Explore The NRA Universe Of Websites

APPEARS IN News

Respecting The Rights Of All Adults

Monday, December 13, 2010

By *** Required ***

Now that the commotion of the election season has given way to the peace of the holiday season, I hope you will find time to reflect on the blessings we enjoy as Americans—especially the courageous men and women who defend our freedoms abroad so we may enjoy this season in safety at home.

It`s troubling, though, that the freedoms they fight so selflessly to defend aren`t shared equally by all our citizens—including many of those soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines.

In the landmark District of Columbia v. Heller ruling, in which the U.S. Supreme Court held that the Second Amendment protects a fundamental, individual right for all Americans, the Court said "the American people have considered the handgun to be the quintessential self-defense weapon."

For law-abiding citizens throughout America, being able to own and carry handguns affords security from the world`s dangers. This is why NRA is backing James D`Cruz`s lawsuits against the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and against the Texas Department of Public Safety, both filed Sept. 8 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas.

Mr. D`Cruz is 18 years old and his suits challenge federal and state laws that infringe on the Second Amendment rights of people under age 21. At the federal level, the Gun Control Act of 1968 denies 18- to 20-year-olds the right to purchase handguns from federally licensed dealers. And Texas law doesn`t allow issuance of Right-to-Carry permits to people under age 21, other than current members of the armed forces or honorably discharged veterans.

Ironically, the Gun Control Act claims, "it is not the purpose of this title to place any undue or unnecessary federal restrictions or burdens on law-abiding citizens with respect to the acquisition, possession, or use of firearms." Restricting the right of law-abiding adult citizens to exercise their Second Amendment rights is both undue and unnecessary.

We should not allow these laws to circumvent what the Supreme Court has made clear in its Heller and McDonald v. Chicago rulings: the Second Amendment guarantees a fundamental, individual Right to Keep and Bear Arms for all law-abiding Americans.

And D`Cruz is certainly a law-abiding American—a responsible citizen, fully trained in the proper and safe use of firearms. He first learned to handle firearms from his grandfather, a veteran of World War ii, and continued his training as a member of the Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps, competing in regional and national marksmanship competitions.

As an 18-year-old citizen, D`Cruz should have all the rights that citizenship entails. He can vote in our elections. He can decide others` fates as a jury member. He even has to register for a potential draft under the Selective Service System. But he is denied the right to purchase or carry "the quintessential self-defense weapon" until his 21st birthday.

What`s especially troubling is that there are plenty of 18- to 20-year-olds who need to exercise their right to self-defense as much as anyone else. These adults often have very young children to protect and, since many are near the bottom of the workforce, they are more likely to live in higher-crime neighborhoods.

These young adults can join the military and put their lives on the line day after day, but upon their return, are reminded that some of the rights they fought to protect don`t apply to them.

And what about their loved ones, whom they leave behind when they fight for our freedoms? The law is clear—just like anyone else, military spouses under age 21 cannot buy handguns from licensed dealers to defend themselves when their husbands or wives are deployed in war zones halfway around the world. And in Texas and many other states, they can`t get carry permits.

Filing these cases was an important step toward guaranteeing all law-abiding citizens their fundamental freedoms. These cases are about protecting your life and your loved ones when no one else can or will.

We`re supporting D`Cruz`s lawsuits because we believe in his fundamental rights as an American citizen—rights guaranteed by the Constitution and confirmed by the Supreme Court. Federal and state law should respect his rights as well.

IN THIS ARTICLE
Handguns
TRENDING NOW
Turning a Right into a Privilege: HR 1112 Gives Feds Unfettered Power to Block Gun Sales

News  

Friday, February 15, 2019

Turning a Right into a Privilege: HR 1112 Gives Feds Unfettered Power to Block Gun Sales

H.R. 8, which would criminalize the private transfer of firearms, has received significant attention from the gun rights community. However, H.R. 1112, which purportedly targets the inappropriately-named “Charleston loophole,” is just as insidious an attack ...

Washington: Hearing for Bill to Expand Gun Seizures Without Due Process

Monday, February 18, 2019

Washington: Hearing for Bill to Expand Gun Seizures Without Due Process

On February 19th, the Washington state Senate Committee on Law & Justice will be holding an executive session on Senate Bill 5745 to expand the circumstances under which Second Amendment rights may be revoked without ...

H.R. 8 Markup: Liberal Democrats Markup Gun Control Legislation

News  

Friday, February 15, 2019

H.R. 8 Markup: Liberal Democrats Markup Gun Control Legislation

The Nancy Pelosi Speaker Era 2.0 continued on Wednesday, Feb. 13, with a markup of H.R 8, the “universal” background checks bill, in the House Judiciary Committee. Following on the heels of last week’s Judiciary Committee hearing, the same committee held a markup on ...

Texas: Setting the Record Straight On "Red Flag" Legislation

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Texas: Setting the Record Straight On "Red Flag" Legislation

Over the holiday weekend, a conservative "taxpayer watchdog" group sent out an email to its contact list which gave the impression that NRA-ILA supports "red flag" legislation in Texas.  One wonders what the organization hoped to accomplish by confusing and attempting to divide ...

Another Study Blames Guns, Excludes Reality

News  

Friday, February 15, 2019

Another Study Blames Guns, Excludes Reality

A study published in Preventative Medicine by Yu Lu and Jeff R. Temple concludes that “the majority of mental health symptoms examined were not related to gun violence. Instead, access to firearms was the primary culprit.”

California: City of Los Angeles Discriminates Against NRA Supporters

Friday, February 15, 2019

California: City of Los Angeles Discriminates Against NRA Supporters

This week, the City Council Members of Los Angeles showed their extreme distain of the Second Amendment, the NRA and our supporters.  On February 12, the City Council held the first reading of a proposed ordinance that ...

Polls: No Lasting Support for Gun Control One Year After Parkland

News  

Friday, February 15, 2019

Polls: No Lasting Support for Gun Control One Year After Parkland

Thursday marked the one year anniversary of the terrible crimes at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, FL. It was a somber occasion, but some media outlets couldn’t contain their glee this week that ...

Maryland: 2019 Legislative Session Begins with a Slew of Anti-Gun Bills Introduced

Thursday, February 7, 2019

Maryland: 2019 Legislative Session Begins with a Slew of Anti-Gun Bills Introduced

With the 2019 Maryland Legislative Session underway, gun control groups have made the General Assembly a target for their anti-gun agenda. 

Ohio: Legislative Fix Introduced to Correct Drafting Error

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Ohio: Legislative Fix Introduced to Correct Drafting Error

The Senate Government Oversight and Reform Committee could soon consider Senate Bill 53. 

Maryland: Please Attend House and Senate Committee Hearings on Gun Bills

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Maryland: Please Attend House and Senate Committee Hearings on Gun Bills

The House Judiciary Committee and the Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee are scheduled to hold hearings on multiple gun bills in the coming days. 

MORE TRENDING +
LESS TRENDING -

More Like This From Around The NRA

NRA ILA

Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.