“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.”
You may recall our coverage of the first major 2nd Amendment case to make it to the U.S. Supreme Court in over a decade, New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, Inc. v. Bruen (docket), New York Concealed Carry Restrictions Seem Likely To Fall As Important 2nd Amendment Case Argued In Supreme Court:
It’s been a decade since the U.S. Supreme Court took a major Second Amendment case, much to the chagrin of Justice Clarence Thomas.
But today was argument in New York State Rifle & Pistol Assn. v. Bruen, a case we previously covered, Supreme Court Agrees To Hear 2nd Amendment Case Over NY Restrictions On Concealed Carry:
Today, the U.S. Supreme Court granted review in New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Corlett (now v. Bruen), a case challenging the constitutionality of New York State’s concealed carry licensing scheme. The case argues that New York’s “may issue” licensing scheme violates individuals’ Second Amendment-protected rights—but could mean a lot more for gun rights across the nation.
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The case could have wide implications, as we previously wrote:
New York State generally prohibits the carriage of a firearm in public—both openly and concealed. An individual can only carry a firearm concealed if they apply for and receive a license issued by a state “licensing officer.” But in New York, a concealed carry license isn’t so easy to come by.
A licensing officer will only issue a concealed carry permit if the applicant meets a lengthy list of criteria, including things such as being twenty-one years of age or older, being “of good moral character,” and not having been convicted of a felony or “a serious offense.” This list, although long, is fairly standard among states that require citizens to get a permit to carry a firearm concealed.
But New York is what is called a “may issue” state, meaning the state adds an additional barrier to getting a permit. A licensing officer will only issue a concealed carry license to an applicant “when proper cause exists for the issuance thereof.” In contrast, “shall issue” states require the licensing authority to issue a concealed carry license to an applicant so long as they are not specifically prohibited from having one.
New York’s discretionary consideration makes it all but impossible for law-abiding Americans to receive a permit to carry a firearm concealed in New York.
The burden is placed on the applicant to “demonstrate a special need for self-protection distinguishable from that of the general community or of persons engaged in the same profession.” In other words, an applicant’s mere desire to carry a firearm for the purpose of self-defense is not “proper cause” in the eyes of New York.
The Court just struck down the law, in a 6-3 Opinion authored by Justice Thomas:
In District of Columbia v. Heller, 554 U. S. 570 (2008), and McDonald v. Chicago, 561 U. S. 742 (2010), we recognized that the Second and Fourteenth Amendments protect the right of an ordinary, law-abiding citizen to possess a handgun in the home for self-defense. In this case, petitioners and respondents agree that ordinary, law-abiding citizens have a similar right to carry handguns publicly for their self-defense. 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.
The parties nevertheless dispute whether New York’s licensing regime respects the constitutional right to carry handguns publicly for self-defense. In 43 States, the government issues licenses to carry based on objective criteria. But in six States, including New York, the government further conditions issuance of a license to carry on a citizen’s showing of some additional special need. 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.
MORE TO FOLLOW (updating by MC)
“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.” pic.twitter.com/kwbi5hnI96
— Dana Loesch (@DLoesch) June 23, 2022
Notable Supreme Court decision on gun rights just dropped –
Justice Thomas: "the Second and Fourteenth Amendments protect an individual's right to carry a handgun for self-defense outside the home."https://t.co/EiCL9RBZQu
— Techno Fog (@Techno_Fog) June 23, 2022
"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." pic.twitter.com/JaJn8xTD67
— Storm Paglia 🇺🇸 (@storm_paglia) June 23, 2022
CNN's Jessica Schneider claims SCOTUS striking down New York's restrictive concealed carry law will lead to an explosion of mass shootings in Times Square.
"Several mass shootings in the last few months … And the concern [is] … handguns in populated places like Times Square" pic.twitter.com/FBvhPd8g3R
— Nicholas Fondacaro (@NickFondacaro) June 23, 2022
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