The National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) issued a press release March 1 reminding Americans that government did not give us our rights and therefore is not in a position to regulate them via age restrictions.
The release follows President Trump’s push to raise the minimum age for a rifle purchase from 18 years old to 21.
NSSF stressed that the source of our rights is God, not government. We are “endowed by our Creator” not by our House, Senate, or President. Because this is so, our rights were “carefully safeguarded by our founding fathers” via the Bill of Rights.
Our right to practice our religion. Our right to a free speech. Our right to a free press and our individual right to keep and bear arms. This was affirmed by the U.S. Supreme Court in the 2008 Heller v. District of Columbia decision. In writing the majority opinion, Justice Antonin Scalia was specific not only in affirming the Second Amendment as an individual right, but specifically addressing possession of rifles such as the AR-15.
Those rights apply to all American adults. When a man or woman turns 18, that person is an adult fully-vested in all their constitutional rights. They have the complete right to speak and are assured protection against illegal search and seizure. They have the right to vote and the right to keep and bear arms. Denial of that right, based upon an arbitrary age requirement, relegates the Second Amendment to a second-class right.
NSSF observes that gun controllers miss the mark with suggestions that 18-year olds should not be able to buy a rifle because they are too young to buy a beer or rent a car. NSSF points out that drinking beer and driving cars are not constitutional rights, unlike the God-given, natural right to keep and bear arms.
NSSF also shows that raising legal purchase age to 21 “will not save lives” anyway, so it is a failed proposition. It is an idea that will not achieve its stated goal but which “will violate constitutional rights.”
AWR Hawkins is an award-winning Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News, the host of the Breitbart podcast Bullets with AWR Hawkins, and the writer/curator of Down Range with AWR Hawkins, a weekly newsletter focused on all things Second Amendment, also for Breitbart News. He is the political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at email@example.com. Sign up to get Down Range at breitbart.com/downrange.