The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Brady Center Urges Court to Throw Out NRA Lawsuit to Allow Teenagers to Carry Concealed Firearms


The Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence
today filed a brief in the United States District Court for the
Northern District of Texas urging the court to throw out an NRA lawsuit
claiming that teens and young persons ages 18-20 have a constitutional
right to carry loaded, concealed weapons in public.

is dangerous and reckless for the NRA to claim that teenagers should be
allowed to carry loaded semiautomatic weapons on our streets and
playgrounds. The Second Amendment
allows for commonsense gun laws, it doesn't require that we legally
allow armed teens in our communities," said Brady Center President Paul

The lawsuit, filed by the National Rifle Association,
claims that the Second Amendment requires that states allow teens and
young persons ages 18-20 to carry loaded firearms in public. It seeks
to overturn a Texas law that generally prohibits the carrying of loaded,
concealed weapons by people under age 21. Texas is one of 36 states
that restricts the possession or carrying of firearms by teens and young
persons ages 18-20. The Texas Constitution specifically allows the
regulation of public gun carrying, stating that the "Legislature shall
have power, by law, to regulate the wearing of arms, with a view to
prevent crime."

The brief cites
studies showing that young persons under 21 often lack the same ability
as adults to "govern impulsivity, judgment, planning for the future,
and foresight of consequences." People aged 18-20 fall within the age
range of offenders who commit the highest rates homicide and engage in
criminal gun possession.

According to the Brady Center brief,
the U.S. Supreme Court has held that the Second Amendment protects a
limited, narrow "right of law-abiding, responsible citizens to use arms
in defense of hearth and home" but has also made clear that the right to
bear arms "is not infringed by laws prohibiting the carrying of
concealed weapons." Laws restricting teenage gun possession and
carrying are reasonable gun laws permissible under the Second Amendment.

The Brady Center amicus brief was filed today in the case D'Cruz v. McCraw by attorneys with the Brady Center, the law firm Hogan Lovells and Texas attorney Scott Medlock. The Brady Center was joined on the brief by Texas organizations Mothers Against Teen Violence and the Texas Chapters of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence.

Brady United formerly known as The Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence and its legislative and grassroots affiliate, the Brady Campaign and its dedicated network of Million Mom March Chapters, is the nation's largest, non-partisan, grassroots organization leading the fight to prevent gun violence. We are devoted to creating an America free from gun violence, where all Americans are safe at home, at school, at work, and in our communities.