Friday, May 16, 2014

WI Update: Cheap Gun Opportunity This Saturday, 17 May 2014 Milwaukee

There will be a gun turn in event in Milwaukee on Saturday, 17 May,  2014.  While these events are commonly labeled with the propaganda term "buyback" the guns were never owned by the people attempting to buy them.

The event will be held at Tabernacle Community Baptist Church, 2500 W. Medford Ave.  The article indicates that it is in a high crime neighborhood.

The event is scheduled to run from 10 am to 2 pm. People often turn up early at these events.

The incentives for the gun turn in are as follows.  From
$53,000 was raised for the gun buy-back program. Here’s the breakdown of what you’ll receive for various weapons:
  • $50 bank card for the return of a shotgun or rifle
  • $100 bank card for the return of a handgun
  • $200 bank card for the return of an assault weapon
IMPORTANT: All firearms must be unloaded, the magazine must be outside of the firearm, and ammunition WILL NOT be accepted.
This may be the first gun turn in event in Milwaukee since 2005.  Wisconsin is a gun friendly state, with a high percentage of avid deer and duck hunters, as well as offering good goose, ruffed grouse, turkey, bear, squirrel, rabbit and pheasant hunting.    The Milwaukee Journal ran a famous column by Gordon Macquarrie until 1956, glorifying the the hunting camp in northern Wisconsin.  On the start of deer season, the freeways are often  jammed with hunters heading north to the hunting camps.    It is likely that there are numerous attics in Milwaukee with forgotten treasures that belonged to grandpa or even great-grandpa.

The potential for valuable old guns being turned in is very large.    I would be surprised if there were no Savage model 99 deer rifles or Winchester model 1897 shotguns turned in.   There will likely be some decent double barreled shotguns; maybe even a drilling that a German immigrant brought over from the old country.   Milwaukee supplied many WWII soldiers, and there is a good chance that WWII trophy Lugers, P-38s, Mausers, Enfields, and Springfields will turn up.  Up until 1968, many of these guns were available mail order for a few dollars.   I will be surprised if at least one M1 carbine and one M1 Garand are not turned in.

Private sales are legal in Wisconsin, but the Milwaukee police chief, Ed Flynn is infamous for his animosity to armed citizens.   In 2009, before the passage of the shall issue law in Wisconsin, Chief Flynn said, as recorded on

"My message to my troops is if you see anybody carrying a gun on the streets of Milwaukee, we'll put them on the ground, take the gun away and then decide whether you have a right to carry it."

Chief Flynn was imported from Massachusetts.  It is not so easy to find his intolerant attitude in Wisconsin.  The law has been clarified since that point, and several settlements have been paid to citizens who were falsely arrested while legally carrying guns.   It would be well for private buyers to have recorders and to operate in pairs so as to deter police misconduct.

To give an idea of what sort of guns might come into this turn in, consider that Chief Flynn is sitting on about $2,000,000 worth of guns that have already been turned in, and which Wisconsin law makes difficult for the authorities to sell.

If there is much of a turn out at the turn in, private buyers should look for easy places for people to park so that the merchandise can be looked at prior to purchase.  Often people bring several guns to these turn in events.   As the event is only scheduled for four hours at one location, do not be surprised if there are long lines of people waiting to turn in guns, and many disappointed people when the organizers run out of money.   Both situations bode well for private purchasers.

On there is some discussion of private buyers preparing to be there. 

You might want to read about the Phoenix event to see how things were handled there.

Be prepared for a percentage of people who refuse to talk to anyone but police.  All the private buyers that I saw in Phoenix were very polite and let these ideologically driven people turn in their guns for a fraction of what they would be worth on the open market.

Signs are helpful, as are good grooming, cash, and a friendly attitude.  Dale Carnegie's advise for dealing with people works very well.

Across the country, communities, police departments and churches are sponsoring gun turn-ins to get "guns off the street". At many of these events, private buyers are showing up, offering cash for the more valuable guns. These private additions to the public turn-in are effective, no doubt, in getting more guns off the street, because they add to the resources that are available to those who want to get rid of guns for something of value, be it a grocery card or a number of twenty dollar bills.

You can help make the turn-in in your area more effective by standing on the curb with your "Cash for Guns" sign, or at a folding table, willing to offer more than the gift card for firearms that are more valuable. It would be best if numerous private parties were available, as more good guns could then be transferred into responsible hands.

This action serves many useful purposes. It stretches the turn-in budget so that more guns can be taken off the street. It helps keep fearful widows from being defrauded of most of the market value of the gun they are turning in. It prevents valuable assets from being destroyed by bureaucratic inflexibility. It is a win-win-win situation.   The ideal situation for those organizing the turn in would be to allow private buyers to purchase the valuable guns, while having the organizers take the cheap guns "off the streets".   As these events are ideologically driven, that seems unlikely, but it might be worth an attempt at outreach.  All parties would benefit.

Private buyers dispel the pernicious message that guns are bad and should be destroyed.

Link to potential legal risk of buying a gun at one of these events

Link to article with numerous examples of private sales at gun turn in events
Link to an article about private buyers at Detroit event

Link to Phoenix Article: pictures of private buyers

©2014 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included.
Link to Gun Watch

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