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US gun makers have taken in more than US$1 billion ($1.43 billion) from selling AR-15-style guns over the past decade, at times marketing them as a way for young men to prove their masculinity, even as the number of mass shootings increases, according to a House investigation unveiled Wednesday.

The weapons have been used in massacres that have horrified the nation, including one that left 10 people dead at a grocery store in Buffalo and another where 19 children and two teachers were shot to death in Uvalde, Texas.

The Committee on Oversight and Reform said some ads mimic popular first-person shooter video games or tout the weapons’ military pedigree while others claim the guns will put buyers “at the top of the testosterone food chain.”

Those sales tactics are “deeply disturbing, exploitative and reckless,” said Democratic Representative Carolyn Maloney of New York. “In short, the gun…

Read more at www.9news.com.au

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