On January 22nd, 2019, The United States Supreme Court announced it would review its first case concerning the constitutionality of a gun law since their last review nearly ten years ago.
The specific law has been challenged by the New York State Rifle and Pistol Association, and is being Levied against the City of New York. The case concerns the city’s restrictive carry law which determines where a legal gun owner can transport their gun, and how they can carry it.
As it stands, the law prevents people who live in NYC from taking their legally owned gun outside of the city. That means they only have access to seven licensed practice ranges within city limits. If they want to go on vacation, they aren’t allowed to take their gun for either self defense or to use as a sporting activity while they enjoy their time away from home. Most similar laws provide for a means to carry a gun, at the very least unloaded and secured by a locked box and out of reach of the driver and passengers, i.e., in the trunk, but this law precludes such exemptions and has long been considered far too restrictive to remain valid.
The law seems odd for a number of reasons. First, it prevents legal gun owners from using their gun as intended. It’s understandable that guns aren’t allowed to be practiced with in a crowded city area, but it makes no sense to define how a person can’t leave the crowded area to use their gun for legal sport. Other places might declare it illegal to bring a gun in, and regardless of whether you agree with the concept a responsible gun owner can understand why such a decision was made even if it was through faulty logic. Declaring you can’t take your gun elsewhere is utterly ridiculous.
What really makes the New York law unreasonable is how it limits what people can do with their legally owned property. You can’t use it in the city other than for an emergency, but you won’t be prepared for an emergency if you don’t practice. Gun control is a debate that isn’t going to end anytime soon, but this law is a means around the debate by imposing unreasonable restrictions on responsible gun owners.
With the current court members, there is an expectation the law will be overturned. This will not only affect people who live in NYC, but set a precedent for lower courts. If overturned, it will suggest laws which disallow responsible gun transport are not going to pass when challenged on a constitutional basis.
~ Firearm Daily