Pennsylvania cannot bar adults under 21 from carrying guns - MilectoPennsylvania cannot bar adults under 21 from carrying guns - Milecto

A federal appeals court ruled on Thursday that Pennsylvania rules that say 18–20-year-olds can’t carry guns in public during a state of emergency are illegal. By a vote of 2-1, the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia decided that people under the age of 21 have the right to keep and bear arms under the Second Amendment. They did this by noting a major U.S. Supreme Court ruling that increased gun rights.

This is the most recent case of a court throwing out a gun law. This comes after the conservative majority of the Supreme Court’s decision in New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen in June 2022 changed the law on gun control. In that important decision, it was finally agreed that the Second Amendment protects a person’s right to carry a gun in public for self-defense. The result also brought a new way of looking at gun laws, saying that limits should be in line with how guns have been regulated in the country in the past.

U.S. Circuit Judge Kent Jordan said in his latest decision on Thursday that the term “the people” in the Second Amendment naturally means all adults in the United States, which includes people aged 18 to 20. He said that there is no rule from the time of the beginning that says people in that age range should not be allowed to have guns. U.S. Circuit Judge D. Brooks Smith, who was also appointed by former President George W. Bush, agreed with his point of view.

A different opinion was given by U.S. Circuit Judge L. Felipe Restrepo, who was chosen by former Democratic President Barack Obama. He said that the Second Amendment does not protect people younger than 21. The ruling by the court was a win for the Second Amendment Foundation, the Firearms Policy Coalition, and a group of young Pennsylvanians who sued the state in 2020 to overturn its rules on 18–20-year-olds having guns.

The Executive Director of the Second Amendment Foundation, Adam Kraut, said he was happy with the result and stressed that it ensures these people can protect themselves in a situation. On the other hand, a spokeswoman for Democratic Pennsylvania Attorney General Michelle Henry, who supported the state’s laws, said that she was disappointed with the decision and that they are looking into their options for a possible appeal. In Pennsylvania, you have to be at least 21 years old to get a licence to carry a gun on your person. People who don’t have a licence can usually carry guns in public without getting caught, but during a state of emergency, people who don’t have a licence or who meet certain conditions were not allowed to carry guns on public streets or land.


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