Gun Turn-In Program Inflated in News Reports

Anti-gunners are often criticized for inflating or changing statistics, and/or flat-out lying about gun facts. Sometimes, they just exaggerate a little or omit facts entirely to support their beliefs.

This November 14 story from Time Warner Cable News network describing the turnout at a gun turn-in (they weren't offering money, so it can't be called a buyback) event in Greensboro, North Carolina, is an example of the latter tendencies.

The story states: "Almost 1,000 people took "A Pledge of Non-Violence" Saturday at Destiny Christian Center…This was to show their commitment to safety across the Gate City. Gun owners also turned in unwanted firearms and ammunition at the event. Signing the pledge and turning in weapons was spurred, in part, by an increase in gun violence across the city."

The folks at the NRA noticed in the accompanying video that there wasn't the obligatory sweeping shot of a pile of guns arranged on a table or the floor. Instead, there was a shot of a lone sheathed knife in an otherwise empty cardboard box and a closeup of what any gun owner can identify as a BB pistol.

It turns out they were right to be suspicious.

The NRA-ILA took a look and called out the news report. This story on November 20 states: "Voluntary gun buybacks are a classic case of gun control symbolism. Their advocates claim they are 'taking guns off our streets,' although in many cases the guns collected are so ancient or decrepit as to be completely nonfunctional or nearly so. In other cases, the guns are not coming off 'the street' but from law-abiding owners where such firearms pose no risk to public safety whatsoever."

And those are programs where cash is offered and no questions asked about any firearms people wish to turn in.

"Given all this, it was particularly ambitious for the Greensboro, NC, Police Department (GPD) to urge residents to turn in guns, while also signing a 'pledge of non-violence' at an event the department conducted last Saturday. According to the Facebook post advertising the event, 'Police employees will be accepting handguns, rifles, shotguns, and ammunition at the event. This is not a buy-back program. No cash will be given in exchange for weapons voluntarily surrendered to police.'"

"A report by Time-Warner Cable News tried to put a positive spin on things by noting that “almost 1,000 people” responded to take the pledge, leading one to believe that 1,000 firearms had been turned in, but this was hardly the case. As evidenced by the footage accompanying the story, the gun turn-in apparently resulted in a single BB pistol and a single sheathed hunting knife being 'taken off the streets.'"

The fact that the report doesn't state how many firearms were turned in revealed that it wasn't very successful as a gun-turn-in event, but was more of a rally for already like-minded people.