Utica Gun Buyback Doesn’t Add Up


October 19,2013    www.NY2Agrassroots.com

It was a victory for Civil Rights and simple economics on Saturday.

State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman recently launched an effort to host “gun buybacks” across the state.His office is offering gift cards for the following:

  • $25.00 for antique and non-working firearms
  • $50.00 for rifles and shotguns
  • $75.00 for handguns
  • $100.00 for assault weapons

The problem with that is that in most cases, rifles and shotguns are worth much more than $50. So-called assault weapons are often worth 10 times as much as Schneiderman wants to shell out in his pittance of a buyback. His effort manifested itself at the Utica Memorial Auditorium on Saturday. NY2A and its affiliates, New York Revolution and Oathkeepers, were there to protest the buyback, offer alternatives and raise awareness of the Civil Rights implications of the NY SAFE Act.

Although NY2A and its partners agree with Scheiderman that keeping guns out of the hands of criminals is important,

gun buybacks across the country have proven to be ineffective in combating violence. Most of those who turned in guns at the Utica buyback and one earlier this month in Rochester, were senior citizens on fixed incomes. The true value of the guns they turned in was not recognized by Schneiderman, and the seniors were essentially victimized by a politician pursing a political agenda. Schneiderman will declare this buyback to be a success when in fact it was ineffective as a crime prevention measure and a ripoff to those who participated.

The reality is, gun buybacks pay low dollar amounts to law-abiding citizens who don’t realize their guns are often worth much more when sold to a gun shop or private citizen. This was borne out today at the protest. Many people decided to sell to a licensed dealer working with NY2A and its partners instead of using the buyback. It was clear from today’s turnout, the vast majority of the people going to the buyback were financially strapped senior citizens, not gangbangers who are the perpetrators of most crime involving guns.

The joint effort led to at least nine people – mostly senior citizens on limited incomes – getting a fairer value for their property than what was offered by Schneiderman.

“We attend these buybacks to educate those individuals with legal guns. They are the vast majority of attendees and are unaware their guns can be sold to a gun shop or licensed dealer for a much higher value than they’d receive turning them into the police,” said Gia Arnold, an organizer with New York Revolution, who has helped lead two buyback protests so far.

And in addition to those seniors getting more money in their pockets, the guns that were purchased from them will remain in circulation. They will likely end up in the hands of the youngest generation of patriots, carrying on one of the greatest traditions of this country – firearms ownership by free citizens.

Schneiderman is hosting several more gun buybacks across the state. Locations include Binghamton, Poughkeepsie, Yonkers and the Buffalo suburb of Cheektowaga.

The dates and times of these buybacks have not yet been announced. But one thing is for certain. NY2A Grassroots Coalition and its partners will be there to protest the SAFE Act and make sure New Yorkers get the money they deserve for the firearms they no longer want. We will ensure those firearms are sold to federally licensed gun store owners, who will then resell them to law-abiding citizens, thereby continuing the great tradition of firearms ownership in this country.

Make sure that you are signed up to NY2A in order to get our alerts about these upcoming buybacks. We want to see YOU there! Sign up at