An El Paso Times reporter has misled her readers by falsely stating the percentage of crime guns recovered at Mexican crime scenes traced to U.S. Sources.
You write “More than 68 percent of the weapons recovered at Mexican crime scenes over a five-year period were traced to U.S. manufacturers or U.S. dealers who import firearms, according to statistics of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives,” Gun Rights Examiner advised reporter Diana Washington Valdez yesterday by email.
“Your lede is wrong and misleading,” Valdez was advised. “It’s not 68 percent of weapons recovered, it’s 68 percent of weapons submitted for tracing, which your second paragraph confirms. The total number recovered in Mexico could pan out very differently, depending on how many have not been submitted to the U.S. for tracing.
“This has been pointed out many times over the past few years, as has its exploitation by those relying on people who don’t know the difference to justify further U.S. gun control’ laws,” the advisory email continued.
“Will you issue a clarification?” she was asked.
At this writing, and despite numerous readers pointing out the false information in comments to her story, Valdez and her paper have not issued a correction or retraction.
This has been a point raised in this column for years, when the number being floated by the anti-gunners was “95 to 100 percent,” then 90 percent, then 80 and so on. Not unsurprisingly to those who keep tabs on such characters, apparatchiks perpetrating the funny numbers dismissed having their fraud exposed as “a red herring.”
That “Authorized Journalist” Valdez, a professional reporter working the cartel crime beat who has the resources of a newspaper and editorial staff at her disposal, continues to parrot bad numbers, particularly this late in the game, is troubling, and that the error has been allowed to stand makes this being mere oversight or a mistake seem more remote the longer it remains unaddressed.
Especially for those of us who have long been documenting why the phony numbers were so important to some factions.
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