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The right to bear arms

January 4, 1993



The editorial describes the firearm used in a recent shooting as "a Chinese-made semi-automatic weapon" and later as "an assault weapon." The description is in error, as assault firearms have a selector switch that permits single shots or fully automatic operation. United States law permits private ownership of such a gun after investigation of the applicant, and payment of a $200 tax. Massachusetts does not allow citizens this privilege. More than 25 other states do.

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The term "assault weapon" is a buzzword to connect military weaponry with civilian firearms to frighten those who choose not to own firearms. Warren R. Kremske, Chicago

Letters are welcome. Only a selection can be published, subject to condensation, and none acknowledged. Please address them to "Readers Write," One Norway St., Boston, MA 02115.