The pointlessness of gun buyback programs

There is a reason that researchers don't find that gun buyback programs reduce crime.  1) Most of the guns sold don't work. 2) It is possible that the gun buyback programs actually allow those giving up the guns to buy money to buy working guns.  3) The gun buyback program can actually help criminals get rid of guns that they have used in crime and to get rid of them in a way that allows them to make some money off them.

There is a recent example in Chicago that illustrates these points.  I wonder how much money gun dealers have made from these buyback programs over the years.  From the Chicago Sun Times:

Sixty of the guns and several BB guns were turned in by the Champaign-based Guns Save Life. In return, the group received $6,240 in gift cards, said John Boch, president of the group. . . .
Most of the money will go toward buying ammunition for an NRA youth camp in Bloomington. The rest will pay for four bolt-action rifles that will be given away to campers. . . .
Vandermyde said he’s heard that gun-shop owners also have used the annual gun turn-in for profit.
Vandermyde said he was told one suburban gun dealer imported junk rifles for less than $50 each and received $100 gift cards for each of them.
“It’s comical,” he said.
But the city doesn’t think so.
“We host the gun turn-in event on an annual basis to encourage residents to turn in their guns so we can take guns off the street and it’s unfortunate that this group is abusing a program intended to increase the safety of our communities,” said Melissa Stratton, a police spokeswoman.
Boch said he doesn’t think the crooks who have pushed the number of Chicago’s homicides to 38 percent over last year’s total are the ones handing over their weapons.
“If you were a criminal, you would be a fool to go there with the police presence,” he said. “What criminal would turn in the tool he uses to do his trade for a $100 card?” . . .
It should be noted that the police broke their promise not to ask where the guns came from in the Guns Save Life group's case.

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Blogger Jerome East said...

An even bigger issue in my opinion is the people who ate turning over their only means of self defense because some politician or policeman convinces them it's the right thing to do. The better solution to our crime problem would be getting rid of the laws that limit a persons right to defend themselves and their property without fear of criminal and/or civil liability.

4 or 5 years of criminals getting killed on a regular basis might get a point across that our catch and release criminal justice system has failed on, which is that actions have consequences

7/01/2012 3:25 AM  

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