Gun Exchange Program > Gun Buyback Program?

Author: Imabench ,

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  • Imabench
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    Ever since Beto O'Rourke announced his intention to have a forced gun buyback for Assault weapons and Ak 47's (An idea I dont think will even have any effect, let alone be legal) there's this other idea that I've been weighing around in my head that might be something Dems and the GOP could actually go with. The overall idea is that rather then having a gun buyback program, where the government gives cash for guns they want to see off the streets and offer market value for them, to instead use a gun exchange program. In this program, people who own guns that the US or the public has, for whatever reason, decided they dont want out on the streets, can bring in those guns and trade them for different guns and ammunition, where the exchange is in their favor and is still optional. 

    Here's what im basing this off of

    1 - Democrats seem to have it out for AR15's and any weapon that looks like it could be used by the military 
    2 - Democrats are overall very okay with the idea of citizens owning pistols and handguns 
    3 - Republicans are very against any program that forces citizens to give up or exchange weapons that were legally purchased
    4 - Republicans are against any program that would seemingly be in violation of the broad rights defended by the 2nd Amendment
    5 - Republicans are wary of what the government would decide is 'fair value' compensation for the guns they want out of private ownership. 

    A gun buyback program, especially one that is forced and not optional for gun owners to decline, would run into a literal fuckton of problems in terms of becoming law, staying legal, and being enforced and carried out. A gun exchange program on the other hand could incentivize owners of AR15's and other 'scary' weapons to trade in those guns in exchange for more socially acceptable guns, and do so at a rate that financially is more in their favor. An AR-15 goes for about $700 to $2500 depending on options/upgrades that go with the gun. The average rifle goes for $600 to $1000, while shotguns go for $500 to $800. (based on a quick google search and admittedly not much deeper research). Pistols and handguns come in at the cheapest, ranging from $250 to $400 

    In a hypothetical Gun Exchange Program where sellers get 15% more credit than the market value of their gun (to incentivize AR15 owners to sell their guns for a good deal), An owner of an AR-15 that is worth $1500 could trade that in for ANY of the following options: ($1500 +15% = $1725 to spend)

    - 2 Hunting Rifles priced at $850 each
    - 1 Hunting Rifle, 1 Shotgun, and 1 Pistol (Priced $800, $600, and $300 respectively)
    - 2 Shotguns at $650 each and a very high quality pistol for $400
    - 4 high quality handguns at $400 each with $125 left over for ammo
    - 6 basic handguns at $250 each with $225 left over for ammo
    - $1725 worth of ammunition for other guns that the gun owner also owns besides the AR15

    Not only would this help get the 'bad guns' that Dems seems to have a huge issue with off the streets, it would not infringe on 2nd Amendment rights since it does not force people to make the exchange, and also allows sellers to exchange those guns for other guns as part of their 2nd Amendment right. The rifles and shotguns and pistols could come from leftover military supplies not being used (mainly handguns for this one) or weapons that local law enforcement took as part of criminal proceedings they do all the time (Rifles and other shotguns). A 15% bonus would incentivize gun owners to consider making the exchange since the exchange is considerably designed in their favor where they could trade in an AR-15 for anywhere from 2 to 6 other guns + ammo with cash left over. 

    This is still something Im really toying with because there doesnt seem to be a lot of instances of this being tried in the US. All the research I can find only points to gun buyback programs where gun owners turn in weapons for straight cash rather then exchanging them for other firearms. Just from the details that I have described about this though, would you guys support an idea along these lines? If so or not, please explain why and list your political ideology with it, I kind of want to see where people with different views would stand on an idea like this


  • Greyparrot
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    --> @Imabench
    This is a fantastic idea, but would never go over well with the crowd that hates all guns, not just AR-15s.


  • TheDredPriateRoberts
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    --> @Imabench
    that's probably the most creative idea I have ever heard,  sorry I have a but here, but when looking at voluntary buy backs (how you buy something back you never owned makes no sense) they trade in broken, or junk guns for more money than they would get otherwise.

    Here's an example 
    this fires the same round as an ar15  .223/5.56
    same gun different cosmetics

    people being slick, crafty whatever might sell their ar depending on how much they could get and then upgrade with something similar.
    I appreciate the thoughtful idea you presented and I hate to be a downer but being the devil's advocate any programs like this will be taken advantage of and with the unintended consequences will make what is attempting to be fixed, worse imo

    Consider the NY cosmetics bans.  Stocks and parts were redesigned to be legal and yet virtually the same thing as what was attempted to be banned.  All these things ever end up doing is creating new markets and products.  Bump stock is a pretty good example I would say, which apparently may make a come back if the rumors are true, that the courts says they have to jurisdiction over them, something like that anyway.

    I track gun prices and gun parts, more of a curiosity but if there's a great deal I may take advantage of that.  The prices are at an all time low.  You can get an ar15 for under $400  if you buy the parts and assemble it yourself, waiting for rebates, sales etc, it would be closer to $300.  It's almost to the point that it's cheaper to buy an ar then a decent semi auto handgun.  Supply and demand, bottom line.  Colt can no longer sell their very expensive ar rifles to make them financially viable to keep producing for civilians.  So they stopped making them, the market made them stop.
    Ironically where Obama was the best president for the gun manufacturers, Trump is one of the worst, go figure.

    If someone has spent $1500 on an ar they are a serious enthusiast and a serious gun owner.  Of all the people to fear or be concerned about, this person would not be one of them.
  • bmdrocks21
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    --> @Imabench
    Would this plan also involve a ban on selling more AR-15's? It seems like it would have to.
  • bmdrocks21
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    Also, would this be market value at the time the gun buyback is started? Because this would inevitably raise the price of an AR-15.
  • dustryder
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    I don't see the point. I'm assuming the intent is to switch out semi-automatics for semi-automatics that just look different? In which case you've enacted an expensive program which doesn't actually functionally do anything. I would understand if the intent was to switch out semi-automatics for pump-action or lever action guns. But you may as well shovel money in a bonfire otherwise.
  • Imabench
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    --> @Greyparrot
    Well naturally this idea wouldnt fly with 100% of people, especially those who care about gun control/gun rights as one of their top issues. 

    The overall goal was a middle-of-the-road idea that could be [potentially supported by people on different sides of the political spectrum, rather then continue the current discourse of 'Take All Guns' vs 'Guns For Everyone' which so far is leading us nowhere and just turns every mass shooting event into a politicized shitfest
  • Imabench
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    --> @bmdrocks21
    Solid details. Thanks for the insight, my knowledge of what usually transpires with gun buyback programs is effectively nothing. 

    In light that most guns traded in are already busted, the '$1500' mark I initially went with at first could instead be replaced with whatever value the gun is worth depending on condition, with the 15% added on top of that, rather then a flat $1500 benchmark to start with..... 
  • Imabench
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    --> @bmdrocks21
    Would this plan also involve a ban on selling more AR-15's? It seems like it would have to.
    I actually don't think it would have to because a restriction on additional manufacturing of more AR15's could start to get entangled in the legality of the 2nd Amendment, and avoiding a question over legality that could be inflamed by personal political stances was what this proposal is meant to avoid in the first place. 

    Also, would this be market value at the time the gun buyback is started? Because this would inevitably raise the price of an AR-15.
    DredPirates mentioned good info that most guns turned in for buyback programs are often busted or damaged, so the price offered in exchange for the devices would be whatever they are worth + 15% added on, not the original $1500 flat price +15% I initially proposed
  • Imabench
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    --> @dustryder
    . I'm assuming the intent is to switch out semi-automatics for semi-automatics that just look different?
    Its mainly to pacify Dems who want to continue their crusade against the AR 15 and other weapons that have been deemed 'unnecessary' while still preserving 2nd amendment rights and actually incentivizing AR 15 owners to make the exchange since they would be getting good market value for it in exchange that can be used to purchase other guns, ammo, accessories, etc. 

    But you may as well shovel money in a bonfire otherwise.
    It wouldnt be nearly that expensive.... Gun buyback programs that have been tried in major cities usually only cost a couple hundred thousand dollars depending on the scope of the buybacks and whatnot, a nationwide program that targets mainly AR15's and the more controversial weapons that can be legally purchased would hypothetically only run a cost of $10 million or so at the most. That cost could be lowered if the guns offered in exchange came from excess armaments held by the US military as well
  • bmdrocks21
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    --> @Imabench
    Well, if they could keep selling and manufacturing AR-15s, what would keep me from buying them and selling them back to the government for a 15% profit?

  • Imabench
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    --> @bmdrocks21
    The +15% credit in addition to what you get for the value of the gun your turning in can only be used for purchasing other guns, you dont get it all back in straight cash 
  • TheDredPriateRoberts
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    --> @Imabench
    Here is some potential I just thought about based on your idea.  It's a bit off topic but a buy out system (buy out because you can't buy back something you never owned, people just don't like that term) for people who panic purchase or regret their purchase, estates or families of the deceased who now have to deal with guns and don't want to.  For instance I have a couple of guns that I don't really use or have much interest in.  I could take them to a pawn shop or try to sell them myself but these are not expensive guns and I'd rather keep them then take a big loss on selling them.  Since what I might get is pretty small, $100 or less it's not worth the time or effort for me when I can just keep them and who knows maybe at some point I'll give them away or something.  Now if I could get close to what I paid for them then I would probably sell them.  This is probably true for other people, even people who have purchased inexpensive ar's etc.  If that idea could be worked out, it could be useful I think.
  • ResurgetExFavilla
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    --> @Imabench
    I disagree with this because the fixation of AR-15s and 'assault riffles' is retarded. Handguns are by far the most dangerous guns when it comes to homicides, statistically. AR-15s and other scary-looking guns are a footnote, which is why countries like Portugal make it harder to buy handguns than rifles, requiring additional licensing. Trying to swap out guns that are statistically used in very few shootings in order to flood the market with weapons responsible for the vast majority of gun deaths just seems like the worst policy imaginable to me, regardless of its political appeal. I would support stricter rules on handguns and less stringent ones on 'scary' weapons.
  • Athias
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    --> @Imabench
    The overall idea is that rather then having a gun buyback program, where the government gives cash for guns they want to see off the streets and offer market value for them, to instead use a gun exchange program. In this program, people who own guns that the US or the public has, for whatever reason, decided they dont want out on the streets, can bring in those guns and trade them for different guns and ammunition, where the exchange is in their favor and is still optional. 
    So trade in my "Bugatti' for a "Ford Sienta"? No thank you.

  • Imabench
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    --> @ResurgetExFavilla
    I would support stricter rules on handguns and less stringent ones on 'scary' weapons.
    I do to a degree as well, but the problem is that the GOP will fiercely object to stricter handgun rules while the Democrats will fiercely object to laxer rules on guns that have arbitrarily been deemed 'scary'.... The whole point of this proposal is to try to circumvent the asinine levels of political objection that both parties raise over gun law proposals and make a bit of progress in resolving differences both sides have over gun laws in the country.  
  • Imabench
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    --> @Athias
    Kind of missed the point there by not reading all the way through it, but the point is using your example that you would be trading in a pricey gun for numerous lesser but still fairly decent guns, at a good price that benefits you and also is optional and not forced
  • TheDredPriateRoberts
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    --> @Athias
    that's not how I understand his idea would work, there is a "blue book" for used guns.  A lot of it is based on supply, demand what new ones of the same model sell for etc.  If you were to sell the gun to a pawn shop you wouldn't get much at all but that's how that business operates.  Local gun shops will also take them on trade or buy them, but at a discount naturally since they need a profit margin resell them.  As I understand his idea the program would essentially be competing in the used gun market specifically for the scary rifles in the hopes it would reduce the number of them in circulation.  
  • Castin
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    My first thought is that people who own AR-15's are likely to already own other guns, and good ones. Would they trade their AR in for a pistol and shotgun when they already have three pistols and two shotguns? It's the AR that is filling a niche in their collection.

    But it's a very interesting idea. It certainly has more merit and feasibility than a direct buyback, which can never work in America like it did in Australia.

  • TheDredPriateRoberts
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    --> @Castin
    a forced buy back, again how do you buy back something you never owned.....would never work in the U.S.
    imo as a result of the ban threats etc many more versions of the scary black gun are gaining in popularity which means lower prices and more availability.  For instance the AR9, .224, 300 blackout, .224 wylde, AR in 10mm, 45 acp, AR10, 454, probably some others I have forgotten.
    except for a couple of them they all use the same lower, all you have to do is swap out the upper which is the barrel and bolt carrier group.  BTW the lower is very easy to assemble, I've done it myself, check youtube.

    the buyout program would only work in certain and probably rare instances.  There is a reason the ar platform is called leggos for adults.

    oh btw I heard Sept was a record breaking month for background checks, you can thank Beta and Dumbassacuss,  more gun ban talk, restrictions = increase sales, thought that was obvious after 8 years of the best gun salesman ever, guess they just can't help shooting themselves in the foot, pun intended.

  • Castin
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    --> @TheDredPriateRoberts
    Did you @ me by mistake? I don't understand the relationship between your post and my post.
  • TheDredPriateRoberts
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    --> @Castin
    you said a buyout wouldn't work in the U.S. which I agreed and expanded a bit on.
    and 
    It's the AR that is filling a niche in their collection.
    thus the many options currently available in the ar platform

    the continued bungling by the democrats pandering to the anti gun crowd which actually increases sales.



  • Castin
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    --> @TheDredPriateRoberts
    Ah okay. My bad. The whole "you've obviously never worked there" thing made me think your stance was adversarial or something, I guess.

    There is still the problem of this AR tunnel vision, though. Sure, a higher percentage of mass shootings are caused by AR's, but they don't even account for 5% of all gun deaths in America as a whole.

  • TheDredPriateRoberts
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    --> @Castin
    they are not a statistical problem and they should be honest, if it wasn't the ar it would be something else.  all these voids they create are filled with something else very similar, bump stock is a prime example of that.  NY banded pistol grips because well....you know....pistol grips are deadly?  anyway they redesigned the stock to be "legal" and still have essentially a pistol grip, go figure.
    Because of Trump the gun market was hurting, until September that is, best thing to lower sales is just keeping your mouth shut about guns I guess.
  • Castin
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    --> @TheDredPriateRoberts
    It's important to remember that their hearts are in the right place. They just want us all to be safer. They want to stop more people from losing their lives. They want to be able to send their kids to school without worrying about their safety. They want to be able to go to a concert or a WalMart without fear of being shot and killed.