Thomas Oatway | An Assault Weapons Proposal

Letters to the Editor
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Assault weapons are killing too many innocent Americans. They are the weapon of choice for mass murderers who are killing children in schools. We need to do everything reasonable to protect ourselves and our loved ones from these horrible killing machines. The sad reality is there are already too many of them in the hands of Americans. It is unreasonable to think we can eliminate these types of guns with legislation. However, it may be possible to enact laws that can allow these guns to be retained by responsible gun owners, and ensure that those who are a danger to society are not able to retain their weapons.

First, we have to immediately shut down production, import and sale of these kinds of guns in the interest of public health. It must be illegal for a gun retailer to acquire and sell assault weapons. Sale of these types of guns by individuals must also be illegal. If you have one, you can keep it. But only if you are a responsible gun owner.

Second, all assault weapons need to be registered with federal authorities. Failure to do so must become a serious felony offense; e.g. a minimum of six months in jail and a $10,000 fine. Registration must be tied to a new and comprehensive background check to ensure that felons, those with criminal intent, and anyone with serious mental illness must not be permitted to register and retain an assault weapon.

This will be a costly enterprise, but not as costly as having to secure public places like schools, malls, supermarkets, concerts and other public venues. 

Thomas Oatway

Valencia

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