U.S.A. –-(AmmoLand.com)- The United States Supreme Court ruled (6-3) in favor of NYSPRA in the New York Pistol Rifle Association v. Bruen.
The decision was written by Supreme Court Justice Thomas stating, “the Second and Fourteenth Amendments protect an individual’s right to carry a handgun for self-defense outside the home.”
This is a major win for law-abiding Americans, as the scrutiny of “proper cause” justification for concealed carry of a firearm is unconstitutional.
The New York Pistol Rifle Association (NYPRA) sued New York State over the Empire State’s concealed carry scheme that requires gun owners to show “proper cause” before the State would issue a permit to carry a gun concealed. While the average person cannot get a license to carry, people with the money and resources can afford to obtain a permit to carry. Some view this disparity as unfair because it allows New York’s upper class to protect themselves while the average citizen is stripped of their right to bear arms.
New York’s concealed carry law has been on the books for over a hundred years. The law was set up to prevent newly arriving European immigrants from carrying the means to protect themselves. Immigrants from certain European countries such as Ireland were considered “undesirable.” The NYPRA challenged the law claiming that it violates the right to bear arms as enumerated in the Second Amendment.
In 2015, Robert Nash of Rensselaer County was granted a pistol permit that allowed him to carry a pistol concealed while hunting. In 2016, a string of robberies plagued Mr. Nash’s neighborhood, and he sought to expand his concealed carry permit to be able to carry all the time. New York denied the man a permit claiming he didn’t display a “special need” for the license.
New York claimed that the “may issue” law should be allowed to stand because of “public interest” and “public safety.” The State argued that violent crime would increase if the law were knocked down. New York believes that the Constitution allows the State to regulate the permitting process.
This historic decision is the high court’s first decision involving firearms law since the McDonald case over a decade ago.
The NYPRA v. Bruen decision will change gun laws across the country. Nine states in the country are “may issue.” The rest of the country is either “shall issue” or Constitutional carry.
Anti-gun groups such as Brady and Everytown for Gun Safety have been bracing for the decision since SCOTUS granted cert. With the court’s makeup, anti-gun groups believed that the court would side with NYPRS. The groups went on the offense to try to swing the Supreme Court’s opinion through political pressure. Their efforts were unsuccessful. Justice Thomas finished his opinion by writing:
New York’s proper-cause requirement violates the Fourteenth Amendment in that it prevents law-abiding citizens with ordinary self-defense needs from exercising their right to keep and bear arms. We therefore reverse the judgment of the Court of Appeals and remand the case for further proceedings consistent with this opinion.
This historic decision will be talked about and debated for years to come.
About John Crump
John is a NRA instructor and a constitutional activist. John has written about firearms, interviewed people of all walks of life, and on the Constitution. John lives in Northern Virginia with his wife and sons and can be followed on Twitter at @crumpyss, or at www.crumpy.com.