November 30, 2021 6:36 pm
Supreme Court to hear case on New York’s gun permit law

Supreme Court to hear case on New York’s gun permit law

WASHINGTON(AP) — A gun rights case could see more guns on New York and Los Angeles streets and potentially restrict gun ownership in public places like subways, airports and churches.

The case that the justices will hear Wednesday comes as gun violence has risen ,, and it could drastically increase the number eligible to carry firearms in their day-to-day lives. The case concerns New York’s restrictive gun law. It is unclear whether the challengers have the right to carry a firearm in public defense.

Gun control organizations claim that if the high court orders states to remove restrictions, there will be more violence. Gun rights groups argue that the danger of confrontation is exactly why they have the right to carry weapons for self-defense.

Gun rights advocates hope the court with its 6-3 conservative majority will side with them. They ask the court to declare that the New York law is too restrictive. Similar laws are in other states. Gun control advocates admit that the court’s composition makes them nervous about what might happen.

” The stakes could not have been higher,” stated Jonathan Lowy (chief counsel for the gun control group Brady).

The court last issued major gun rights decisions in 2008 and 2010. These decisions established a national right to have a gun at your home for self-defense. Now, the court will decide if there is a Second Amendment right to carry firearms in public.

This is not an issue in most areas of the country where gun owners are able to legally carry their guns when they go outside. A half dozen states, including California, which is populated, have restrictions on gun ownership. These laws “may issue” laws could be upheld by the justices.

The fact that the high courts are hearing a gun rights case is a significant change from years of routinely turning away these cases. One gun case the justices did agree to hear ended anticlimactically in 2020 when the justices threw out the case.

But following the death of liberal Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg last year and her replacement by conservative Justice Amy Coney Barrett, the court agreed to wade into the gun debate again.

Eric Tirschwell, the legal director at Everytown for Gun Safety, said there’s “reason to be concerned” for groups like his that “a type of law that the court was not interested in or willing to review in the past, they now are.”

The New York law the court is reviewing has been in place since 1913 and says that to carry a concealed handgun in public for self-defense, a person applying for a license has to demonstrate “proper cause,” an actual need to carry the weapon. Local officials can issue gun licenses that are either unrestricted, which allows the person to carry the gun wherever it is not prohibited by law, or restricted, which allows the person to carry the gun only in specific circumstances. This could be for hunting, target shooting, or traveling in the backcountry.

The New York State Rifle & Pistol Association and two private citizens challenging the law have told the Supreme Court that it “makes it effectively impossible for an ordinary, law-abiding citizen to obtain a license to carry a handgun for self-defense.”

Lawyers for the group say the text of the Second Amendment, along with history and tradition, supports their argument that there’s a right to carry a gun outside the home. According to the group, New York’s gun law is discriminatory in origin. It was originally designed to allow officials broad latitude to prevent guns from being taken by newly arrived immigrants from Europe, especially Italians.

New York denies this and claims that the Second Amendment permits states to limit the carrying of guns in public. It also cites history, tradition, and the Second Amendment’s text. According to the state, its restrictions promote public safety. This is based on research showing that gun-related homicides are lower in places that allow public firearms carry. New York’s law doesn’t prohibit guns, but rather imposes moderate restrictions.

Tom King is the president of New York State Rifle & Pistol Association. He said that New York’s law has a problem in that a person’s chances of getting an unrestricted permit will depend on whether he/she is located in a rural area or urban one. Both gun rights advocates and gun control advocates believe that the court will not rule as broadly as it might. They will also be watching the arguments of the three newest members to see clues.

The three former president Donald Trump appointees — Brett Kavanaugh, Neil Gorsuch and Barrett — are conservatives who were not present when major gun rights rulings were issued. Gun rights advocates have reason to be optimistic, however, given their actions thus far.

In 2011, as an appeals court judge, Kavanaugh argued in a dissent that the District of Columbia’s ban on semi-automatic rifles and its gun registration requirement were unconstitutional. He urged court to consider another gun case, as he was concerned about lower courts not following Supreme Court precedent.

Gorsuch, for his part, would have decided the 2020 gun case his colleagues threw out. Barrett, an appeals court judge, wrote in disapproval that a conviction of a nonviolent felony shouldn’t automatically make someone unqualified from owning guns. She said that her colleagues were treating Second Amendment as a “second class right Gun control groups hope that conservatives will still vote to keep New York’s law. In a brief sent to the court ., prominent conservatives including J. Michael Luttig (ex-federal appeals court judge) urged the court to do this. In a 7-4 decision earlier this year, the judges of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected a challenge of Hawaii’s permit regulations. Conservative judge Jay Bybee wrote that a “review of more than 700 years of English and American legal history reveals a strong theme: government has the power to regulate arms in the public square.”

The court’s three liberal justices are widely expected to side with New York.

Other states’ laws may be affected depending on what the justices decide. Biden’s administration is asking the justices not to overturn New York’s law. It claims that California, Hawaii and Massachusetts all have similar laws. Although they have slightly different laws, Connecticut and Delaware both have “may issue” legislation.