Can buying back guns eliminate city violence?
In a world as populated and violent as ours, it is hard to organize and try to make a change.
Although many people in big cities own weapons in their homes for protection, how many of those weapons are really legally owned?
We could never get a real number of exactly how many are illegal, but with Harrisburg’s new “gun buyback program,” it is becoming simpler to locate that number.
Due to Harrisburg’s violence worsening Mayor, Linda Thompson established a program to get illegal, working guns off of Harrisburg’s streets.
Though this program sounds tactful, I do believe there are flaws in the plan that we are not coming to terms with.
This “gun buyback program” is offering money to people who turn in guns, turn others in for having illegal guns and if the gun recovery deals with an arrest of the person.
Past attempts at this process were not successful according to Chief of Police Pierre Ritter.
But now Harrisburg is beginning to actually bribe people with money; what more could the people of Harrisburg want?
The amount of money given out will be, $50 for a phone call tip that leads to the weapon, $100 for the gun and an arrest and $200 for multiple guns and arrests.
To some people, that amount of money is enough to turn someone in that they know. But is this process really working for this specific cause? Not only can people steal guns just to turn it in and receive money, but they could even plant a gun in someone’s house to receive money.
I think the thought of the mayor on this program is a good one. With fewer weapons there will be less crime, deaths and violence.
But they need to think this through.
Not only will people turn in old guns that are lying around to receive payment, but also people will be in danger for turning in others.
In this world, relying on others is hard.
If you do not change something in your own way and own time, many things will not get done.
Relying on the people of Harrisburg to “rat out” their neighbors, friends and family for money, may not go in the right direction we want it to.
How do we figure that by bribing people with money to turn in illegal guns, that it is actually going to help the violence in the city of Harrisburg?
And should a city that is bankrupt be handing out money to people like it is nothing? I am sure that money could be spent on something much more suitable and more practical for the city.
An anonymous donor has contributed $10,000 to start off the program, but that money will quickly run out, and then Harrisburg is faced with spending money it obviously does not have it.
The program’s cash rewards will also only continue if City Council does not cut the police chief’s 2012 budget.
So what happens if cash is not being offered anymore? Does the mayor really believe people are going to turn their guns, friends, family members and strangers in for free?
I just cannot force myself to believe that confiscating weapons that are illegal is going to halt violence.
Many people, who have licensed guns, can just as easily commit murder or cause destruction in a city as a person with an illegal weapon.
In a city as large and diverse as Harrisburg, bad things are going to happen. Violent crime is a part of our world, and as horrible as that is, we need to justify it. Telling people to essentially “tattle” on others for money is not a way crime is going stop.
The next day, that same person can go out and get another gun illegally and commit a crime, when we all least expect it.
Things do not change in this world that fast.