Sunday, June 5, 2016

Gun Buybacks

The other day at work I looked out the window to see a bus (not the one pictured) parked in the middle of the park across the street. It sat there all day. It turned out to be a police bus, running a gun buyback program.

If you're unfamiliar with the concept, the idea is to "get guns off the streets" by buying them and destroying them. The implementation, however, is a ludicrous waste of taxpayer dollars. First off, the taxpayer pays an average of $135 per weapon. Secondly, there is the cost of paying a bus full of police to sit around all day, every day. The gun buyback programs (at least around here) involve a police bus sitting for a month, in different locations.

Let's go over some of the problems.

Private property is taken without fair market compensation to the owner. If the gun is legally owned, the owner could have sold it to a federally licensed firearm dealer, usually for far more money than the police pay. For instance, the police will pay $150 for a revolver, which might bring $300-$1000 or more at a dealer.

The gun buyback programs con the public. They do not tell the gun owners that they can dispose of unwanted guns in legal ways that would make them more money. They do not tell them that if they have a gun that needs to be secured, they can do so for free through the National Shooting Sports Foundation's Child Safe program.

Gun buyback programs are an excellent way for criminals to have the police dispose of evidence for them. By bringing a crime gun to a gun buyback program, the criminal is immune from prosecution, and the police legally cannot use the weapon as evidence. What a win for criminals!

Gun buybacks are illegal in many states (including New Jersey), yet the state not only fails to prosecute, but encourages them.

They encourage other crimes. For instance, one news story includes a woman who brought in her ex husband's firearms because she didn't want him to have guns. So we have a man whose legally owned property was stolen with approval and assistance form police (I'm fairly sure he didn't even receive the money the ex wife received from the police).

The guns destroyed are often family heirlooms, of personal or historic value.

They are ineffective at reducing violent crime. Let's face it, if you're someone who's interested in using a gun criminally, why would you turn it in (unless you already used it and want the evidence gone). Instead the guns turned in are ones which would never be used in a crime anyway (which, truth be told, is the mast majority of guns anyway).


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