Madison Mayor Paul Soglin, a possible Democratic candidate for governor, recognizes that his city has a crime problem. Since locking up the bad guys is no longer fashionable, and since more police would only be seen as an “occupying force” in the People’s Republic of Madison, Soglin is putting out the reward posters.

Soglin told a press conference Tuesday that he is raiding his office funds to put out rewards for the locations of illegal guns. According to the Wisconsin State Journal:

Under the program Soglin announced, which he said is effective immediately, rewards of up to $1,000 will be given to those who report others who possess guns used in shootings or those being stored by people not legally allowed to possess them.

“The city of Madison cannot control who carries a firearm, who buys a firearm, who sells a firearm,” he said, adding that the city is “not pleased” that the state Legislature has loosened rules for gun ownership in Wisconsin.”But we can try and retrieve these firearms and have them ultimately lead us to the perpetrators.”

Soglin said studies of other cities’ gun bounty programs will be finished within weeks, but while those reviews are being completed, “I’m prepared to use funds in my office and to make $1,000 available for anyone who assists in the reporting of an illegal gun that has been identified as being used” to fire gunshots at homes, vehicles or people.

He said he didn’t know when the funds from his office for the program might run out.

At least Soglin recognizes that traditional gun buy-back programs don’t work. But Soglin misses the point about the ongoing crime problem in his city. There aren’t illegally harbored guns just running around Madison shooting people on their own. It wasn’t just some gun that grew legs and walked away from a legal gun owner in the city that caused a man’s death at a Culver’s restaurant in the dark of night. The next shooting in Madison won’t be some gun going off magically by itself.

Despite what Madison’s lefties might believe, there are real bad people in the world. Some of them even reside in Madison where they prey on others. Soglin’s efforts would be better spent getting the bad people off the streets who use the guns. That means longer sentences, actually punishing straw buyers, and *gasp* more police officers. Instead of criticizing the police chief for asking for a larger budget, Soglin should be standing up for the police chief and his request for more officers.

With any luck, Soglin’s rewards plan for guns (does it come with airplane miles, too?) might actually cause some bad guys to be found. Too bad it’s a potential side effect and not the actual purpose. We’ll just cross our fingers and hope innocent, legal gun owners aren’t the victims of this tip line scheme.

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