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Last Updated on: 27th July 2023, 04:34 pm
Can you believe it, folks? After decades of extremely restrictive gun laws, New York has been forced by the Supreme Court to allow concealed carry permits. As a born-and-raised New Yorker, I have to say this throws me for a loop. Guns on the subway? Guns in Times Square? It just doesn’t sit right.
But rules are rules, so now we’ve got to figure out how this new reality is gonna shake out. And let me tell ya, so far it’s been a whole mess of confusing regulations and legal mumbo jumbo. Trust me, I’m no stranger to crazy NYC laws – we’ve banned everything from big sodas to feeding pigeons. But this concealed carry thing is a real head-scratcher.
Here’s the deal: back in 1911, good ol’ New York passed a law saying regular folks couldn’t get concealed carry permits. You had to show “proper cause,” meaning you were in imminent danger or had a special need to carry a gun. Pretty much nobody who wasn’t a cop, security guard, or jewel thief got approved.
This worked just fine for the NYPD and anti-gun politicians. But some New Yorkers argued it wasn’t constitutional under the Second Amendment. And whaddya know, earlier this year the Supreme Court agreed, striking down New York’s “proper cause” requirement.
Boom – just like that, New York had to let ordinary citizens get concealed carry permits. And Governor Hochul and the state legislature had to scramble to pass new laws regulating how the whole thing would work. Spoiler alert: they’re not too happy about it.
See, politicians in New York are fuming about the Supreme Court decision. So they responded by making the new concealed carry laws as tight as possible.
Now, applicants have to complete 16 hours of classroom training, plus 2 hours of live-fire exercises. They’ve gotta provide four character references and a list of social media accounts. Annual background checks and firearm training are also required to keep your permit. And they’re limiting where you can actually carry the firearm.
The whole process takes months and costs hundreds of bucks in fees. The state police have only approved a couple hundred applications so far, with over 6,000 pending. Suffice to say, they’re not making it easy to exercise your new Second Amendment rights.
Here’s where things get really confusing. New York’s law has a long list of “sensitive places” where concealed carry is prohibited:
Phew – that’s a whole lot of New York real estate where concealed carry is now illegal! And it includes some head-scratchers, like sidewalks, parks, and businesses that sell booze. (So much for a concealed carry happy hour!)
Plus, private businesses can ban guns on their property too. So far, we’re looking at bans by companies like Citigroup, Goldman Sachs, and all the city’s major sports teams. Even Donald Trump’s country club in New Jersey is saying no way to concealed carry.
So good luck figuring out where you can actually carry your firearm in New York. My advice? Leave it at home unless you want to end up in jail.
Now let’s talk tourists. The new laws have special rules for out-of-staters that are just as confusing as for residents.
If you have a concealed carry permit from another state, you can bring your gun to New York. But – and here’s the catch – it has to comply with all of New York’s restrictions. And you can only carry it in New York with written permission from NYPD.
That’s right – even with a valid out-of-state permit, you’ve gotta ask the NYPD for a special tourism carry license. And you can only get permission if you’re traveling “directly to or from” an authorized gun range or hunting area. No detours for Broadway shows or Yankees games!
Otherwise, leave your firearm at home or face felony weapons charges. Not exactly a warm welcome for tourists who are licensed to carry back home.
So now that concealed carry is a reality here, how are New Yorkers feeling about it? Well it’s a mixed bag, to say the least.
Many Big Apple natives just feel uncomfortable around guns. I mean, we pride ourselves on being a safe, low-crime city precisely because of strict gun laws. Plus we’ve got the finest police force in the world. Do regular folks really need to walk around armed?
Some say it’ll make the city safer by deterring criminals if they think potential victims could be packing heat. But others worry about disputes turning deadly over something stupid like a fender bender or barroom argument.
Others point to rural upstate counties that have allowed concealed carry for years without issues. But still, this is the big city we’re talking about. Apples and oranges.
As for me? The jury’s still out. I’d personally never feel the need to carry a concealed firearm here. Then again, I was raised in a very anti-gun culture. I can see why lifelong upstaters or transplants from Texas feel differently.
So for now, I’m cautiously optimistic. NYPD promises very few “restricted” carry permits will be issued in the city itself. And they’ll screen applicants extensively for red flags.
I just hope and pray this Supreme Court ruling doesn’t undo our hard-earned reputation as America’s safest big city. We’ve come so far since the crime waves of the 70s and 80s. It would be a real shame to slide backwards because of a drastic change in concealed carry laws.
But the courts have spoken, and the will of New Yorkers be damned. So hold onto your hats, folks – we’re in for an interesting ride as the new concealed carry era unfolds. All I can say is stay safe and alert out there, and don’t do anything stupid if you see someone else carrying a gun! We’ve gotta keep the peace in this frantic city we call home.
Here’s the key takeaways for New Yorkers and visitors trying to wrap their heads around the state’s new concealed carry laws:
– Permits are now shall-issue instead of may-issue, but the process is still rigorous with fees, training and references required.
– Carry is banned at an extensive list of “sensitive places” like schools, parks, transit and businesses serving alcohol.
– Private property owners can also prohibit firearms on their premises.
– Legal carry requires a very specific purpose like going directly to an authorized gun range. No casual outings or detours.
– Out-of-state visitors need additional written NYPD permission to carry lawfully under very limited circumstances.
– Bottom line: concealed carry permits are easier to obtain, but where and how you can carry is extremely restrictive under the new laws. Proceed with maximum caution and legal advice.
So there you have it, straight from this born-and-raised New Yorker. It’s gonna take a long time to get used to firearms on the streets of NYC, even with the tangle of regulations tying up gun owners. But the courts have ruled, so we’ve gotta adapt. Stay vigilant and stay New York tough, friends. We’ve overcome greater challenges before.
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