Human Rights Group Sues Over Gun Purchase Waiting Periods For Those Under 21
WICHITA FALLS, Texas -(Ammoland.com)- Gun Owners of America (GOA), Gun Owner Foundation (GOF), and several Texas young adults have filed suit in a federal court in Texas over provisions in the Bi-partisan Safer Communities Act that require an enhanced background check for guy buyers under the age of 21.
After a tragic attack on Robb Elementary in Uvalde, TX, John Cornyn (R-TX) and Chris Murphy (D-CT) worked on a gun control bill that would become known as the “Bi-partisan Safer Communities Act.” Part of the bill requires enhanced background checks for those under the age of 21, leading to delays. GOA believes that these delays violate the young adult’s Constitutionally protected rights.
“GOA repeatedly warned legislators and the public how this would grossly violate young Americans’ Constitutional rights, and yet Texas Senator John Cornyn compromised away those rights anyway. Now we see young adults frequently and routinely being denied their right to purchase a firearm in a timely manner, and this right delayed is unjustly a right denied. Compromise is no way to legislate when dealing with people’s God-given rights,” said GOA Senior Vice President Erich Pratt in a statement released to the press.
After the passage of the bill, the FBI conducts an enhanced background check that pulls the prospective buyer’s juvenile record, contacts local law enforcement, and checks mental health records. Any hits on any of these could cause a person to be denied. Juvenile records are usually sealed, and mistakes as a child typically are not held against a person when they become an adult.
One issue with the system is that some agencies will respond to the FBI to provide records to be used for the enhanced background check, but others will not. If the FBI cannot get the records, then the perspective gun owner will be denied the transfer even though they were not disqualified. That means that the rights of the purchaser would be denied through no fault of their own.
A panel of three judges from the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals recently upheld Florida’s age restriction on certain firearms for those under 21. GOA’s lawyers state they know the Defendant will use that case. Hence, the attorneys point out that the court used a law from the ratification date of the Fourteenth Amendment (1868) instead of the ratification date of the Second Amendment (1791). Another federal court in Virginia this week pointed out how the Eleventh Circuit erred in using the reconstruction date.
The gun rights groups claim that there is no original text, history, or tradition for enhanced background checks for those under 21. In fact, there is no original text, history, or tradition for any background check for guns.
And the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) is not always instant and experiences frequent outages.
The groups are asking the court to issue a temporary restraining order (TRO) and a preliminary injunction against the new law. GOA and GOF claim that they are likely to succeed on the merits of the case, and the plaintiffs are suffering irreparable harm. Both factors must be satisfied for an injunction can be issued.
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About John Crump
John is a NRA instructor and a constitutional activist. John has written about firearms, interviewed people of all walks of life, and on the Constitution. John lives in Northern Virginia with his wife and sons and can be followed on Twitter at @crumpyss, or at www.crumpy.com.