Justice Thomas Hammers Double Standard on Second Amendment

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Posted: Jun 23, 2022 11:45 AM
Justice Thomas Hammers Double Standard on Second Amendment

Source: AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File

The Supreme Court ruled 6-3 Thursday morning to strike down unconstitutional restrictions on concealed carry and the Second Amendment. 

Writing the majority opinion, Justice Clarence Thomas properly pointed out the double standard many have for the right to keep and bear arms compared to other constitutional rights. 

"The constitutional right to bear arms in public for self-defense is not 'a second-class right, subject to an entirely different body of rules than the other Bill of Rights guarantees,'" Thomas wrote. "The exercise of other constitutional rights does not require individuals to demonstrate to government officers some special need. The Second Amendment right to carry arms in public for self-defense is no different. New York's proper-cause requirement violates the Fourteenth Amendment by preventing law-abiding citizens with ordinary self-defense needs from exercising their right to keep and bear arms in public." 

"Nothing in the Second Amendment's text draws a home/public distinction with respect to the right to keep and bear arms, and the definition of 'bear' naturally encompasses public carry. Moreover, the Second Amendment guarantees an 'individual right to possess and carry weapons in case of confrontation,' and confrontation can surely take place outside the home," Thomas continued. 

The National Rifle Association, which brought the case, is celebrating the victory. 

"This is a monumental win for NRA members and for gun owners across the country. New York's egregious law, which left its residents' self-defense rights to the whim of a government bureaucrat, has been declared unconstitutional and must be changed. New Yorkers will soon be able to defend themselves outside of their homes without first having to prove that they have a sufficient 'need' to exercise their fundamental rights," National Rifle Association Institute for Legislative Action Executive Director Jason Ouimet released in a statement. "This is more than just a great day for New York because this ruling opens the door to rightly change the law in the seven remaining states that still don't recognize the right to carry a firearm for personal protection. The NRA has been at the forefront of this movement for over 30 years and was proud to bring this successful challenge to New York's unconstitutional law." 

The ruling strikes down "may-issue" concealed carry permit restrictions in 19 states.