COLUMBIA, S.C. — Does the Supreme Court ruling striking down the New York gun law affect South Carolina?
The US Supreme Court ruled 6-3 to strike down a restrictive gun law in New York that would ultimately allow more people to legally carry guns on the streets. The decision affects approximately a quarter of the US population that live in states that have similar gun legislation. South Carolina is not one of those states.
In August 2021, South Carolina lawmakers passed a new law allowing handgun owners with a concealed weapon permit (CWP) to openly carry their firearm in public. There are some restrictions on open carry – guns are not permitted in gun-free zones such as schools, State House grounds, and businesses that prohibit guns on their premises -- and concealable weapons must be less than 12 inches long.
The New York law had been on that state’s books for over 100 years. The law had stated it was illegal to openly carry a handgun, and a permit was required to carry a concealed handgun. Even then, gunowners had to prove “proper cause” of heightened need to carry a gun, and local courts or police had to approve the permit.
South Carolina Attorney General hailed the Supreme Court's decision, saying it upholds the Second Amendment. His office had field a friend of the court brief in support of the people who brought the lawsuit against New York State.
“The Founding Fathers treasured the right to bear arms for protection and the Court has held the Second Amendment preserves, protects, and defends that right," Wilson said in a statement.