Poised For A Potential Landmark Ruling

The U.S. Supreme Court is now poised to render a potential landmark ruling on its first Second Amendment case that deals with firearms in more than a decade. Over a decade ago, the Court heard the [District of Columbia v.] Heller decision, and said that you had the fundamental individual right to own a firearm in your home for self-defense. New York State Rifle & Pistol Association (NYSRPA) v. Bruen, to be heard on November 3, 2021 could become the first case in which the high court renders a significant ruling involving firearms. The last Second Amendment case heard by the court was McDonald v. City of Chicago when the court affirmed that the Second Amendment is a fundamental right that also restricts state and local governments from infringing on this right.


The Court did not rule on the constitutionality of the gun ban, deciding instead to reverse and remand the case for additional proceedings. However, the courts decision on the 2nd Amendment makes it clear that such bans are unconstitutional. But, as it held in Heller, the Court reiterated in McDonald that the 2nd Amendment only protects a right to possess a firearm in the home for lawful uses such as self-defense. It stressed that some firearm regulation is constitutionally permissible and the 2nd Amendment right to possess firearms is not unlimited.

This case will answer the question: Whether the Second Amendment allows the government to prohibit ordinary law-abiding citizens from carrying handguns outside the home for self defense. One possibility is that SCOTUS could decide that a discretionary, “may issue” permitting system is altogether unconstitutional, compelling the eight “may issue” states to switch to a “shall issue” system in which permits are automatically granted as long as certain requirements are met. The justices could also completely rewrite the methodology that federal courts use when deciding Second Amendment cases. Given the court’s conservative majority this could be a landmark ruling. 

The final reply brief was filed challenging New York’s restrictive concealed-carry-licensing regime on October 14, 2021. You can read the entire brief here.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *