A day after the Supreme Court made it easier for citizens to carry guns, the US Congress is backtracking. He tightened the gun laws again – to protect the population.
For the first time in decades, the US Congress passed a bipartisan law to improve protection against firearms. The Democrat-led House of Representatives passed the law by a vote of 234 to 193 on Friday. It now has to be signed by US President Joe Biden.
The US Senate had previously approved it. Experts rate the tightening of gun laws as the most significant at the federal level since the mid-1990s – although it was a non-partisan minimum compromise that critics criticized as completely inadequate.
About a month ago, 19 children and two teachers were shot dead in a massacre at a Texas elementary school. The act had sparked horror across the country. A group of Democrats and Republicans then worked on a compromise for stricter gun laws.
Biden wants to protect Americans
Biden stressed that “after 28 years of deadlock” on gun laws, representatives of both parties have now acted to counter “the plague of gun violence”. “The bipartisan law will help protect Americans. Children in schools and communities will be safer because of it.” Earlier, Democrat Biden called the law insufficient but a step in the right direction. The law does not include the ban on assault rifles demanded by Biden and other Democrats.
Among other things, the new law provides for more intensive screening of gun buyers who are under 21 years old. It is also about expanding state laws that make it possible to confiscate weapons from potentially dangerous people. Illegal arms trafficking should be punishable at the federal level. In addition, billions of US dollars are to be invested in mental health care and anti-violence programs. Funds are also earmarked for school security.
Many Republicans argue that the rise in gun attacks is due to a rise in mental illness, not the ready availability of guns.
Carrying firearms is a fundamental right in the United States
Amid the debate over gun violence, the country’s Supreme Court expanded the right to carry guns in public on Thursday. The Supreme Court overturned a more than 100-year-old New York state statute that requires you to have valid reason to obtain a license to carry a handgun concealed outside the home. Two men complained about it. Similar laws exist in states like California, New Jersey or Massachusetts. In other parts of the USA, on the other hand, there are hardly any restrictions.
“We are not aware of any other constitutional right that individuals may only exercise if they can demonstrate a special need to the authorities,” the verdict said. The court’s decision was six to three – the three judges believed to be liberal did not join the conservative majority.