Machine guns have been strictly limited in America since 1934, but a federal ban on assault weapons expired in 2004. Assault weapons are high velocity semiautomatic rifles originally designed for the military for efficient killing of many people, but now adapted for sale to civilians. Typically, they possess features like detachable ammunition magazines, pistol grips, detachable or folding stocks, and barrel shrouds, among others, which are useful in combat. The Newtown killer used such a weapon to murder 26 kids and teachers at Sandy Hook Elementary School.
As a combat veteran and strong supporter of the military respectively, Mark and Gabby know the power and deadliness of assault weapons and believe their sale should be limited. Many horrific mass shootings have featured murderers with assault weapons, and such shootings perpetrated with assault weapons tend to produce twice as many victims as mass shootings with non-assault weapons. And since the assault weapons ban expired in 2004, 37 percent of police agencies reported seeing noticeable increases in criminals’ use of assault weapons, according to a 2010 survey of police chiefs.
Congress should act to limit the sale of assault weapons.