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