Appeals court rules firearms dealers can sell handguns to 18-year-olds

Appeals court rules firearms dealers can sell handguns to 18-year-olds


A 53-year-old law preventing federally licensed firearms dealers from selling handguns or handgun ammunition to adults under the age of 21 is unconstitutional, a federal appeals court ruled Tuesday.

A divided panel on the Richmond, Va.-based Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals overturned a Virginia federal judge’s ruling upholding the federal Gun Control Act of 1968.

“When do constitutional rights vest? At 18 or 21? 16 or 25? Why not 13 or 33?” asked US Circuit Judge Julius Richardson in his ruling. “In the law, a line must sometimes be drawn. But there must be a reason why constitutional rights cannot be enjoyed until a certain age. 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.”

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Richardson, who was appointed to the bench by former President Donald Trump, went on to note that 18-to-20-year-olds “enjoy almost every other constitutional right, and they were required at

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