The Supreme Court just struck down a New York gun law that places restrictions on carrying a concealed gun outside the home.
In 2008, the Supreme Court held for the first time that the Second Amendment protects an individual’s right to keep and bear arms at home for self-defense.
After the ruling, however, to the frustration of gun rights advocates, lower courts relied upon language in the opinion to uphold many gun regulations.
Then-Justice Antonin Scalia wrote for the majority in the Heller case,
Nothing in our opinion should be taken to cast doubt on longstanding prohibitions on the possession of firearms by felons and the mentally ill, or laws forbidding the carrying of firearms in sensitive places such as schools and government buildings.”
Except for a followup decision two years later, the justices largely stayed away from the issue, infuriating gun rights advocates and even some of the justices themselves.
Justice Clarence Thomas declared at one point that the
Second Amendment is a disfavored right in this court.”
After Justice Amy Coney Barrett took her seat, the court agreed to take up a new case, highlighting the impact of Trump‘s three nominees on the court.
According to CNN, New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen concerned a New York law governing licenses to carry concealed handguns in public for self-defense. It requires a resident to obtain a license to carry a concealed pistol or revolver and demonstrate that “proper cause” exists for the permit.
Residents must show that they have a great need for the license and that they face a
special or unique danger to their life.”
During oral arguments, several of the justices asked questions surrounding regulations aimed at sensitive places, including the subways.
Paul Clement, a lawyer for the NRA affiliate behind the challenge, argued that New York is
entitled to have laws that say that you can’t have weapons in sensitive places”
He said he was not challenging those laws.
According to Slate,
The decision will unleash a tidal wave of lower court rulings invalidating laws designed to protect Americans from the carnage of gun violence. And it will stymie current efforts to reduce that violence through innovative new solutions to this epidemic. For gun control advocates, it is the worst-case scenario.
NYC Mayor Eric Adams said the ruling will put New Yorkers
at further risk of gun violence.”
In a statement, he vowed specific action to mitigate the risks he said that the decision creates,
We cannot allow New York to become the Wild West.”
You can read the entire ruling here.
BREAKING | Supreme Court rules New York’s century-old concealed carry handgun law violated the Second Amendment— New York Daily News (@NYDailyNews) June 23, 2022
The 6 to 3 decision, which is the court’s most significant gun-rights ruling in more than a decade, voided the state’s Sullivan Act.https://t.co/oAYx82pePi
(Photo, Wikimedia Commons; via CNN)