The Supreme Court ruled Thursday that New York’s regulations on obtaining a license to carry a concealed handgun were unconstitutional.
The court’s 6-3 ruling comes as Congress is working on gun control legislation following a series of recent mass shootings .
New Yorkers were required to show “proper cause” for seeking a license on their application, and officials were allowed to determine if a person has a good enough reason for needing to carry a firearm.
Under that regulation, seeking to protect oneself or their property was not a strong enough reason.
“In this case, petitioners and respondents agree that ordinary, law-abiding citizens have a similar right to carry handguns publicly for their self-defense,” Justice Clarence Thomas wrote in the Court’s opinion.
“We too agree, and now hold, consistent with Heller and McDonald, that the Second and Fourteenth Amendments protect an individual’s right to carry a handgun for self-defense outside the home,” he continued.
Because the State of New York issues public-carry licenses only when an applicant demonstrates a special need for self-defense, we conclude that the State’s licensing regime violates the Constitution.Justice Clarence Thomas
New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, Inc. v. Bruen is the first major gun rights case presented to the Supreme Court in over a decade.
During the court’s arguments, Justice Brett Kavanaugh asked “Why isn’t it good enough to say I live in a violent area and I want to defend myself?”
While many are happy with the Supreme Court’s ruling, others are frustrated and upset.
“It is outrageous that at a moment of national reckoning on gun violence, the Supreme Court has recklessly struck down a New York law that limits those who can carry concealed weapons,” said New York Governor Kathy Hochul.
“In response to this ruling, we are closely reviewing our options – including calling a special session of the legislature,” she said on Twitter.