A Supreme Court ruling has just expanded gun rights - here's how people are reacting

A Supreme Court ruling has just expanded gun rights - here's how people are reacting
US Supreme Court strikes down New York restriction on guns

The Supreme Court of the United States struck down a New York law that required residents to prove "proper cause" to carry a concealed firearm saying it violates the Second Amendment and people are not happy.

This is the first time the Court has ruled on a gun-control related matter in over a decade and comes as gun violence deaths continue to climb in the US.

In a 6-3 decision, Justice Clarance Thomas wrote the majority opinion saying: "We know of no other constitutional right that an individual may exercise only after demonstrating to government officers some special need. That is not how the First Amendment works when it comes to unpopular speech or the free exercise of religion.

"It is not how the Sixth Amendment works when it comes to a defendant’s right to confront the witnesses against him. And it is not how the Second Amendment works when it comes to public carry for self defense."

“Put simply, there is no historical basis for New York to effectively declare the island of Manhattan a ‘sensitive place’ simply because it is crowded and protected generally by the New York City Police Department," Thomas wrote.

Sign up for our free Indy100 weekly newsletter

The ruling may have negative consequences for states like California, New Jersey, Connecticut, and more who have similar laws in place.

In response, President Biden released a statement expressing his disappointment in the ruling and added that he remains "committed to doing everything in my power to reduce gun violence and make our communities safer."

Vice President Kamala Harris tweeted on the ruling saying it is "deeply troubling as it defies commonsense and the Constitution" and suggested members of Congress pass a bi-partisan bill implementing gun safety laws.

On Twitter people criticized the ruling with many believing it to the incorrect decision and fearing for the precedent it may set.

Gun violence has become a public health crisis in the US with over 270 mass shootings having occurred in 2022 alone.

Most recently, a devastating mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvlade, Texas and a racially-motivated shooting at a supermarket in Buffalo, New York.

Both shootings were conducted with AR-15 style rifles.

"Many States have tried to address some of the dangers of gun violence just described by passing laws that limit, in various ways, who may purchase, carry, or use firearms of different kinds," Justice Stephen Breyer wrote in the dissenting opinion, citing CDC data of 45,222 deaths via firearms in 2020.

"The Court today severely burdens States’ efforts to do so," Justice Breyer added.

As the Supreme Court ruling became public the Senate began debating a gun control bill that enhances background checks for those trying to purchase a gun between 18 and 21 years old, incentivize states to enact "red flag laws", and provide mental health and school safety funding .

Have your say in our news democracy. Click the upvote icon at the top of the page to help raise this article through the indy100 rankings.

The Conversation (0)