Sen. Feinstein Will Introduce Legislation to Change Minimum Age Requirements for Gun Purchases

Posted: Feb 17, 2018 1:30 PM
Sen. Feinstein Will Introduce Legislation to Change Minimum Age Requirements for Gun Purchases

On Friday, Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) said she will introduce legislation that would raise the minimum age requirements for purchasing a rifle from a gun dealer.

About the Proposed Legislation

According to a press release, Feinstein said she wants to see the minimum age requirements moved from 18 to 21-years-old:

Under current law, licensed gun dealers cannot sell a handgun to anyone under 21, but they are allowed to sell assault rifles like the AR-15 to anyone over 18. This policy is dangerous and makes absolutely no sense.

I plan to introduce a bill to require all firearms purchases from gun dealers be restricted to individuals who are at least 21 years old. If you can’t buy a handgun or a bottle of beer, you shouldn’t be able to buy an AR-15.

This is common sense and I hope my Republican colleagues will join me in this effort.

Feinstein's declaration comes after 17 people were killed Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida on Wednesday.

Feinstein's proposal received a mixed reaction. 

Assault Rifle Versus Assault Weapon

Stephen Gutowski of the Washington Free Beacon put together a presentation that adequately describes the difference between assault rifles and assault weapons.

Here are the definitions:

Assault Rifle is the technical term, depending on how the firearm functions.

The Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) Small Arms Identification and Operation Guide definition says:

Assault rifles are short, compact, selective-fire weapons that fire a cartridge intermediate in power between submachinegun and rifle cartridges. Assault rifles have mid recoil characteristics and, becuase of this, are capable of delivering effective automatice fire at ranges up to 300 meters.

Assault Weapon is a political term based mainly on cosmetic features and accessories.

California's definition under the "Assault Weapons Characteristics" is the go-to version. Here's what it says:

12276.1 (a) Notwithstanding Section 12276, "assault weapon" shall also mean any of the following:
  1. A semiautomatic, centerfire rifle that has the capacity to accept a detachable magazine and any one of the following:

    1. A pistol grip that protrudes conspicuously beneath the action of the weapon.
    2. A thumbhole stock.
    3. A folding or telescoping stock.
    4. A grenade launcher or flare launcher.
    5. A flash suppressor.
    6. A forward pistol grip.

About the AR-15

Because gun control advocates are quick to go after the AR-15, it's important to clear up a bit of confusion.

Anti-gunners are quick to label the "AR-15" an "assault weapon" because they assume AR stands for "assault rifle." In reality, AR is short for Armalite, the original manufacturer of the AR-15. 

All Armalite rifles were designed AR, which was short of Armalite rifle. The 15 comes from the model number. The AR-15 was the Armalite Rifle model 15.