Hey, remember when gun control was in the news? We do too ... just barely. Now politicians are stalled, shootings continue unabated, and regular folks who don't own guns really don't seem to have much say in the matter. But launching today, a new crowdfunding platform is looking to put agency in the hands of people who are neither politicians nor gun owners.
Gunbygun.org is a funding source for gun buybacks started by Ian Johnstone and Eric King, two regular San Francisco dudes who wanted to find a way to tackle this problem that didn't count on congressional action. Johnstone has been involved in this issue for a long time. "I lost my dad to gun violence a long time ago," said Johnstone. "What's happened in the last 20 years since then is there's been very little progress made on the issue. In fact, things seem to be moving backwards."
The two reached out to the SFPD and found others who were involved in gun buybacks, like Supervisor Campos, who's been very involved. They decided to turn their idea into a funding source for a citywide series of buyback programs. Usually, gun buyback programs happen sporadically whenever a politician or local business owner can come up with the money. But there's never enough money to meet demand, which means that people who want to turn in their weapons can get sent home, gun still in hand.
Gunbygun hopes to raise enough money to make regular, funded buybacks a reality. Their exchange rate is $100 per gun and $200 per assault weapon (the weapons go straight to the police, who makes sure the guns are safely destroyed).
Tonight marks the official launch party and the first concerted push for funds. Head over to John Colins from 6-8 pm for happy hour specials, a silent auction, and appearances by city supervisors, community groups, and King and Johnstone, who are hopeful that they can eventually expand the project nationwide. "It's bringing together a large crew of people who are saying they're not okay with the state of gun violence."
You'll be able to donate at the door or on their website.
6:00 pm to 8:00 pm
John Colins, 138 Minna St.