Gun Rights in the USVI (SCOTUS Ruling)
The Supreme Court recently declared for the first time that the U.S. Constitution protects an individual's right to carry a handgun in public for self-defense, handing a landmark victory to gun rights advocates in a nation deeply divided over how to address firearms violence.
The 6-3 ruling, with the conservative justices in the majority and liberal justices in dissent, struck down New York state's limits on carrying concealed handguns outside the home. The court found that the law, enacted in 1913, violated a person's right to "keep and bear arms" under the U.S. Constitution's Second Amendment.
In the VI, the VIPD does everything in its power to keep guns out of the hands of law abiding citizens.
How will this recent SCOTUS ruling affect the right to carry a hand gun in public for self-defense in the VI.? Any thoughts?
I’m not a gun owner nor a legal expert but my take is the laws in the USVI still stand until they are repealed or over turned. The Supreme Court ruling will of course make rulings easier as an important new precedent now exists. Not everyone realizes/comprehens that the Supreme Court has only one function, to determine if laws passed by the nation, states or territories violate the Constitution. The Supreme Court does not (and should not) make laws, that’s the responsibility of the relevant legislatures, in our case, the Territory and the Federal Government. The local police are charged with enforcing the laws on the books, not to judge the constitutionality of those laws, that’s the domain of the court system.
It will have little or no effect here. The Supreme Court had another ruling in the past year or two, I believe it was regarding COVID-19 mandates that were almost identical to the ones here.
The governor was brief but clear that it has no impact in the VI because the challenge was in another jurisdiction. He basically said that, until the Supreme Court ruled specifically regarding the VI, nothing would change.
Sorry that I don't remember more of the details, but the response was not encouraging.
Maybe we need a local attorney that actually supports the 2nd amendment to file pro Bono. I'm sure there are impacted parties that would join, just not many with deep pockets.
Deep pockets is all too important, unfortunately.