In the wake of the shooting at Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, there has been nationwide attention on gun violence and gun sales. There have been youth-led protests concerning the subject all over the country and both sides of the debate are hard at work. One of the major bones of contention is for the raising of the legal age to buy a gun from 18 to 21.
This issue is coming to the forefront in the state Oregon, where a 20-year-old man has filed two lawsuits. One has been filed against Walmart Inc. and the other against Dicks Sporting Goods. The bases of the suits has to do with the companies raising their required age limits.
Tyler Watson of Golden Hill, Oregon filed two separate lawsuits against two companies in two different counties in Oregon. He is asking that the courts order the retailers to halt their new policies in the state of Oregon. The first suit, filed in Jackson County, was against Dick’s Field and Stream stemming from a February 24th incident. Watson tried to purchase a .22 caliber rifle from the store and was denied due to his age. The purchase was denied 4 days before the company officially announced the age change from 18 to 21.
The next incident happened at Walmart on March 3rd. He tried to buy the same type of .22 caliber rifle from Walmart, in Josephine County and was denied due to his age again. His major accusation against the retailers is that they are violating the state’s age discrimination law and he filed both suits on March 5th.
The state of Oregon does have an extensive law protecting people against age discrimination. On the federal level, this law applies to people 40-year-old and older. In Oregon, the law generally prohibits age discrimination in the selling of goods to people over the age of 18.
“It is only because of this unusual state law that there is even an opportunity to bring this claim,” said John Donohue, a professor at Stanford Law School. The laws in Oregon are creating a questionable situation for the courts to have to hear this case.
Walmart is not moving from their stance. “We stand by our decision and plan to defend it,” said Walmart spokesman Randy Hargrove.
This is indicative of the issues surrounding guns and gun violence that is circulating in this country right now. It has gotten to the point where even students are taking a stance on the subject. They are holding protests and lobbying their local representatives for changes.
The students around this country are taking a stance and are caring about their safety while they are going to school. It is something that the youth of America are taking seriously and they want the adults of this country to do something to guarantee their safety.
It is a serious issue when the students of American high schools are realizing the possible danger that guns pose to them. They want change in the gun laws of this country and they want it soon.