wholesale around the world via the popular media (films, books, comic books, the Internet, video games, etc.). We also export weapons, and now deport felons, and our gang problem is now their gang problem, especially in Mexico and the central American capital cities. Why is it any surprise that our neighbors to the south are being inundated with our exports/deports? The problem is so overwhelming now that it will likely take decades to address and begin to resolve.

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