We here at Bearing Arms tend to be critical of buybacks. They do nothing to combat crime. They just allow everyone to pat themselves on the back and make themselves feel good about accomplishing nothing.
However, a pastor in Valdosta, GA has taken it to a whole new level.
Bibles will replace guns 9 a.m.-3 p.m., Jan. 20, at the Southside Recreation Center during the Third Annual Guns for Bibles Exchange.
The exchange will be hosted by Pastor William Morgan of Morning Star Baptist Church in partnership with the Valdosta Police Department.
Guns of all types may be handed over to Morgan and Morning Star volunteers, and in return, people will receive Bibles.
“One of the main points that we want the public to realize is that we’re not infringing on their Second Amendment rights,” Morgan said. “They do have a right to bear arms; they have the right to protect life and property.”
He said the guns that will be released to him are ones that are illegal, have no serial numbers or may not be registered with the state of Georgia.
Of course, no firearms are registered with the state of Georgia, but that’s neither here nor there.
To be sure, there are some upsides to this. Because Bibles are being swapped for guns, this doesn’t make a good method for fencing stolen firearms, so there’s that.
However, the good pastor is deluded if he actually expects the criminal element in Valdosta to actually take advantage of this program. They won’t. Not only do they not want to get rid of their guns as a general rule, they definitely aren’t interested in Bibles.
Don’t get me wrong, we’re talking about people who probably do need Jesus in their life. I get that. But this isn’t going to get them there.
Instead, it’s a disposal program for guns.
Luckily, it was explicitly stated that stolen firearms will be returned to their owner, so that’s a good thing at least, but don’t expect that to happen much. It’s unlikely thieves are looking at a stash of stolen firearms and thinking, “You know what I need in exchange for these? Bibles.”
But since it’s another “no questions asked” situation, expect it to still be a dumping ground for firearms used in crimes. That means good luck trying to pin these crimes on any actual people. Yes, it can be done, but it won’t be easy.
Further, the impact of these events is minuscule. Even in larger communities than Valdosta, they only pick up a couple hundred guns in communities of close to a million people, and that’s while offering cash. Valdosta isn’t that big and they’re offering Bibles.
Sorry, I won’t hold my breath for this to make a real difference.
I get where Morgan’s head is at, and his heart is in the right place. It sounds like he’s a well-meaning man of God who wants to make the world a better place. I get that. I respect that. However, it’s also showing a degree of naivety in believing that the only reasons people resort to violence are a lack of Bibles and too many guns.
That’s not how it works, I’m afraid.