To the Editor:

It appears that Mr. Cohan (Letters, Jan. 25) has bought into the same myth as many politicians and pundits, namely that an AR-15 is a military rifle and should be banned.  The truth is that an AR-15 shoots one bullet for each pull on the trigger, like any other semi-automatic rifle. It does not shoot more bullets at once. It is not more lethal than any other rifle. Like any weapon, be it a knife or a pistol, it can be used for defense or assault. The only difference between an AR-15 and other rifles is cosmetic. The exterior design mimics that of some military weapons but it functions like any other rifle.

Please also note that in order to purchase a firearm, background checks are already required at the local, state, and federal levels. Those with mental illness or criminal records are already barred from purchasing guns. The issue to be addressed is the poor communication of the feds to post the names of those who fail background checks.  Another issue is that criminals can get guns through the black market or theft, bypassing background checks altogether.

Lastly, outlawing firearms on colleges or places of business, makes people there sitting ducks for evil-doers. The reason the Aurora, Colorado shooter chose the theater he did was because it had a “gun-free” sign out front. He passed by several other theaters that had no such sign. Why would anyone want to make college students defense-less?  Unless there are checkpoints at every college campus entry, businesses, and entertainment venues, with pat downs and armed guards, there is no “common sense” in having gun-free zones. As of 2017, the worst case kill rate, whether justified or not, was 0.003% for concealed carry holders.

For more gun myths exposed, please see http://www.gunfacts.info/gun-control-myths/concealed-carry/

Linda Lavelle

Aspen Mill Road, Jan. 28