By Frank James

What to do with the all the guns confiscated during police stops?

In Southern California, many guns are melted down into molten steel, then transformed from weapons of destruction into construction rebar and other building materials.

Steven Cuevas of NPR station KPCC, Southern California Public Radio has a report on a long-time program in Los Angeles called "Project Isaiah."

A snippet from his the script of his radio report:

STEVEN: The Tamco Steel Company in the city of Rancho Cucamonga started hosting these annual weapon meltdowns 16 years ago. The effort is called "Project Isaiah, inspired by a biblical passage from the Old Testament.
JIM CROMPTON: "They shall beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks."
STEVEN: Tamco Steel vice president Jim Crompton.
CROMPTON: "Our modern version? They shall melt their guns and weapons into re-enforcing bar and build community for all to live in peace and harmony."
CUEVAS: About 16-thousand weapons were forged into re-enforced steel rebar for uses on freeways, bridges and buildings.
RANCHO CUCAMONGA MAYOR DONALD KURTH: "Where on earth does someone get bazookas?"

A piece of audio can be found here.

categories: All Things Considered

4:40 - August 5, 2009