Marijuana Users and Guns

Currently in the US, eight states are now implementing laws that allow adults to use marijuana for recreational purposes. At the same time more than 50% of the US states permit medical marijuana uses. Definitely, this is something that the federal government cannot continue to ignore. Unfortunately, the first change that is likely to be seen from the feds in the start of 2017 will be an addition to the Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) form 4473. The ATF form is a federal application that an individual is required to fill out truthfully in order to buy a gun. A question seeking to establish if you are an illegal user of, or addicted to, cannabis or any other federally controlled substances has already been defined for those living in marijuana-friendly states. Therefore, Los Angeles weed users should be ready as well. Marijuana dealers in the county can only facilitate your purchase of cannabis in Los Angeles. Some of the marijuana-related issues like the possession of guns by weed users must be addressed through the stipulated rules and regulations both at the state and federal level.

Therefore, the possession or use of weed remains illegal under the federal law regardless of the continued wave of decriminalization for medical and recreational uses in various states. This warning is now said to appear on all these applications come January 16, 2017. Such a warning makes it clearly obvious that anyone using marijuana legally as allowed by state laws, regardless of whether you are under doctor’s supervision like any other prescription treatment, is involving in illegal activities based on the federal law.  Such a move was not primarily enhanced through the increasing number of states decriminalizing weed in any form, but because of a court case where the Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit ruled against a medical pot patient from Nevada who alleged that it was an infringement of her rights according to the second amendment. These are some of the areas where marijuana faces some challenges apart from its exclusion from taking part in the financial and banking system.

In the wake of marijuana reforms and changes experienced through the United States, people would think that the government’s stand on weed is outdated. However, that is not the case. The federal government continues to disregard medical marijuana efficacy. The realities of Americans who consume cannabis are not being appreciated despite doing that responsibly, an indication that they could also use guns sensibly. The trade on marijuana began with street sales and purchases from local dispensaries. However today, customers can buy marijuana online. This is one of the things marijuana advocates celebrate. The idea of withdrawing gun possession by marijuana users is however retrogressive.

Apparently, it is somehow illogical for the federal government to decide that cannabis use, which is already proven to be safer than alcohol use– should be the reasons to disallow a person a firearm if they are on the contrary qualified. Ironically, people in possession and use of opiates and anti-depressants have not been banned from buying guns. Again, the consumption of alcohol, which has been found to make people hostile, is also not a reason to disqualify any alcohol user from owning a gun. It is perplexing to realize the stand taken by the federal government on marijuana users versus guns considering the hostility brought about through the consumption of other substances where the users can still own guns. Issues revolving around the cannabis industry continue to occupy the headlines and the pursuit for more reforms continues. In recent times, we have witnessed great developments and ideally, 2016 was a cannabis year. Hopefully, the federal government will feel the pressure and change its stands.

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