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(5,523 posts)
Wed Jun 1, 2022, 08:11 AM Jun 2022

Banning guns is the 'easy' part - enforcement and removal is the hard part

Lots of discussion on the need to ban dangerous guns and restrict magazines. Makes total sense, but the discussion seems focused on what might be possible to pass and how to do it.

What is being overlooked is what happens after that.

Let's say Heller is overturned, and we have the ability to pass an enhanced version of the 94 Assault Weapons Ban - one with no grandfathering.

How do we get the now illegal guns?

A few will cooperate. I own a pistol with two magazines that hold 15 rounds each (its what came with it), and I'd be fine exchanging them for ones that hold less. (I live in a very rural area where police response times can be 30+ minutes)

I'm certain that I'd be the exception and not the norm. It's a reasonable assumption that the majority won't turn them in because its the law, or even the right thing to do. Look at the abysmal registration compliance in NY and CT when they implemented a registration program - estimated at 20% or less registered.

Taking them away against their will also isn't likely to be successful.

The immediate first challenge will be one of nullification by states. Think of the current state / federal schism on marijuana but times 100. This will need to be addressed, possibly by threatening to withhold federal funding to states.

The next part is enforcement and removal once the states are brought into line.

This is definitely the hardest of the hard parts.

I see two near intractable problems: we don't fully know how many there are, we don't fully know who has them, and who collects those we do know about?

We can get clues from manufacturer and sales records, but since very few states have any sort of registration or restrictions on private sales, there is no way of proving who should have one to turn in. Add in home built guns and there are a bunch that we don't even have that. On top of this is the magazine issue, they are not serialized or recorded in any way. We have next to nothing to go on for tracking down magazines.

Those we can track down, who gets them and how?

Going door to door would be a losing proposition.

There aren't nearly enough federal resources to do it, plus backlash against this would be even hotter than state/local resources doing it. You could easily get state and local law enforcement standing with the gunners in opposition.

State and local resources isn't much better. In red areas they will likely be sympathetic to the gunners and simply refuse. If there is a means to force them into action, I would expect them to do anything they can do undermine it.

Whoever would be tasked with a door to door effort, I would not expect them to put themselves at risk and push the issue (which would certainly be needed). It is very clear that he hardcore gunners value their guns more than the lives of innocent children, I imagine they would care even less about the lives of law enforcement trying to take their guns.

What does this leave? Honestly, I can't think of too many options, and only one that might have a chance of working.

That is to treat gun owners like a little child. Reward them / bribe them for doing the right thing because they won't do it on their own. In other words a mandatory buyback program that pays so well that most of them will want to turn them in out of greed. This would probably mean double or more what those items sold for before the ban. Searching google, looks like AR-15 magazines are $10-$15 each. Handgun magazines are $25 to $40. It might take rewards of $2500 for an assault rifle and $50 for a high capacity magazine (numbers pulled out of thin air, but remember it will take a major windfall to make them want the money more than their precious guns).

It won't get all of them, the hardcore nutters won't turn them in at any price, but if we can get the majority it would be a huge improvement. Getting most of them also has the impact of de-normalizing ownership of this stuff. This approach isn't ideal, and the idea of rewarding gun nuts and giving them tons of cash for their nasty toys will feel wrong to many, but this is one of the only remotely viable roadmaps.

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(5,487 posts)
2. You are correct
Wed Jun 1, 2022, 08:30 AM
Jun 2022

And it is why I think the idea of a new and retroactive ban won't happen.

Even your idea of overpaying for them is problematic because in a ban, the black market value of them will skyrocket.

I think the more reasonable way is to just shift AR ownership into the same category as fully automatic machine guns. Still possible to own but with strict licensing requirements. Then give them a 5 year window to certify or surrender them.

It will still be a mess but has the benefit of actually giving people an option.

Unfortunately this is a pandora situation and I don't see the guns ever actually going back in the box.


(5,523 posts)
3. The issue there is again compliance
Wed Jun 1, 2022, 08:37 AM
Jun 2022

if NY and CT couldn't get the majority to comply with free registration, I don't think federal licensing and registration would be obeyed either. You have to make them want to do it, and from the state examples its clear that 'do this or risk jail' isn't enough incentive.


(5,487 posts)
7. No doubt
Wed Jun 1, 2022, 09:19 AM
Jun 2022

However, it backs into a whole lot of other controls that are desirable

-no new sales without the strict requirements. Which alone would have stopped Uvalde

-no open carry since they won't be legal

-no taking to a range since there could be serious problems for ranges and dealers

-could restrict ammo sales to only licensed individuals with stiff penalties for any ghost buying.

-automatic red-flag law since they could be confiscated when unregistered.

-no more stupid gun culture bullshit like instagram and xmas cards for those unwilling to comply. Clearly, that alone will discourage a lot of the small penis assholes since they won't get to act like tough guys.

-no more openly running around in the woods with your tough-guy militia buddies since the ATF could track that better.

-if caught, both the illegal guns and the owners would be out of circulation for awhile

-over time, the number of properly license guns would increase while the illegal ones would hopefully decrease. As they say, the best time to plant a tree is 30 years ago. The second best time is now.

Yes, a lot of ARs would stay illegal but that is true of any ban as well. But for me, if they are required to stay off the grid they seem a lot less dangerous to me. It won't stop everything but it certainly gives us a lot more control of the situation.

The argument for this version is easier to make (easier-not easy). 'We aren't adding any new gun laws. We are simply recognizing that ARs have more in common with machine guns than they do with all other weapons and are reclassifying them to fall under the rules accordingly.'


(12,008 posts)
4. Ban AND removal is long term, but doable. Three year process..Begin with outlaw and buy-back.
Wed Jun 1, 2022, 08:42 AM
Jun 2022

Year one. We will buy back your toy.... $100 or 200 per item turned in.

Year two, you can turn it in without penalty.

Year three, if a gun is found in your house, car, carried on you, escalating penalties for offenses.

No one confiscates or comes after your gun... just hope you ain't found with one.

And.... No one is allowed to sell a gun. Gun stores and gun shows are outlawed.

EXCEPTIONS: I can guess there are times and places where a gun is necessary... Wild animals attacking livestock. Provision needs to be there for that.


(3,668 posts)
9. Any buyback program
Wed Jun 1, 2022, 09:27 AM
Jun 2022

Would be mandatory and would have to be for full value. If not it is a government taking of private property without compensation which is illegal.


(12,008 posts)
10. The buyback would be optional. They could wait for the next year and get nothing for turning them in
Wed Jun 1, 2022, 10:39 PM
Jun 2022


(101,284 posts)
5. The problem is guns are not like other products--they tend to last forever when maintained.
Wed Jun 1, 2022, 08:54 AM
Jun 2022

That is why the gun manufacturers have been so damned obsessive about brainwashing gun owners to buy more and more and more when the ones they have will have no defined lifespan.

It would require a combination of carrot and stick. The stick might mean mandatory registration for primary owner and non-transferrable after death. Strict laws for felony punishment of those found with unregistered guns. Ban of new sales of semiautomatic rifles and large-capacity magazines. Required annual recertification training and biannual inspection of storage procedures. Much as the Swiss already do.


(972 posts)
6. No one wants to hear it but it will probably take decades to do
Wed Jun 1, 2022, 08:59 AM
Jun 2022

This country didn't get 400 million guns in private circulation overnight and they won't come out of circulation overnight either. It will likely take a generation to accomplish.


(39,171 posts)
8. I am not even sure the federal government can ban gun ownership
Wed Jun 1, 2022, 09:22 AM
Jun 2022

All previous federal bans centered on sale and manufacturing using the Commerce Clause. I am pretty certain only the states can actually ban ownership.


(8,828 posts)
11. Instead of removing them make it illegal to transport them or sell them.
Wed Jun 1, 2022, 11:27 PM
Jun 2022

Getting them off the street is the goal. We don’t have to collect them from every gun owner to get a lot of guns off the street. We have to stop any new sales and private sales, and offer a buy back program for those who wish to take advantage of it. After a deadline it would be a felony to transport (or sell) those weapons if caught. But, it would not be illegal for an owner to continue to store his guns on his own property if he so desires. Leave open the option (indefinitely) for the original owner to sell them back to the government if/when he gets tired of looking at them.


(32,419 posts)
12. I'm okay with the holdouts dying in a shootout with the feds
Wed Jun 1, 2022, 11:37 PM
Jun 2022

if it comes down to that. 2 birds, one stone. Of course, we all know that will never happen. Apparently it's only ok to reverse women's rights. Our homegrown militias / terrorists get away with whatever they want.


(11,680 posts)
14. Banning is easy?? lmfao...
Wed Jun 1, 2022, 11:56 PM
Jun 2022

There is NO WAY a ban, even if passed and signed into law... (one in a million chance)

Wouldn't be overturned by the Barf, Handmaiden, GoodHair, Scalito, Sleepy + Roberts Court.


(5,523 posts)
15. Easy relative to what comes after
Thu Jun 2, 2022, 04:48 AM
Jun 2022

We focus on the ban without enough thought towards the rest of it.

Passing a law won't make them go away on their own.

Those who have them won't just hand them in because the law say so.

Law enforcement won't be eager to risk their lives to enforce it.

None of it is remotely easy at all, just some tasks more herculean than others.


(99 posts)
16. I seriously doubt any ban will be inacted anytime soon
Thu Jun 2, 2022, 09:27 AM
Jun 2022

An observation I've had, along with some epiphanies in my thought processes.

Please stop attacking, berating, denigrating, or otherwise putting down your "opponents" because "they" will automatically get defensive and resort to emotional responses instead of listening, thinking and maybe even perhaps agreeing to logical solutions to OUR problem.

The suggestions put forth in the OP and responses can be a perceived "authoritarian-like" response to the problem which does trigger "them" to even more firmly "hold or stand their ground" against a tyrannical attempt to infringe on their and OUR Constitutional rights.

They fear "the other" and having their life or personal property "taken" from them, either by means of private violence or "state-sponsored" violence.

Whether we all choose to admit it or not, the "state" as in city, county, state and federal governments, including LEOs, have no legal duty to protect an individual life from "private violence". So if the "state" won't protect their or our lives who then do we turn to for protection? And how do we go about protecting and defending OUR lives? How will YOU help THEM to protect OUR lives?

A bit of ancient wisdom that I believe applies to this significant major issue in this country.

“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”

― Sun Tzu, The Art of War

While the wording figuratively applies to real actual war, I believe we should approach this major significant issue with logic and reason while reaching out with compassion and empathy.


(82,849 posts)
18. The first step is to stop making a bigger mess
Thu Jun 2, 2022, 12:09 PM
Jun 2022

We didn't get where we are overnight; we won't get to a better place overnight, either. But if we're going to clean up this shit storage tank of a situation, let's first stop pouring more shit into the tank.

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