Where are Mike Doyle, Mike Hynson, Skip Frye, Joe Roper,Chris O'Rourke, Chris Godfrey, Larry Gordon, Tom Bessell now?
Chris Ahrens 8 a.m., June 25
"Let's face it," says Crossroads of the West Gun Show director Max Luger, "in this day and age, you have to think twice before buying a gun. For one thing, guns have gotten some bad PR lately. But more importantly, guns aren't cheap. A lot of families are having to ask that most difficult of questions, 'Guns or butter?' It's a choice, frankly, that no American should have to make, but there it is. Over the past few years, we've started to hear stories of people 'making do' with their old guns, struggling to preserve their worn-out relics through home repair or reduced usage."
That scenario, says Luger, is problematic on at least two counts. "First, it's bad for the gun industry, and anything that's bad for the gun industry is bad for the economy as a whole. I can show you study after study that link America's economic health with robust spending on defense - whether it's defense of the home or defense of the nation or defense of amorphous American interests overseas - and economic health. On the flip side, defense cuts are always, always linked to periods of economic recession. And there's no denying the importance of companies like Smith & Wesson to United States manufacturing. Sure, there are imports that get the job done cheaper, but the same could be said of General Motors, and even Obama knew better than to let them go under. Put simply, guns are too big to fail."
Second, he continued, "it's simply not safe. A worn-out gun is an accident waiting to happen. And for better or for worse, most guns today are simply too sophisticated for the passionate amateur to work on in the confines of his garage. We recommend replacing your gun every five years - and that's if you're a moderate shooter. And safety is absolutely a priority - it's why guns exist in the first place."
The solution, says Luger, is the buyback program. "At Crossroads of the West, we're able to take these guns off the street, bring them back up to like-new condition, and sell them back to the public at extremely reasonable prices."