This Is Supposed To Make Chicago Safer?

AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews

The city of Chicago has one of the most violent reputations in the nation. While much of that notoriety stems from a perception of being the most violent city in the nation, they’re not. Not really.

However, they’re right up there.

The city is seeing the kind of violence that would have made Al Capone shake his head in disgust, but not to worry. A recent buyback event in the South Side has made everything better. They got a whole 43 firearms!

A gun turn-in event brought in more than three dozen weapons, both real and replicas, in Chicago Saturday.

It was “no questions asked” at the New Beginnings Church at 67th and King Drive.

A $100 prepaid gift card was given for each gun turned in. For each replica there was a $10 gift card.

Well, not the people of Chicago can rest easy.

This is a city of over 2.7 million people. I can’t really see 43 guns putting even a minor dent in violent crime in the city.

To put it into perspective, the Chicago Police Department recovered 11,273 guns last year. I’m sorry, but 43 guns aren’t going to do a whole lot if you’re looking at that big of a problem.

And that’s if every weapon turned in was real. However, as noted above, some were “replicas,” meaning that they looked scary but no one could be hurt by them.

What may well have happened, though, is that some bad guys looking to dump a gun used in a crime in such a way that it wouldn’t be linked back to them. Well, here we have a golden opportunity to do just that and get a prepaid gift card for your trouble.

Brilliant.

The truth of the matter is that these so-called buybacks–so-called because the government can’t buy something back it never owned in the first place–are nothing more than kabuki theater. It’s virtue signaling at its finest.

See, these things accomplish nothing. Studies have shown that “buybacks” don’t actually reduce violence in a city. They don’t work, and why would they? Criminals aren’t about to turn over a perfectly good gun for what amounts to chump change for no good reason. That would be a bit like expecting a carpenter to sell his hammer or saw for $5 and some pocket lint.

It’s just not going to happen.

Yet taxpayer money gets blown on stuff like this all time, all so some church or civic group can feel like they’re doing something without them having to actually do anything. Actually doing something that will work requires more than showing up at a certain place on a certain day and committing what boils down to a retail transaction.

No, it requires long hours of difficult work; work that’s often absolutely thankless because no one realizes it’s actually been done. Buybacks are easy and allow folks to pat themselves on the back as they go about their day.

What it won’t do is make Chicago one lick safer than it was before all of this.