On July 13, 2021 a Federal Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in a 2-1 vote that the current ban on gun sales to individuals under the age of 21 are unconstitutional. This ruling came from the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals in which Judge Julius Richardson declared that, “our nation’s most cherished Constitutional Rights vest no later than 18. And the Second Amendment’s right to keep and bear arms is no different.”
This ruling came after Hirschfled & Marshall v BATFE came in front of the 4th Circuit Court. Natalia Marshall had wanted to purchase a handgun for self-defense against an abusive ex-boyfriend as well as to defend herself in remote rural areas since she works with horses. When the gun shop turned her down due to her age (18) she decided to sue the federal government for infringing upon her rights. The law that prevented her from purchasing said handgun? None other than the Gun Control Act of 1968.
The majority claimed that in 1968 Congress used misleading data to justify the passing the Gun Control Act, it was stated, “Congress may not restrict the rights of an entire group of law-abiding adults because a minuscule portion of that group commits a disproportionate amount of gun violence.”
This law disenfranchises millions of Americans and puts them in a second class tier of adulthood; they are expected to act as adult, they are tried in courts as adults, but they aren’t allowed to purchase handguns like adults or defend their safety like an adult.
While this ruling challenges a 5th Circuit Court of Appeals ruling in 2012, this law shouldn’t exist as it creates a double standard, or as I said before, a second class tier of adulthood.
At 18 years of age (and younger for some of these) you’re deemed responsible enough to:
- Sign a contract giving your life to the United States government
- Sign & be responsible for loan agreements (including with the government)
- Purchase your own home
- Use tobacco products (state dependent)
- Be drafted by the government to fight in a war
- Purchase a vehicle
At 18 years of age though, the age of adulthood, the age at which you can be drafted to fight in a war for the United States government, and be trusted all kinds of weapons, you aren’t allowed to or be trusted to:
- Purchase alcohol
- Purchase a handgun from a licensed dealer
In fact, at 18 years of age, you can be tried as an adult for underage drinking. Let that sit in for a second. As an adult… you can be tried… or being underage.
As Judge Julius Richardson said in this case, “They (18 year-olds) enjoy almost every other constitutional right, and they were required at the time of the Founding to serve in the militia and furnish their own weapons.”
Unfortunately, this good news isn’t good news quite yet. The BATFE can still file for an appeal in front of all of the 4th Circuit Court judges, a majority of which a anti-gun Democrats from what I’ve read. The good news, regardless, is that there are judges across this nation that still support the rights of the people. We just need a great many more to make a difference.