Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Menino's Gun Shop

...will once again be open for business.

Boston officials launch gun buyback program

By Suzanne Smalley, Globe Staff

City and police officials and community leaders announced this morning that a gun buyback program is restarting in Boston.

They announced that about $40,000 has been raised for the program, under which people who turn in guns will be given $200 in Target gift cards.

$200? Is that for long guns as well as handguns? Becuase, if that's the case, then I've got some shopping to do. I see that Four Seasons and Gun and Sport North both have quite a few used rifles and shotguns listed for $150 or less. $400 in Target gift cards for the price of two $99 shotguns? Not too shabby.

Officials are opting for gift cards instead of cash because criminologists have found that in previous buyback programs, some people used the buyback money to purchase newer guns.

Or sneakers, or crack, or videogames, or booze, or smokes, or...`

And, you know there's NO WAY an unscrupulous individual could unload a $200 gift card on the street for $100 in cash (with which to purchase any of the aforementioned items).


Simply not possible.

The turned-in guns will be traced to try to connect them to crimes, officials said, but no identification will be required of people who hand in guns, and they will not be charged with possession.

And, what better way to "connect them to crimes" than by letting their criminal owners (you know, the ones COMMITTING THE CRIMES) walk away with 200 bucks, no questions asked?

The buyback program is the latest effort to make it appear as if our elected officials are doing anything to cut gun violence in the city. It reprises a city effort that from 1993 through 1996 collected 2,800 guns by offering $50 cash for each weapon.

So, suppose I were set up a table outside the police station on the day of the gun buyback, with a stack of FA-10 forms and a sign that reads:

Are you the legal owner of the
gun you're turning in today?

Think it might be worth more than $200?

Let me make you an offer.

Do you think the city, in the interest of doing what's best "for the children", would applaud my efforts at making this gun buyback more attractive to some folks who might want to rid their homes of unwanted firearms that might otherwise be stumbled upon by curious youngsters?

Yeah...me neither.