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posted: 7/18/2013 5:00 AM

Assault rifles wrong target against crime

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Regarding your editorial on banning assault weapons, can you even define an "assault weapon"? Originally the term referred to fully automatic military rifles such as the AK-47 or the Browning Automatic Rifle (BAR), none of which are involved here. Nor are these weapons the primary threat to us today.

Chicago has more deaths by handgun in a week than the state of Illinois has from assault weapons in a year. Nor are assault weapons easily concealed. And how are you able to define what is meant for hunting, target practice, skeet shooting or protecting homes or property? Have you ever, just for the fun of it, emptied a high capacity magazine at a paper target of your least favorite cartoon character?

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So far, the only thing that attempting to ban so called assault weapons has accomplished is to send the sales of such weapons soaring. Gun makers report backlogs of over a year. Millions of these weapons ae already in circulation. What percentage are used in crimes? Have you bothered to check?

The mass recent killings have been by mentally disturbed persons, either undiagnosed or known, and who stole the weapons they used. Your efforts would be much better directed at getting the mentally disturbed into effective and mandatory treatment than at attempting to ban specific types of weapons.

Mark W. Bailey

Round Lake Beach

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