To the Editors:

To stem gun violence, we ought to focus on the root cause by preventing those unfit from accessing firearms. In this regard, Richard Creeth has gotten it right by supporting comprehensive background checks for all gun purchases to screen for mental health and domestic violence history, together with the other gun possession disabilities set forth in the Gun Control Act of 1968, as amended.

But Mr. Creeth has gotten it wrong with respect to supporting an outright ban on military-style semi-automatic rifles, otherwise known as modern sporting rifles, and high-capacity magazines. These rifles with cosmetic features function no differently than other legal firearms. As for such magazines, they have been standard issue for many years and commonly used by recreational and competitive shooters as well as for self-defense at home.

A decision of which magazine to use should be theirs alone to make. Nor would a ban or even a total confiscation of either reduce the overall crime rate. What would reduce the crime rate is enforcing the laws already on the books that have been designed to take firearms out of the hands of those who should not have them.

Carlton Chen

Wilton, Sept. 13