S. Supreme Court declined to issue a ruling on New York handgun law, disappointing gun rights advocates who were hoping for a major decision on Second Amendment freedoms.
This action also means that the Supreme Court had not made a major Second Amendment case decision for a decade.
The case tackles on a New York City law, which regulates where licensed handgun owners can take a locked and unloaded handgun – whether a gun owner can take their weapons outside the city to practice at a shooting range of to bring it to their second homes.
The justices’ 6-3 vote say that this case is subject to further debate since the law was repealed, and had the case sent back to the lower court to consider remaining claims from the challengers of the law.
Justice Samuel Alito, Clarence Thomas and Neil Gorsuch dissented, and said that the court should have decided the case and deem the restriction unconstitutional.
On the other hand, Justice Brett Kavanaugh expressed his opinion that while the court is right on its decision to sidestep the current case, the dissenters’ concern about the lower courts disrespecting the Supreme Court’s earlier decision on the Second Amendment also holds water and that the court must “address that issue soon.”
The New York ordinance was adopted in 2001, and it states that residents possessing proper permit could bring a handgun outside their homes to a city shooting range, as long as it is unloaded and in a locked container.
However, three residents challenged this provision and argued that the law violates their Second Amendment rights, as transporting locked and unloaded gun does not pose any significant safety risk.
New York City’s counterargument clears that the ordinance is not a burden on the Second Amendment rights and is a reasonable means to protect public safety.