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NCJ Number: 160167 Find in a Library
Title: Controlling Assault Weapons Would Reduce Crime (From Gun Control, P 38-41, 1992, Charles P Cozic, ed. -- See NCJ-160164)
Author(s): G Curtis
Date Published: 1992
Page Count: 4
Sponsoring Agency: Greenhaven Press
Farmington Hills, MI 48333-9187
Sale Source: Greenhaven Press
P.O. Box 9187
Farmington Hills, MI 48333-9187
United States of America
Type: Legislation/Policy Analysis
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Because they are more dangerous than other weapons, automatic and semiautomatic guns, often referred to as "assault weapons," should be banned; such a ban would reduce violent crime.
Abstract: Assault weapons that fire automatically and semiautomatically and can accommodate clips of 30 rounds or more are designed to deliver a relatively high number of bullets in seconds, thus reducing the need for accuracy in firing and increasing the likelihood that a number of targets can be hit before they have a chance to defend themselves or find cover. Somewhere between water guns and atomic weapons, there is a point at which certain types of weapons should not be allowed in private hands. The language of the Second Amendment about owning firearms is as absolute as the language in the First Amendment about free speech, yet there are laws against publishing fraudulent statements to get money or knowingly publishing falsehoods; some speech is not free. It is good public policy and consistent with the U.S. Constitution to restrict the kinds of weapons that can be possessed by private citizens. The traffic in assault weapons is a relatively new phenomenon; there are not yet that many assault rifles in private hands; neither are there that many extended magazines that hold 20, 30, or more rounds. It is still possible to restrict such weapons before they proliferate so widely that the public will want to buy them just to counter the threat of their possession by others. Even licensing them to the degree that we license automobiles would help.
Main Term(s): Criminology
Index Term(s): Assault weapons; Firearm-crime relationships; Firearms acts; Gun Control; Violence prevention
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