I don't watch the news. They all have an agenda. As I said a lot of the firearms siezed are indeed stolen due to careless owners. I do not know what the ratio of illegal Mexican guns vs. stolen guns are and since I have never seen statistics I cannot comment. Gun laws are way too lax and in my opinion before you are to take a firearm home after purchase a local policeman would stop by your home and inspect it for safety (a pre-installed, anchor bolted safe should be part of that criteria), as they do in some countries like South Africa.There are laws against leaving firearms in your car but the penalty for doing so is a joke. If gun owners refuse to accept the huge responsibility that comes with firearm ownership, then stiff sentencing should help persuade them to be more responsible. And if you are found neglegent once, all weapons are confiscated, banned from owning firearms ever again and sent to prison. If your kid shoots himself/herself with your gun - culpabale homicide minimum.
Guns as a self defense weapon:
It is true that the average gun owner will not be able to use his sidearm if surprised by thugs carrying firearms or at close range. Even an experienced guy like me was surprised in a fire escape in Harlem by three thugs armed with pistols. Had I been armed it would have made no difference for my safety. I may have killed one or two but I most definitely would have been killed or wounded (more likely killed) in such a confined area, and my side arm would now have added to the thug arsenal, I have no doubt. It's why I also believe it's not a good idea for the average Joe to be able to carry a concealed firearm unless he has undergone extensive certification. There have been a number of instances where armed citizens have saved the day, but the cases are few. While I Was working in the private sector I only carried (even though I had a CCW permit) while I was working or deployed. Since I no longer work in that capacity I do not ever feel the need to carry a weapon again (unless somehow I'm thrust into a war zone). For me my best defense has always been situational awareness and trying to avoid getting into bad situations in the first place. However, at home the right firearm can be an excellent tool for defense. But don't only depend on the weapon, there are at least a dozen other precautions to take which you should rely on first. Using an assualt rifle for home defense (unless you're on a ranch or farm) is madness and I would not recommend hand guns either : most homes in the US have flimsy sheet rock walls offerimg no barrier for the neighbors should your bullets go stray, that is why a shotgun is a far better option - shot quickly loses energy after 15-20 yds, dependimg on the shot size.
in the end US gun laws are severely lacking, at least now in some states they are taking the lead with new legislation, like requiring a driver's liscence to purchase ammunition- which I am thrilled about.
By the way, in most states it is illegal to wear a ballistic vest unless you have authorization.
Do you know their names? If you don't want to disclose that imfo I understand but ask them if they know "Toothless". In my old life I knew a few lads from Herefordshire.