As hard as it is to believe, Arizona has a pro-gun bill, the likes of which hasn’t even surfaced in South Carolina’s gun-loving General Assembly.
Gov. Jan Brewer recently signed legislation prohibiting cities and counties from destroying guns. Firearms that come into their possession must be sold to federally licensed gun dealers.
That means that city- or county-sponsored gun buybacks — similar to ones here that entice people to give up their handguns — have become effectively pointless in Arizona.
Firearms advocates are delighted with the law, saying that selling the guns would feed public coffers.
But police, who see the value in getting those guns off the streets of their jurisdictions, aren’t so happy. Tucson recently held a buyback that drew more than 200 weapons in exchange for $10,000 worth of gift cards donated by the Safeway grocery store chain.
Phoenix police plan to hold three buybacks in the next three months before the new law takes effect. The guns will be destroyed.
Tucson Council member Regina Romera called the law “ridiculous,” noting that Arizona complains about federal control but doesn’t hesitate to micromanage cities.
It’s a conundrum South Carolina can understand. The Legislature hasn’t prohibited cities and counties from destroying guns, but it is considering prohibiting doctors from talking about gun safety with their patients.
It seems small-government principles — here and in Arizona — don’t hold up when guns are concerned.