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Guns for Groceries

Guns for Groceries

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50 Supporters


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This petition has been created by Tom T. and may not represent the views of the Avaaz community.
Tom T.
started this petition to
U.S. Congress, Steven Dettelbach, Director, ATF
This would be supported by both Republicans and Democrats, since it would not force or require anyone to do anything – it would be all voluntary. It is designed to take guns off the streets—not from those with expensive gun collections.
GUNS FOR GROCERIES 1. Congress would create a fund to buy back guns from the public. What will be different is the form of payment.
2. Working with big city police departments, who know what cheap guns sell for in inner cities, the amount of payment would have set amounts for a hand gun, rifle or shotgun, and semi-automatic rifles. This could be $50, $100, and $150, or possibly $100, $150, and $200. This is not to pay for even the wholesale value of a gun, but simply to take guns off the streets.
3. Here is where the buy back is unique. Instead of paying cash for the guns turned into the police departments, or other approved locations (perhaps in a large city, non-police organizations would volunteer to be a collection point, if they have a safe place to store the weapons), the person would be given a debit card THAT CAN ONLY BE USED AT A GROCERY STORE OR SUPERMARKET and would be limited to groceries, even if the store also sold guns. The debit cards would say on the card that guns or ammo could not be bought with those cards. The debit amounts would be accounted to the government, perhaps quite similar to money collected for Medicare cards. We don't want to recreate the wheel, just plug in to what already exists.
4. As a check and balance, the ATF would collect the guns once a month and verify that the debit cards given out and those that remain equal the guns taken in and then provide the gun collection locations with more debit cards if needed. The ATF could also supply safes to locations in inner cities that would like to take part, but need a safe place to store them. The ATF would then take the guns to be destroyed. The gun collection location would have written down, or entered on a form provided by the ATF, the serial number of each gun they had collected for the ATF to verify.
Let's look at three different scenarios as to how this would work.
1. The wife says, "George, we're short on money for food this month. Take one of your old guns and turn it in for one of those debit cards, so we don't starve, or have to stand in line for hours for a charity handout." He gives up a cheap gun. But a couple of months later she is after him again, and he has to give up another gun. A side benefit is that the charities don't have to acquire as much food over the long run as they do now.
2. A 14 year old kid of a single mother knows where there is a handgun, and is considering getting it to hold up a convenience store. Instead, he takes the gun to the turn-in location and gets a debit card for his mother to use.  3. The relatives of a gun owner with a number of guns wants to have nothing to do with them in an estate sale after the person's death. This gives them the option of turning them all in and getting the debit cards, either to use for themselves or to donate to an organization that serves those in need.
If enough people get behind this, it can be a step to reduce gun violence. It is VOLUNTARY.  No one is forced to do anything.

Posted (Updated )