As we all know by now, a complete assault rifle ban is virtually impossible to attain. As an alternative, I am suggesting that assault rifles be classified as “weapons of war” like machine guns, bazookas and grenade launchers.

Like machine guns, it should require that the gun be registered with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and that the owner to be licensed.

I believe the license fee is still $200. Having to apply for a federal license can take a considerable amount of time, which would serve as a deterrent for immediate access.

So, what should be classified as an assault rifle? In my view, any rifle that is magazine fed and has a pistol grip can be classified as an assault rifle.

Trying to get current owners to register their weapons may prove difficult, but buybacks could first be attempted. For those who choose to keep their weapons, they would be restricted to certified gun ranges if properly registered and licensed. Any person violating these conditions would be subject to arrest.

Richard Houle, Lewiston


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