NRA Files Appeal On Handgun Sales Age Ruling
On Sept. 29, a federal judge in the Northern District of Texas decided in favor of the federal government in a case brought by the NRA challenging the federal restriction on the purchase of handguns by 18-20 year old adults. The NRA has already filed an appeal. In Jennings v. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the NRA and a group of responsible young adults argued that since 18-20 year olds are considered adults for virtually every other purpose, such as voting and military service, adults in this age group should also be able to purchase handguns from licensed dealers. In the ruling, Judge Samuel Cummings wrote “the Court is of the opinion that the ban does not run afoul of the Second Amendment to the Constitution,” and wrongly equated law-abiding 20-year-olds with criminals, stating that “the right to bear arms is enjoyed only by those not disqualified from the exercise of the Second Amendment rights.” “As we said when we filed this case, adults 18 and up have fought and died for American freedom throughout our country’s history,” said Chris W. Cox, Executive Director of the NRA Institute for Legislative Action. “They are adults for virtually every legal purpose under federal and state law, and that should include the ability to buy handguns from licensed dealers to defend themselves, their homes and their families. Our fellow plaintiffs in this case are law-abiding and responsible young adults. We plan to defend their rights to the very end.” A similar case, in which many of the same plaintiffs challenge the state of Texas’ ban on issuance of Right-to-Carry permits to adults under 21, remains pending in the same court. That case is Jennings v. McCraw.