In a 7-4 ruling, the notoriously left-leaning court decided that Hawaii’s open carry ban is lawful.
The majority decision was written by Judge Jay Bybee, who was appointed by former president George W. Bush.
“The government may regulate, and even prohibit, in public places—including government buildings, churches, schools, and markets—the open carrying of small arms capable of being concealed, whether they are carried concealed or openly,” Bybee wrote.
“We can find no general right to carry arms into the public square for self-defense,” he added, arguing that the Second Amendment applies only to the “defense of hearth and home.”
According to Judge Diarmuid O’Scannlain, a dissenting member of the 9th Circuit panel who was appointed by former president Ronald Reagan, “This holding is as unprecedented as it is extreme.”
Hawaii currently requires that citizens complete an application, proving that they have both “urgency” and “need” before they are permitted to carry a gun outside of the home.
However, the state denied all private citizens who applied for carry licenses in 2020, claiming that they failed to meet its subjective standard.
The lawsuit was brought by George Young, a Hawaii resident whose application was rejected because he “relied upon his general desire to carry a firearm for self-defense,” rather than some more urgent need.
Alan Beck, Young’s lawyer, said that he will ask the US Supreme Court to take up the case.
Many of the 9th Circuit’s radical interpretations of the Constitution have ultimately been reversed by the Supreme Court.
Yet, the ruling comes on the heels of Democrat calls for greater gun control, as the newly-empowered Left looks to limit the ability for citizens to defend their families and property.
Democrats also have threatened to pack the court if it stands in the way of their agenda.