Sunday, November 01, 2020

Grand Rapids Michigan Gun Turn-in Nets 107 Firearms, runs out of Gift Cards

Image from Grand Rapids Police, cropped and scaled by Dean Weingarten

On 24 October, 2020, the Grand Rapids Michigan Police Department held a gun turn-in event. Those who turned in guns were paid $50 black powder guns, $100 for shotguns, rifles and revolvers, and $200 for "Assault" rifles and semi-automatic pistols. From Grand Rapids Police facebook:

The Gun Buy Back for today was a resounding success. Although it was scheduled until 4:00p, community members came down in force to turn in their unwanted firearms, so the event ended early. 107 firearms were turned in.

The next Gun Buy Back Event is scheduled for Saturday November 7, from 10:00a until 2:00p at 851 Leonard St NW. Thank you to all those that came out to support this event today.


Image from City of Grand Rapids, for the event, cropped and scaled by Dean Weingarten


 The laws of the marketplace worked wonderfully.

The picture shows about 30 long guns (about 3,000 dollars worth of cards), 30 mostly antique revolvers, (about 3,000 dollars worth of cards) and about 35 semi-auto handguns, or 7,000 dollars in cards.  That would be about 13,000 dollars worth of gift cards. The semi-auto handguns included a large number that cost less than $200 new. The police ran out of gift cards early, as predicted. There were $15,000 of gift cards allocated for the two events, total.

Most of the long guns were ordinary .22 rifles and various shotguns. If there is a centerfire rifle in the bin, it is not conspicuous. Readers are welcome to point out favorite models they would have been willing to give more than Grand Rapids government was paying.

On November 7th, they will probably have few gift cards to hand out, and will run out  even earlier. Perhaps they will be desperately seeking more money for more gift cards in the intervening week.  

The coming election may be dampening enthusiasm for turning in guns. The higher than market price for inexpensive semi-automatic pistols may be offset by the extremely high demand for handguns at present. 

People who turn in guns at these events tend to fall into three distinct groups. 

The most common are people who inherited guns, are not interested in them, do not care to take the time to sell them, and see the gun turn in as an easy way to rid themselves of a perceived problem. Those who plot for a disarmed society do everything they can to further the perception of gun ownership as a problem instead of an asset.

A second group are those who see an opportunity to unload inexpensive firearms for more money than market value. This is especially true of firearms that have problems which are not obvious: missing magazines, unreliable function, sloppy timing on revolvers, hard to find ammunition, among others. 

A third group are the committed ideologues who hate guns and wish to make a statement. They tend to be a small minority at these events. 

It is unknown if any private buyers assisted the police department by privately purchasing good guns to get them off the street and into responsible owners hands. 

There were people coming to the event after the gift cards ran out. They would not be in a mood to take the gun they wanted to get rid of back with them, and would likely be willing to sell it at a discount.

The event was called a gun "buyback". "Buyback" is an Orwellian propaganda term, because the government cannot buy back what it never owned.

The Michigan legislature took a step toward banning local governments from spending tax money on gun "buybacks" in 2020. From

House Bill 5479, sponsored by Rep. Annette Glenn, R-Midland, would ban local governments and law enforcement from conducting gun buyback or takeback programs that offer residents compensation for their unwanted firearms. Local law enforcement would still be able to accept and dispose of firearms dropped off voluntarily.

The Michigan Senate has not voted on HB5479, which passed the House on 4 March, 2020. 

©2020 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

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John Hardin said...

Readers are welcome to point out favorite models they would have been willing to give more than Grand Rapids government was paying.

I would gladly pay $150 ($50 more than the police offered) for a Marlin model 60 with the longer barrel and 18-rd tube if one was in there. Those are hard to come by these days.

Dean Weingarten said...

I picked up one of those (might have been a slight model variation that cost a little more) at a turn-in.

It was basically new in the box (literally). I do not think it had ever been shot. It came in the original box.


Lovely little rifle. Probably a collector item.