According to a report by Joleen Ferris of News Channel 2, a man claimed he received $21,000 in gift cards at a gun buyback sponsored by New York State Attorney General Letitia James in Utica, New York with 3D printed guns.

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According to the report, the man saw people claiming on social media that they used 3D printers to make guns to sell at gun buybacks. The man, referring to himself only as "Kem," used a 3D printer he received as a Christmas gift to employ the same strategy. He claimed that he showed up to the gun buyback in Utica with 110 firearms to sell.

After hours of haggling, he finally received 42 gift cards worth $500 each from the budget office. Kem told Ferris "I'm sure handing over $21,000 in gift cards to some punk kid after getting a bunch of plastic junk was a rousing success. Gun buybacks are a fantastic way of showing, number one, that your policies don't work, and, number 2, you're creating perverse demand. You're causing people to show up to these events, and, they don't actually reduce crime whatsoever."

According to a report by Clark Merrefield of The Journalist's Resource, Kem isn't wrong about gun buybacks. Research on gun buybacks from the 1990s showed that they are largely ineffective at reducing the amount of gun violence in the United States. But part of that may be related to the sheer number of guns owned in the country. That report also referenced a 2018 study that found that the United States accounts for nearly 46% of all civilian-held firearms. With so many guns out there, the percentage of guns being reclaimed in gun buyback programs is actually pretty small.

Regardless, it doesn't paint New York in a good light to give away $21,000 in gift cards for plastic guns made with a 3D printer.

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