Honolulu PD Rethinking Gun Confiscation
It is a topic of extreme controversy, should Medical Marijuana users be allowed to own a firearm?
Classified as a schedule 1 narcotic by the DEA and FDA, Marijuana is illegal to use on the Federal level, despite States that have legalized Medical Marijuana. By this definition alone, Medical Marijuana users “technically” cant pass the Federal form 4473 Criminal background check.
“On November 29 Breitbart News reported that the HPD had sent letters to about 30 medical marijuana cardholders ordering them to surrender their guns within 30 days. KITV pointed out that the letters informed cardholders to “surrender weapons, permits, and ammunition to HPD or to transfer ownership.”
The Honolulu Star reported that police have been sending letters throughout the year and the one dated November 13 was signed by HPD chief Susan Ballard. It informed cardholders that their “medical marijuana use disqualifies [them] from ownership of firearms and ammunition.”
On August 31, 2016; the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit upheld a ban on gun ownership for medical marijuana users as constitutional.
With the increase in legalization of Medical Cannabis and cannabis based therapies across the nation, the lines between what your Doctor prescribes and what the ATF deems legal carry and ownership of a firearm become quite askew.
Anyone who has purchased a legal firearm will tell you, that on the form 4473, there is a section on drug use. Answering Yes to it, is an immediate denial of sale and the firearm transaction is then null and void.
In order to legally purchase a firearm in the United States, an individual must complete a Firearms Transaction Record (form 4473). Question 11(e) on this form asks:
“Are you an unlawful user of, or addicted to, marijuana or any depressant, stimulant, narcotic drug, or any other controlled substance?”
Even though Medical Cannabis is being legalized, the ATF, DEA, FDA and the Federal Government still classify Marijuana as a Schedule 1 narcotic. Thus, if you have a Medical Marijuana (MM) card, you are not allowed to own a firearm.
The Federal government designates cannabis, it’s seeds, and derivatives as a Schedule I controlled substance.
The Controlled Substances Act (CSA) states that chemicals of this class and designation have “no accepted medicinal use” and can’t be used safely even under the supervision of a physician.
According to VenicCare.com, in October 2016, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives amended the Form 4473 to add the following to Question 11(e):
Warning: The use or possession of marijuana remains unlawful under Federal law regardless of whether it has been legalized or decriminalized for medicinal or recreational purposes in the state where you reside.
Last year, the 9th Federal Circuit Court has upheld the ATF’s interpretation on possession of a medical marijuana card as “intermediate proof” that you have no right to possess, transfer or purchase firearms and ammunition.
The 9th Circuit in its 3-0 decision said Congress reasonably concluded that marijuana and other drug use “raises the risk of irrational or unpredictable behavior with which gun use should not be associated.”
Basically stating that even though it has been legalized, if you opt for a cannabis based therapy to treat an ailment that afflicts you, you have given up your Right to legally own a firearm.
There are some states that allow both a CCW and a MM permit to coexist with a legal firearm owner.
Regarding firearms, California requires a Firearms Safety Certificate, which allows the use of any firearm.
In Connecticut, you can also purchase or possess any firearm with a license. In Connecticut, it is called a Permit to Purchase. You are also allowed up to 2.5 ounces of medicinal marijuana at a time.
In Hawaii, you need a Permit to Purchase. This license is good for all firearms.
Under current laws, you are also allowed up to four ounces of weed. You can grow as many as seven plants.
Illinois requires a License to Own to purchase or possess any firearm.
And if you have a medical marijuana card, you are allowed 2.5 ounces of usable weed during a 14-day period.
Maryland also allows up to a 30-day supply of medical marijuana. The amount you’re allowed to have is set by whoever prescribed it.
Massachusetts requires a License to Carry for guns. But for handguns, you also need a Permit to Purchase.
For medicinal marijuana, you are allowed up to 10 ounces for a 60-day period of use.
Michigan requires a Purchase to Permit for handguns only. It is only valid for 30 days. Short-barreled rifles, short-barreled shotguns, AOWs, and automatic weapons are allowed if you follow federal laws.
For medical marijuana, you are allowed up to 2.5 ounces at a time and 12 plants.
New Jersey requires a Permit to Purchase for all guns. However, handgun permits only last 90 days.
As for cannabis, you are allowed up to two ounces of weed.
New York requires a License to Own for handguns only.
Qualifying medical marijuana patients are also allowed a 30-day supply of non-smokable medical marijuana. That includes things like edibles, CBD oils, and other similar products.
Rhode Island requires a Permit to Purchase. This is for handguns only.
You are allowed to have as much as 2.5 ounces of cannabis and 12 plants.
What about CBD Oil?
Even though it has less than .03% THC and is made from industrial hemp, CBD Oil is still not legal in all 50 states. Once again, the decision of whether you can legally own and carry a firearm while taking a non euphoria inducing supplement that is sold over the counter, depends on the state in which you live.
In the early 2000s, the DEA tried to ban hemp food products due to their trace THC content. In the 2004 case, Hemp Industries Association v. DEA, the court found that Congress banned “marihuana” (the feds still maintain the spelling used in the original Marihuana Tax Act of 1937) and “synthetic THC.” Therefore, DEA can ban all synthetic THC, but they can only ban natural THC if it is within or extracted from “marihuana,” as it is defined in the law according to HighTimes.com.