When the United States Supreme Court refused to hear an appeal of a Second Amendment challenge to Highland Park, Illinois’ ban on semiautomatic assault weapons and large-capacity magazines, it potentially cleared the way for local governments to take local action in the absence of a federal response to our country’s gun violence epidemic.
In not hearing the case, Friedman v. City of Highland Park, local governments interested in taking local action should act quickly and move forward with their own ordinances – quickly because it’s only a matter of time before Friedman is challenged again.
The Highland Park, Illinois, ordinance gives owners of weapons or large capacity magazines 90 days to remove the items from the municipality, which includes turning the weapons into local police.
See the ordinance here.
Coincidentally, Highland Park, NJ, is in the early stages of making a similar move. There, the local Board of Health has passed a resolution that calls to prohibit the sale or transfer of any 50 caliber firearm or 50 caliber cartridge. The Board took this action with the view that assault weapons pose a threat to public health and safety.
The Borough’s governing body has yet to publicly respond or act on the resolution.
While SCOTUS’ decision not to hear Friedman does not necessarily establish precedent, it does, for now, give tacit approval to local gun control laws if states and localities choose to enact them. Let’s enact now.