Another municipality enticed its residents to turn in valuable guns for $60 a pop. What will they do with those “unwanted” guns? Oh, you know, just the usual … destroy them. Romeoville police were allowed to buy up to three firearms at 60 bucks a piece to get “guns off the streets” in their latest gun buyback.
I’m actually quite sick of writing about this topic, and I’ve done so for the past couple of years since it’s really become a nationwide fad. Instead of continuing on with a rant explaining why this is stupid, I want to attempt some intelligent discussion about what we can do instead of a gun buyback, so we can minimize the amount of damage done.
The main cited reason for hosting these gun buybacks is to “get guns off the streets.” I do want to say right here, that whatever your reasoning behind offering $60/gun to someone is, you are likely ripping that person off, whether or not you know it, and ignorance on this matter is not bliss.
It is my goal to get community leaders to think outside the box a bit with this article. That way, maybe they would stop destroying valuable pieces of history, like World War II relics, or any other guns that may not have seen the light of day for five decades, like we saw in Romeoville. Please share this on your social media profiles to help me get the message out.
Option 1) Call a subject matter expert before you destroy:
This option is not ideal, but if you absolutely must destroy the guns, which doesn’t make a lot of sense as we’ll discover soon enough, at least get them appraised first to find out if any of them are museum quality gems.
One of the cops from Romeoville mentioned that many of the guns were WWII era firearms. Can you imagine if it was a gun with only a few in existance and you plan to destroy it?
If for no other reason than historical value alone, a gun like that should be saved and placed into a museum to make sure generations of people can learn from it.
If someone walks in with a $20,000 relic, and you offer that person $60, you’re doing not only yourself a disservice, but you’re ripping off the former owner of the gun. Is that who you want to be? A thief?
Tell me something, when was the last time a WWII gun was used in a killing spree?
Instead of destroying something potentially priceless, ask a firearms expert to come down to evaluate each of the firearms that come in. If you insist on doing the buyback, which I hope you won’t after you realize you’re committing a crime by offering a fixed price for every gun that walks through the door regardless of value, at least get the WWII guns appraised so you can save them.
Once something’s destroyed, it’s gone forever.
Option 2) Continue on with your gun buyback, then sell them back to honest Americans:
I know, I know, it’s a hard thing to imagine right now, but you can actually make money on those guns. Listen to what I’m about to say very carefully, there are millions of gun owners in this country. If we were a problem, you’d know it by now.
So, sell them back to us. Sell the guns to people who will appreciate them via a gun auction. People still have to do their background check, so you know if a convicted felon tries to buy a gun, and will have the opportunity to do something about it.
Why do we want to own guns? For self-defense, hunting, or just plain old target shooting. Some of us can’t afford an expensive firearm, but we can afford a cheap one that may have been bought at an auction.
Let us buy it. It’s a win-win situation. You get “guns off the streets” from someone who forgot they owned a gun and to make some money for your town. And, we can get an affordable firearm for self-defense and will actually take care of it and not forget it’s there.
As an added benefit, you can have a qualified instructor come down and give a short lesson on firearm safety in exchange for passing out some business cards. Most gun instructors I know would jump at the opportunity to get some free press, and show that they know what they’re talking about.
Option 3) Don’t do the buyback at all, but encourage people to go into a gun store:
If you’re against making money directly, then how about sending those people with the guns to other people who know about guns so they can make money selling them to decent people who also like guns?
Imagine the impact this could have on your local economy. There are gun shops in just about every town across the nation. You can still send the police to the gun store in case of any stolen, or “no questions asked” guns, or if it’ll make the folks feel more comfy about walking into a gun shop.
But, allow them the opportunity to get some more cash in their pocket, by putting cash in the pockets of the gun shop to resell.
People have a right to get a decent price for their firearms. If someone brings in one of Colt’s Snake Guns, clueless about what it’s worth, and they get $60 for it, that’s not cool. People who don’t know anything about guns, for whatever reason, deserve the right to learn about it, before they sell.
By not giving them that opportunity to get closer to what it’s actually worth, is taking advantage of them.
Option 4) Continue on as usual:
Lastly, you could continue on this path. You can continue to rip decent folks off by offering them $60 for guns that are worth a lot more, and fail to put money back into your town.
This decision is totally up to you. But, this one makes the least amount of sense, because destroying something that could improve the economy or teach others about history is asinine in more ways than one.
It’s my hope that this opens up your eyes about why it’s not a good idea to blindly destroy guns. Many of them have historical value that can be enjoyed in a museum, while others have economic value that can give a nice boost to your overall budget or deficit.
Destroying the guns is not the answer, letting someone own them who will actually take care of them is.
What is your take on gun buybacks? Have you ever participated in one? Do you think they’re wasteful like I do? Let me know in the comments below.