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posted: 7/17/2013 5:00 AM

Understand facts about assault weapons

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This is in regards to your editorial on July 14 calling for municipalities to ban assault weapons.

Assault weapon is a term that was advanced by and for the anti-gun movement and the news media in the late 1970s and popularized in the early 1980s. An assault rifle (not a weapon -- ever) is a military carbine that is both fully automatic and semiautomatic.

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The semi-auto rifles are the only type available to civilians. This semi-auto technology has been around for over 100 years and is available on hundreds of different models of rifles.

Last year in the United States the total murder rate for all rifles, not just semi-auto rifles is less than 360. More people have been murdered with hammers alone.

The most popular semi-auto you are proposing to ban is the AR-15. AR stands for the brand Amralite not assault rifle. This is the most popular rifle sold in America today. There are millions in use for hunting, target shooting and self defense.

There are over 95 manufactures of this modern sporting rifle and they have been around since the 1960s.

According to the Heller Decision on the Second Amendment, any common-use weapon cannot be prohibited. This is one reason that municipalities are reluctant to enact a ban, as there a good chance that there will be expensive lawsuits as a result.

Thomas Niewerth

Mundelein

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