Gun Buyback Program Up for Reconsideration; Criminals Giggle
The gun buyback program in the city of Saint Louis is being reconsidered by the police board today. The Post-Dispatch has the story. This is unfortunate, because the recent decision to kill it was a pleasant surprise — an example of officials putting facts before politics.
The fact is that gun buyback programs do not in any way succeed in doing what their supporters claim they are intended to do — reduce crime and increase safety. Studies of these programs in other areas have shown that the guns turned in are often extremely old or broken. More importantly, by creating a floor value for guns above what the market sets (i.e. a handgun is worth $50 no matter what condition it’s in), buyback programs make gun ownership easier and more affordable, which is fine with me, but I doubt this is what the programs’ supporters are intending to accomplish. Here’s to hoping that facts and studies again trump feel-good policies at today’s meeting.