Collegians at Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts hosted a discussion from Shaneen Allen, an outspoken Second Amendment advocate, Tyler Yzaguirre from the Second Amendment Institute, and Dick Heller, the focal point of the landmark Heller Supreme Court case, to discuss the importance of protecting gun rights in America, and the role this plays in protecting hunting, conservation, and sportsmen’s rights.
Shaneen Allen is a single mother of two who was arrested in New Jersey in 2014 for having a weapon that was unlawful to own in New Jersey. The catch: the weapon was a handgun, and Allen is a Pennsylvania resident who had acquired all the necessary licenses in her home State. Having purchased the gun in 2013 after being mugged in an alley, Allen carried it with her at all times for self-defense. When she was pulled over during a routine traffic stop, she informed the officer that she had a gun as well the necessary paperwork.
The reward for complying with her State’s rules to try to protect herself and her family was jail time. Thankfully, then Governor of New Jersey Chris Christie pardoned Shaneen Allen. Since then, she has been a strong advocate for Second Amendment rights. Allen has been campaigning for federal legislation to ensure those travelling with
concealed carry permits are not at risk of jail time from states with more stringent laws.
“Hopefully I’ll be at the White House next to (President) Trump signing this bill,” Allen has said.
Many college students around the country are avid hunters and sportsmen, but campus and city laws that severely restrict the means of transporting and owning weapons create a gray area for these collegians. “Hunting is part of our heritage. It’s part of an American tradition that dates back to our founding fathers (and before),” said Yzaguirre, founder and President of the Second Amendment Institute. “While it’s not mentioned in the Constitution specially, numerous state constitutions name hunting as a right.”
Also contributing to the conversation was Dick Heller, who was a security officer in the District of Columbia, and was forced to leave his gun at work when he returned home every day due to the city’s harsh gun laws. Heller sued on the grounds that he should be able to own and possess the weapon traveling to and within his home for self defense. The landmark 5-4 decision in favor of Mr. Heller confirmed every American’s right to own a firearm even if they are not a member of a militia or the military.
“The speakers did an amazing job advocating for gun rights,” said Aubrey Kenderdine, a senior. “Hunters and sportsmen aren’t only protected under the Constitution, they provide a necessary element to conservation by incentivizing keeping species alive through free markets.”
The event was part of CFACT’s Save Our Species Campaign, which draws attention to benefits that hunting and free markets can have in species management and survival.