Lifestyle, Politics

MMJ and Gun Rights: Can a Medical Cannabis Patient Own a Gun?

March 8, 2023 08:00 am ET
MMJ and Gun Rights: Can a Medical Cannabis Patient Own a Gun?

Cannabis patients’ right to own a gun has been in question since cannabis legalization kicked off. Despite the fact that consumers of alcohol, opioids, and recreational cannabis can legally own a gun, lawmakers believe cannabis patients shouldn’t have that same right.

The right to bear arms is a fundamental freedom guaranteed by the Second Amendment that every American can partake in. The only exception is those who have felony charges. Why would lawmakers try to put medical cannabis patients into the same category as felons?

Not everyone agrees that medical cannabis patients shouldn’t have the right to own firearms. In fact, some people in a position of power are beginning to speak out against this discriminatory policy.

U.S. District Judge Considers Weapons Charge Against MMJ Patient Unconstitutional

Recently, in Oklahoma, the question of gun ownership by a medical cannabis patient came into question. The case ended up in federal court, where U.S. District Judge Patrick Wyrick sided in favor of the people calling the charges against a medical cannabis patient unconstitutional. Reuters reported that:

“U.S. District Judge Patrick Wyrick, an appointee of former Republican President Donald Trump in Oklahoma City, on Friday dismissed an indictment against a man charged in August with violating that ban, saying it infringed his right to bear arms under the U.S. Constitution’s Second Amendment.” Judge Wyrick also went on to say, “That while the government can protect the public from dangerous people possessing guns, it could not argue Jared Harrison’s “mere status as a user of marijuana justifies stripping him of his fundamental right to possess a firearm.”

Giffords.org answers the question, “What disqualifies you from owning a gun in the U.S.?” Their answer is, “Under federal law, a person is generally prohibited from acquiring or possessing firearms if, among other things, they have been convicted of certain crimes or become subject to certain court orders related to domestic violence or a serious mental condition.”

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Being a medical cannabis patient doesn’t equate to being a felon, having a serious mental condition, or having committed domestic violence. So why the attack on medical cannabis patients’ Second Amendment rights? With no real reason for this policy, the only plausible answer is that it gives the government more control over the people.

Many states like Oklahoma are standing up for the rights of medical cannabis patients. In August 2023, the Journal Record cited an Oklahoma state law saying, “A medical marijuana patient or caregiver licensee shall not be denied the right to own, purchase or possess a firearm, ammunition, or firearm accessories based solely on his or her status as a medical marijuana patient or caregiver licensee.”

Why Do People Become Medical Cannabis Patients?

People become medical cannabis patients for many different reasons, but one is not to have their constitutional rights stripped from them. The main reason people choose to become medical cannabis patients is for a chance at a higher quality of life—a life with increased mobility, more energy, reduced pain, and more.

Cannabis is known to help relieve the symptoms of chronic pain, fatigue, inflammation, stress, anxiety, depression, arthritis, nausea, loss of appetite, headaches, and more. Individuals living with life-altering medical conditions such as epilepsy, Crohn’s disease, ALS, cancer, and other serious diseases often find great relief through cannabinoid therapies.

Medical cannabis patients aren’t criminals, and it’s high time our elected representatives realize this. People deserve the right to choose cannabis as a medicinal therapy without having to sacrifice fundamental rights. Do you think medical cannabis patients should be unable to own a gun? Or do you think this policy should be left in the past? Let us know in the comments!

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