The Threat the Supreme Court Now Poses to the Nation’s Gun Control Laws

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio (AP Photo/Craig Ruttle)

More media types are waking up to the threat posed to gun control laws across the US by New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v New York City. And they don’t like what they see.

(The Supreme Court) has scheduled the New York City case for next fall. The city’s rules generally block gun owners with possession licenses from transporting their guns outside the home, except to one of seven shooting ranges inside city limits. The guns must be unloaded and locked up, with ammunition carried separately.

Gun owners who sought to take their firearms to second homes or shooting ranges outside the city challenged the rules in federal court, but they were upheld last year by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.

Sensing a losing hand at the Supreme Court, gun control groups urged the city to change its rules in hopes a quick surrender would prompt the justices to drop the case. The city’s police department held a public hearing last week on proposed changes that would allow travel outside the city. A decision is expected within weeks.

But gun rights groups argued in court papers this month that the justices should not dismiss the case even if the restrictions are lifted. Instead, they urged an expansion of Second Amendment rights.

“The historical understanding of the right to keep and bear arms removes any remaining doubt that it extends outside the home,” the NRA said.

“The primary need for self defense, unquestionably protected by the Second and Fourteenth Amendments, is typically not in the home but outside of the home,” attorneys general from 24 Republican-led states said. They noted that only about one in five violent crimes occurs at home.

The New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, which brought the case against the city, accused it of a “nakedly transparent effort to evade this court’s review” by moving to ease the restrictions. The Cato Institute warned that the rules could be changed “just long enough for the case to be dismissed.”

But Winkler notes the challengers only sought an injunction to stop New York’s law from being enforced. If it’s repealed, he says, “the case should be moot, because the challengers will have effectively won.”

– Richard Wolf in NRA, gun rights groups using New York City rules to seek expansion of Second Amendment in Supreme Court

comments

  1. avatar No one of consequence says:

    ‘If it’s repealed, he says, “the case should be moot, because the challengers will have effectively won.”’

    Nope. Slap the city, and the 2nd Circuit, down hard with a ruling that makes it hard to do this sort of nonsense in the first place. Plus award all court costs to the plaintiffs.

    1. avatar Felix says:

      The general hope (and fear!) that I have seen is the Supremes will finally rule that this enumerated right is no longer a second class right and deserves the same strict scrutiny that freedom of speech gets. That simple act would put the kibosh on thousands of gun control laws. It wouldn’t gut the NFA or GCA or gun-free school zones right away, if ever; but it would eliminate magazine capacity bans, assault weapon bans, may issue regimes, exorbitant carry permit fees, and other such low-hanging fruit within a few years (they’d all take court cases). Then the real work could begin.

      Of course, Roberts is such a stooge that it’s entirely possible he will either force a very narrow decision and ignore the strict scrutiny, or side with the proggies in leaving the second amendment as a second class enumerated right.

      1. avatar Nanashi says:

        Ginsberg could still pass before this. Has she been seen in public since the surgery?

        1. avatar HuntingtonGuy says:

          RBG reaching room temperature is probably on the horizon and it will be a gift to America when she does. I would much rather she avoid going horizontal until this case is decided though.
          I don’t trust Roberts, not even a little bit. If we don’t have RBG there is a chance that this case ties or worse, it gets put off entirely.
          RBG is a known entity,Roberts is a wild card I don’t want to have to entrust with keeping this decision on the right side of right.

        2. avatar supergun says:

          Don’t know if she is still alive

        3. avatar TFred says:

          Ginsburg will never retire. Never. She sees herself as the savior of the world, which gives her the determination to live forever, and the discipline to stay in the best physical health possible. She won’t live forever, of course, but she’s already the 6th oldest, and she’s only 6 years away from being the oldest justice to ever serve. She will surpass that easily.

        4. avatar TFred says:

          Oops, made a mistake, looked at an outdated webpage. Ginsburg is just a tad over 4.5 years away from being the oldest Supreme Court Justice. I have no doubt she’ll surpass it.

      2. avatar Stateisevil says:

        Dude, if you think this case is going to get rid of mag bans, bullet buttons, may issue and the like, you got another thing coming. I understand the instinct to get excited, but the truth is no defense in the court system. Even if there is a snow ball effect after this ruling, that snowball will be moving about 1 mph. Legislatures can pass more laws much much faster than even a friendly court system could strike them down. We have a very unfriendly court system. Also, what about enforcement. New Jersey still doesn’t follow FOPA, for example. History says the excitement over the possibility of court relief is misplaced.

        1. avatar Kyle says:

          Strict scrutiny will make those cases much harder. Ask the pro-life crowd.

          Any law that goes anti-gun will get an emergency stay until its heard by higher and higher courts. Oh the states will not give up, why should they, it aint their money, but they’ll lose alot.

        2. avatar J Gibbons says:

          The court ought to apply the same principles to this as it did to wipe out state bans on same sex marriages several years ago. It could immediately nullify just about any non-federal gun control law as well as grant reciprocity.

        3. avatar TFred says:

          Suggest you research the three levels of scrutiny in law. If SCOTUS finally rules that the Second Amendment deserves strict scrutiny, it is quite literally a re-write of all the rules used in all prior court cases.

    2. avatar MICHAEL A CROGNALE says:

      My biggest fear is that SCOTUS actually rules the way we all want and the states like NY ignore it. Recall that Andrew Jackson once said about a ruling he didn’t like, “Let them enforce it”. There will be no mechanism for immediate compliance.

      1. avatar Kyle says:

        Well, we’ve been heading headlong towards constitutional crisis for years. The real kind, not just the CNN version. If that’s the issue that brings it to a head, so be it. As I said, I think that we’ve become so tribal that its just not avoidable anymore

      2. avatar John in Ohio says:

        That’s a good point. I do, however, agree with Kyle that it’s better that this stuff come to a head now and it get dealt with swiftly. I think a lukewarm ruling would be the absolute worst case scenario. The best cases would be for the courts to clarify for all if government now considers us slaves or a free people.

    3. avatar frank speak says:

      a ridiculous restriction that never could of stood up to judicial review….all it took was someone to challenge it

  2. avatar Napresto says:

    What is best in life? To crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentation of their women.

    Failing that, a SCOTUS win that makes it harder for stupid jerks to infringe my rights…

    1. avatar JW says:

      Nice! Barbarians are one reason I have a gun. I prefer not to be lamented. 🙂

  3. avatar Mad Max says:

    I’m hoping for a SCOTUS ruling for strict scrutiny in this case. I hope it does not become moot.

    Of course, if New York State repeals the SAFE act and passes Constitutional carry in its place, that would be good.

  4. avatar Gov. William J Le Petomane says:

    ‘Instead, they urged an expansion of Second Amendment rights.’

    It’s a pretty sad state when allowing law abiding citizens to transport, unloaded and in locked cases, their arms outside of a city is considered an expansion of the right to keep and bear arms in which the Constitution unambiguously says ‘Shall not be infringed’.

    1. avatar LarryinTX says:

      Excellent point! How can you “expand” a right beyond “shall not be infringed”?

  5. avatar Mad says:

    It’s going to be interesting with kavanugh and Roberts I don’t know

  6. avatar Thomas Pilon says:

    TTAG, you have lost your way. You are no longer about guns, but now gun politics. And your Everyday Carry column has become as tired as a ho on payday. How about actually writing about guns again?

    1. avatar Gov. William J Le Petomane says:

      Uh, shut your pie hole.

      1. avatar ‘liljoe says:

        Respectfully,

        TTAG accepts articles, write a review on a gun you own, even if they have a review you can present your perspective.

        Rather than curse the darkness, light a candle so that others can follow your light.

        1. avatar Gov. William J Le Petomane says:

          Or just don’t click. It’s pretty damn stupid IMHO to bitch about more content just because some of it’s not something you’re interested in reading. I don’t click on probably 60% of TTAG articles but I’m not going to bitch about it. Got another review on a plastic 9mm I’ll never have even the slightest interest in buying? Yawn. Next. A review of a $600 holographic sight I’ll never buy? Ditto…

        2. avatar jwm says:

          It’s been a long time since I read anything ar15 related.

        3. avatar tsbhoa.p.jr says:

          jwm, just, thank you.

      2. avatar rosignol says:

        Eenh, he’s got a point about Everyday Carry. How many times have the commentariat here posted out repeats? A certain ‘bronzed’ glock comes to mind, and I recall an airsoft G18.

        It is not high-quality content.

    2. avatar Jim Bullock says:

      tl; dr: Gun law and politics has been in the charter from day 1. Still says so, last I looked. If you want to shut down a people doing stuff that’s not to your preference, well, that’s what the law n similar discussions are about…

      And the long form….
      TTAG had, and has the personal, legal n similar aspects of arms right in the charter. Reviews n gear pieces are also different from the other venues. More contextual. More grounded in history, n use.

      I don’t know if there is a category in media studies, but there’s a sub-genere of salon / water-cooler for highly-engaged avocationists. Indeed, that has been most of new development n advancing technique, most of the time. Electric drag racers were trading techniques n competing long before Tesla was a squint in either of Musk’s eyes. In modern shooting, 3-gun, long distance target, black powder hunting come to mind.

      People go pretty deep into odd-looking corners when they’re involved n engaged. Engaged people’s take on the issue du jour might not be Ben Rodes’ fodder chummed into the echosphere of 26 year olds who literally know nothing. His words. (Keeping the conversation stupid is politics, it seems.)

      That’s propaganda, and manufacruring consent, which some folks find an interesting, necessary corner about guns. Guns in citizens’ hands, or not, is a big frakking deal – to quote another luminary.

      I do wonder if “shut up and talk about gear” is just a more sophisticated troll-attempt, what when one entire U S party is running on “No guns for you!”, and The District Capitol of New York is declaring what you can’t do with your stuff, outside their jurisdiction.

    3. avatar Rocketman says:

      Thomas, much like a neutered dog, your not getting it. The authoritarians (progressives, communists, “liberals” and fascists) are in the process of weaponizing EVERYTHING. Look at what they’ve done to the NFL, Star Trek, Star Wars and so on. They have made every subject, every thought political. If we don’t fight them on EVERY front then we are going to lose. Then your opinion that we are spending to much time not talking about guns will be mute, because the USA civilian population won’t have any guns.

      1. avatar Rick Hess says:

        The term you’re looking for is “moot”. Getting something done while remaining silent is “mute”.

    4. avatar Geoff "I'm getting too old for this shit" PR says:

      “TTAG, you have lost your way. You are no longer about guns,…”

      Gun politics and gun culture are a part of TTAG…

    5. avatar jbob says:

      I agree with the Gov. shut your pie hole. Guns and politics are inevitably linked in our society thanks to the anti-gun left. And this site has always been as focused on politics if not more so than reviews.

    6. avatar Pg2 says:

      You might not be interested in politics, but politics is/are interested in you…..

      1. avatar frank speak says:

        there’s a war going on…even though some are…or choose to be…. oblivious….TTAG is doing their best to inform and remain relevant…

    7. avatar Ollie says:

      Go to The Firearms Blog for that sort of content.
      Or Forgotten Weapons if you like older stuff.
      Or one of the many other firearms sites.
      This IS a political site.

    8. avatar John in Ohio says:

      “You are no longer about guns, but now gun politics.”

      Tyranny makes the two inseparable.

    9. avatar David Deplorable says:

      All politics?

      How is that “firearms not politics” working for TFB? Getting their social media pages pulled. Without engagement in politics, you won’t have any guns.

      While you may have no interest in politics, rest assured that politicians surely have an interest in you.

    10. avatar HellBilly says:

      TTAG has always been political, Thomas.

    11. avatar Kyle says:

      Gun politics IS ‘guns’. If politics runs the wrong way, the only gun news you’ll get on TTAG is the newest weapons that you’ll never see unless your in one of the worlds military

    12. avatar strych9 says:

      Ignore the gun politics long enough and if there are any gun reviews at all they’ll be about guns you aren’t allowed to own.

      Oooo… a new match grade trigger for a rifle you’ll never be allowed to own. How cool!

  7. avatar Dan says:

    Without talking about politics you will soon not have your guns! Damn Fudd!

    1. avatar Thomas Pilon says:

      I agree, but this site used to be about guns and I would like to see it return to that. There are plenty of other sites that cover gun politics.

      1. avatar Dude says:

        Keeping us informed about politics is great, but how about more articles on new models, reviews, etc? It seems like there hasn’t been much of that lately. You have to go somewhere else to get that.

      2. avatar Ralph says:

        “this site used to be about guns”

        And when was that, exactly?

        1. avatar Geoff "I'm getting too old for this shit" PR says:

          “And when was that, exactly?”

          When Nick Leghorn was test editor?

          {Running away, *fast*}…

        2. avatar Geoff "I'm getting too old for this shit" PR says:

          Nothing personal, Jeremy S.

          (Who spoke in class, today…)

      3. avatar Manse Jolly says:

        And there are plenty of sites that only talk about guns and hardware if that is your wish.

        https://www.thefirearmblog.com/blog/

        Politics are linked with guns/firearms. I wish it were not so.

        Another good thing about TTAG is the search feature that I recently used to find all reviews of XS pistol sights. The TTAG archive is squared away.

        1. avatar Geoff "I'm getting too old for this shit" PR says:

          “Politics are linked with guns/firearms. I wish it were not so.”

          Guns and politics are welded to each other in America, like nothing else. It both binds us together, and drives us apart, at the same time.

          And that intrinsic volatility make up a large part of the fabric of America…

        2. avatar John in Ohio says:

          Exactly, Geoff “I’m getting too old for this shit” PR. The very Second Amendment to the Constitution of the United States proves your point. Arms and politics had been interwoven since before the founding of the nation. It’s kind of difficult to have a proper revolution without weapons.

        3. avatar Geoff "I'm getting too old for this shit" PR says:

          “It’s kind of difficult to have a proper revolution without weapons.”

          John, if all we had (read, ‘allowed’) were scoped single-shot bolt-action rifles (grandpa’s hunting rifle), we could take this country back.

          It wouldn’t be easy, but we *could* do it…

      4. avatar Vlad Tepes says:

        I see nothing wrong with disusing politics but you are correct in mentioning TTag has really slacked off on discussing new firearms but here is a new idea. How about some articles discussing the classic firearms of yesteryear. You know back when they made “real quality forged steel guns.

        1. avatar Hush says:

          Impossible to separate guns from politics these days. Not the fault of the POG but rather the fault of the media and politicians who for the most part don’t know much about that which they abhor. Perhaps Thomas has not grasp the seriousness of the politics or is a FUDD!

      5. avatar LarryinTX says:

        Thomas, the home page allows you to select gun reviews or whatever, then you won’t be bothered by needing to think.

  8. avatar Dave says:

    Question for NY’ers: What would you see as ways to bring a BoR culture back to NYC (assuming it had one in the distant past)?

    1. avatar Geoff "I'm getting too old for this shit" PR says:

      There’s the problem. NYC has only had a faint gun culture, ever since that fascist Sullivan passed his law.

      But it most certainly can come back, and in a *massive* way, if shall-issue comes to NYC.

      Think about all the Hollywood movies with guns in them set in NYC. Shoulder holsters and Mexican carry will make a resurgence…

      1. avatar John in Ohio says:

        The average Mexican is a bit too bulky for me to carry. However, I avoid NYC all together so it’s a non-issue in my case.

        1. avatar tsbhoa.p.jr says:

          imagine with a new york reload…

    2. avatar Chier says:

      Load 90% of the residents on garbage scows and dump them into the Atlantic Ocean, about 50 miles offshore.

      1. avatar Big E says:

        This is the answer! Well said.

      2. avatar John in Ohio says:

        That’s a waste of a good ocean. Perhaps, outer-space or the Sun?

        1. avatar Jeffro says:

          Fish gotta eat, same as worms………

        2. avatar John in Ohio says:

          True. Good Josey Wales paraphrase.

  9. avatar Imayeti says:

    A definitive decision and be done with it. PLEASE!
    Else we’re gonna see little crappy laws over and over.

    1. avatar Geoff "I'm getting too old for this shit" PR says:

      It can’t be ‘pure’ strict scrutiny, as much as we would like it. So the problem will be for the Leftists to take a light-year from an inch of daylight they will be given…

      1. avatar Rick Hess says:

        Why not?

  10. avatar NORDNEG says:

    The Supreme Court needs to step in and set some strict boundaries around the 2-A to keep places like N Y & California from constantly trying to pass laws against the 2-A,,, while we have constitutionalists in the majority of the court…getter done… M A G A…🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸

    1. avatar neiowa says:

      Perhaps something like “shall not be infringed”?

      1. avatar John in Ohio says:

        From your mouth to G-d’s ear. If only…

  11. avatar Bierce Ambrose says:

    Well, I see that the apparatchaks have advanced from false-flag ad homenim fodder to concern-trolling “don’t talk about that stuff” about the important stuff.

    It must be working or they wouldn’t be trying to shut it down.

  12. avatar B.D. says:

    New York care about 2A Rights… Lol… Yea, right.

    History tells me otherwise, and it won’t start changing there anymore than it would in CA.

  13. avatar Timothy Toroian says:

    Boycott NYC for so stupid as to re-elect DeBlasio.

  14. avatar possum, destroyer of arachnids says:

    I’ve got s gunm, I’m going to keep my gunm, no matter what black tones ssy

  15. avatar John in Ohio says:

    Will Lucy let Charlie Brown kick that football this time? Perhaps if he really, really, really believes enough, she will.

    I’m sure some of us are just brimming with anticipation; waiting for that special moment.

    1. avatar Geoff "I'm getting too old for this shit" PR says:

      “I’m sure some of us are just brimming with anticipation; waiting for that special moment.”

      Well, John, it paid off when the ‘Heller’ decision dropped…

      1. avatar John in Ohio says:

        The Heller decision supported infringement. It’ll be a mighty long time before that stain ever comes out.

    2. avatar Dani in WA says:

      Maybe he should try kicking Lucy instead…

  16. avatar former water walker says:

    Not holding my breath for the Supremes…ya’know Andy Jackson stated “where are your troops?” to back up their pro Cherokee decision. We need teeth-sharp massive canines. Punish the he!! out of states like NY,California or ILLinois. Oh and I come to TTAG mainly for politics. I see guns&gear day and night on FB and YouTube…everyday carry is lame.

  17. avatar Vlad Tepes says:

    While everyone is drooling over the Conservative Supreme Court you can be rest assured they will hear few if any gun rights cases. They will do historically as they have always done and that is let the lower anti-gun court rulings stand and let the lower courts take the heat as they know every pro-gun ruling reduces their power over the people. John Acton once said “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely” and I might add in 2019 “This pertains to both Liberals and Conservatives in their lust for absolute power”. The corrupt Supreme Court is the absolute power of the land and they are damn sure not going to threaten it or lessen their power with any pro-gun rulings.

  18. avatar Ark says:

    It’s amazing how this has pulled all the people out of the woodwork to announce that they believe you should be thrown in prison for transporting your legal gun to a shooting range outside of NYC.

    All grabbers want to take all of your guns and all of your gun rights, and everything else they say is a lie.

  19. avatar Alan says:

    New York States infamous Sullivan Law, along with the “special applications” thereof applicable to New York City and environs should long since have ended up in the legislative trash can. That this ending has not yet been obtained is about the most critical and appropriate possible observation available, in my view. Shame on the courts, the state legislature too.

    In case anyone is interested, I was born and raised in N.Y.C., lived there for a number of years, departing that vale of tears in 1967. A brief reading of history will explain my departure, should anyone be interested.

    1. avatar Mark N. says:

      NYC controls just about enough votes to assure that that never happens. Just like Chicago. IN California it isn’t even a contest–the anti-gunner Democrats have a 2/3 supermajority that allows them to ignore any opposition.

      1. avatar UpInArms says:

        ” should long since have ended up in the legislative trash can ”

        This is why we need a constitutional amendment that puts an automatic sunset clause on EVERY law that gets passed. If nothing else, it would keep legislators so busy trying to decide which laws to renew they won’t have time to make any fresh mischief.

      2. avatar Alan says:

        Many years ago, late 1960’s, I lived in California for a couple of years. I sometimes wonder as to what happened.

  20. avatar Chris Morton says:

    This is how we got McDonald. DICK Daley didn’t know when to fold until it was too late.

    I’m old enough to remember the same kind of whining from Dixiecrats about the death of Jim Crow.

    Same party, different day, same hatred of liberty.

  21. avatar WhiteDevil says:

    “The city’s police department,” is all I needed to see when I hear people screech about how the police would never go along with a forced confiscation. Like the NZ cops, right?

    1. avatar LarryinTX says:

      Cops, Nat’l Guard, Park Rangers, any of those will go along just fine as long as it doesn’t cost them anything. But when the order goes out to start on 1st Street and tear apart every house to confiscate every gun, they’ll get to about the third house and lose 2 or 3 cops in a firefight, and that’ll be enough tor today. The next day, once everybody knows they’re coming, the whole squad will die before they reach the first door, after which anyone who wants it done will be invited to go do it himself, and that’s the end of that. I doubt anyone will have the conviction to then go forward to hunt down those who directed the confiscations, but we can hope. And their families.

  22. avatar David Walters says:

    Even her on this site there’s a remarkable amount of discussion of how, why, where and if the government will break heavy on gun owners and, if so, how we can 1) prevent it and 2) defy it.

    I’m an old guy…67 years old. I’m not going to seed the next generation with my insights. That “thang” don’t work anymore. So, I don’t feel like I have to defend the next generation’s gun rights. If they’re not up to it I could Give a Shirt. At least a half dozen times in my life my ability to produce a gun in a pinch has been the difference between life and death for either me of my family members.

    Hey, an old fart like me’s been in a lot of tough situations simply because of age. And, I’m alive still because of what I believe.

    It’s MY gun rights that I’ve enjoyed since birth that I’m interested in defending. The ignorant youngsters who’ve never faced a real armed emergency can go screw themselves out of their rights if they like.

    And, here’s the most important statement in this already too long post…if the government wants to take my guns not only will I die but some of them will too.

    That will never happen in my lifetime, perhaps, even if that means that my elderly years are abruptly terminated. It’s the cold, dead hands sort of stuff.

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