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Why L.A.'s Gun Buyback Day is Day Before Mother's Day

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Illustration by igoriale via Shutterstock
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Angelenos, if you are at a total loss as to what to get your momma for Mother's Day (hint: it's this Sunday) and you happen to own a gun you don't want to keep around, you could trade it in Saturday for a $100 or $200 gift card at the annual gun buyback event.

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Photo via Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa on Facebook
But the convenient weapon-for-gift card swap opportunity to regift something valuable isn't the reason why the fourth annual event is the day before Mother's Day, according to Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, who wrote on his Facebook page: "[W]e chose this day for the Gun Buyback Program because too many mothers lose their children due to gun violence. This is our opportunity to make a real difference for our children, our families, and our future."The annual gun exchange allows people to take their handguns, rifles, shotguns and assault weapons, no questions asked, to any of six designated trade locations in the city, and in return, they will get a gift card. Assault weapons are worth a $200 Ralphs or VISA card. Other guns are worth $100, elaborates City News Service.

The program has been pretty popular in its previous three years; last year 2,062 weapons surrendered in exchange for Ralphs and Visa gift cards, while the year before there were over 2,500 guns traded in. The first year, they actually ran out of gift cards! Since 2009, the city's buyback program has netted approximately 6,269 weapons.

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The weapons are first checked to see if they are stolen. If they are not, they are destroyed.

Here are the six locations:

--LAFD's Frank Hotchkins Training Academy, 1700 Stadium Way;
--Park & Ride Parking Lot 1300 West Pacific Coast Highway;
--Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church, 7900 South Western Avenue;
--Grant African Methodist Episcopal Church, 10435 South Central Avenue;
--Korean Evangelical Zion Church, 2149 West Washington Blvd; and
--Facey Medical Center Parking Lot, 11165 Sepulveda Boulevard.

And have a gunfire-free Mother's Day, everyone!