Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Legslized Marijuana and Gun Ownership in Washington State

The Examiner reports

If Evergreen State voters pass a ballot measure to legalize marijuana, as currently appears likely, that doesn’t mean pot smokers will be legally able to buy or possess firearms, Examiner has learned.

A source with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives in Washington, D.C. Friday confirmed what had been explained in a Sept., 21, 2011 letter from Arthur Herbert, assistant director for enforcement programs and services to firearms retailers regarding gun purchases by medical marijuana patients. This column discussed the issue then, and as the pot vote looms, Washington State gun owners need to know they cannot get stoned and head for the gun range or hunting camp if voters approve Initiative 502.
It's hard to imagine a more irresponsible activity for gun owners than smoking pot, well, other than drinking alcohol, that is. Getting loaded has no place in the life of the responsible gun owner.  The gun-rights folks love to talk about situational awareness and perpetual readiness.  How can getting high possibly fit into that?

What's your opinion?  Please leave a comment.


  1. Marijuana will still be illegal under Federal law, no matter what Washington state chooses to do. Arkansas, either, since we have a medical marijuana ballot measure. Possessing or using the drug is against the rules on that cute little ATF form that we fill out when we buy a gun.

    But in addition to the state of the law, Mikeb, you also forget that a person can be more than just one thing. A gun owner can put away the guns while enjoying alcohol. You're the one who thinks that we walk around waving guns all the time. Is it so hard to imagine that people can make responsible choices, even though those choices don't match what you would choose?

  2. If anyone is a user of "legalized" (meaning that that the Cannabis plant and it's THC are not a schedule 1 substance under that States version of the CSA) or medical marijuana (such as a cancer patient who is illegally using a drug which according to the DEA "has no medically accepted purpose, and holds a high potential for addiction and abuse" which a state has allowed them to use upon prescription by a MD, commits a Felony if they are in possession of any firearm or ammunition. Also, the Justice Department may prosecute anyone in possession of marijuana, regardless of State law. Such an example has occurred fairly recently in California, where the owner of a dispensary was sentenced to 20 years imprisonment (eligible for "supervised release", the Federal parole system in 17 years) in Federal prison even though he Stated that he "was just trying to follow the law". I believe that he was prosecuted due to the fact that he has been a vocal advocate of marijuana abuse (any "use" is abuse under the law) in order to put an end to his seditious lies.

    Enforcement of alcohol laws is more expensive than the "Drug War" because alcohol is legal and widely available. When the Volstead Act was repealed, alcohol abuse rates skyrocked, as it became widely available. The price of marijuana in the U.S. ranges from approximately 1500 to 20,000 USD per kilogram, and even with such a prohibitive street value, there is still widespread abuse.

    1. Your first paragraph is a jumble, but the point that it's trying to make, namely that using marijuana is a crime, is obvious, but trivial. You say that the law denies any medical use for the drug. That's false. There are a number of conditions that marijuana treats well. It also leaves out a pharmaceutical company that charges high prices for "acceptable" medicines. That's what really gnaws at you, people making decisions about their own lives.

      As Prohibition shows, when the government tries to ban a product that the people want, the people get it anyway, despite lots of mishegoss to stop it.