Oklahoma medical cannabis users are threatened with losing their guns
On Tuesday State Question 788 was passed a vote legalizing medicinal cannabis
Federal law does not allow legal cannabis users to own a gun
ATF recommends people figure out how to dispose of their weapons before receiving their medical cannabis card
Just days after Oklahoma voters passed State Question 788 to allow the use of medical cannabis, gun owners are worried they will be forced to choose between their guns and their medicine.
An open letter from Arthur Herbert, Assistant Director Enforcement Programs, and Services, dated on September 11, 2011, affirms that federal law prohibits anyone who is an “unlawful user of or addicted to any controlled substance” to own, ship or transport a firearm or ammunition. Since cannabis is still illegal on a federal level, it is still unlawful to use.
Question 11.e. on the state or federal form 4473 background check asks:
Are you an unlawful user of, or addicted to, marijuana or any depressant, stimulant, narcotic drug, or any other controlled substance?
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.
There is no exception to federal law at this time that allows legal cannabis users—even in states where medical is recreational—to own a gun. The Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms recommends for residents to make a plan of what to do with their weapons before getting their medical marijuana card.
Cannabis advocates had a significant victory on Tuesday in Oklahoma as State Question 788 passed allowing residents to grow, sell, and use medical cannabis.
Opponents of SQ 788 ranged from law enforcement to faith leaders who were opposed to the proposal not listing any qualifying medical conditions, which means doctors can prescribe medical cannabis for a wide variety of reasons.
Leading the opposition was a group calling themselves “SB 788 Is NOT Medical”. Dr. Kevin Taubman, a member of the group, released the following statement after learning of the defeat.
We are obviously disappointed by the outcome, as we believe 788 is simply too broadly written to be considered a legitimate medical marijuana program. However, we respect the will of the voters and our member groups look forward to working with the Legislature and the Health Department to advance common-sense regulations that benefit patients while protecting businesses and communities.
Advocacy groups in favor of SQ 788 reported some issues at polling sites, mainly that people were not given a second ballot with SQ 788 on it unless it was requested. There were no details on which polling sites this occurred.