US Supreme Court extends the right to bear arms in public, despite recent shootings


Not even the 19 children and two teachers killed at Robb Elementary in Uvalde, Texas; the 10 people who lost their lives in a supermarket in Buffalo, New York; or the dozens of victims of the more than 245 shootings registered in the country could stop the decision of the Supreme Court in favor of expanding the right to bear arms.

This Thursday, with a vote of 6 to 3, with most conservative justices, the court declared for the first time that the United States Constitution protects a person’s right to carrying a firearm in public for self-defense.

The ruling, written by Judge Clarence Thomasdeclared that the Constitution protects “the right of an individual to carry a firearm for self-defense outside the home.”

With this decision, the Supreme Court struck down a New York law that placed strict limits on carrying guns outside the home, saying that contradicted the second amendment. The decision has far-reaching implications, particularly in cities that had tried to tackle gun crime by placing restrictions on who can carry them.

Photo: Reuters

New York’s restriction is unconstitutional because it “prevents law-abiding citizens with ordinary needs for self-defense exercise their right to keep and bear armsThomas added.

New York law requires people seeking a license to carry a firearm outside of their homes to demonstrate a “just cause”. California, Hawaii, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey and Rhode Island have similar laws, according to briefs filed in the case.

The ruling could lead to many more people obtaining concealed carry licenses in the state, undermine similar restrictions in other states and jeopardize other types of state and local firearms restrictions across the country by requiring judges to examine them with a more skeptical eye under the Constitution.

The decision represents the most important declaration of the court on gun rights in more than a decade. In 2008, the court for the first time recognized a person’s right to keep guns at home for self-defense in a case involving D.C.and in 2010 applied that right to the states.

Photo: Reuters

The US Senate is set to vote later this Thursday to promote a bipartisan gun control bill they hope it will help curb mass shootings in what could become the first new federal gun law in decades.

Eight states, including New York, empower officials to decide whether people can carry concealed firearms in public, even if they pass criteria like criminal background checks.

The right to bear arms, cherished by many Americans and promised by the country’s founders in the 18th century, is a contentious issue in a nation with high levels of gun violence, including numerous mass shootings. The administration of President Joe Biden sided with New York in the case.

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