Gun reform advocates reacted with outrage to the supreme court decision overturning a New York state handgun law that placed strict restrictions on carrying concealed firearms outside the home.
The decision could pave the way to allow almost any law-abiding American to carry hidden guns in public places, even as levels of gun deaths rise in the US.
New York governor Kathy Hochul condemned the ruling as “reprehensible”, adding that “it could place millions of New Yorkers in harm’s way”.
“I’m prepared to call the legislature back to deal with this. We are looking at dates,” Hochul said.
Everytown for Gun Safety, a nonprofit that advocates for gun control, put out a statement condemning the decision.
“We’re currently doing a careful reading of the entire decision in NYSRPA v Bruen and will give more detailed analysis later today,” it said on Twitter. “But the fact that the court ruled against New York makes it clear that it chose to put lives at risk and showed indifference to public safety.”
New York’s attorney general, Letitia James, also took to social media to comment, noting that her office is current reviewing the decision and will “continue to do everything in our power to protect New Yorkers from gun violence and preserve our state’s common sense gun laws”.
Many conservatives praised the decision as a protection of the right to bear arms. Lauren Boebert, a Republican representative from Colorado, celebrated with a tweet: “Scotus just struck down New York’s unconstitutional gun law! Glory!”
The supreme court’s opinion comes with the country still reeling from several mass shootings.
Last month, an 18 year old with a legally purchased assault-style rifle allegedly shot and killed 10 people in a racist attack on a supermarket in a majority Black neighborhood in Buffalo, New York.
Less than two weeks later, another 18 year old broke into Robb elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, and shot and killed 19 children and two adults, before being killed by law enforcement.