Skip to comments.Supreme Court Rejects Medical Marijuana Gun Rights Case
Posted on 01/12/2012 7:02:33 AM PST by marktwain
The question about owning guns while being a medical marijuana patient will not be addressed by the Highest Court in the Land. A gun-rights case that began in a small Oregon town may have finally reached the end of the line.
Cynthia Willis, a resident of the tiny town of Gold Hill, Oregon had been a long-time concealed hand-gun permit owner. In the town of about 1200 residents, Willis, a retired school bus driver, was looking to renew her concealed handgun permit when the sheriff in Jackson County that oversees the permitting found out she was also an Oregon Medical Marijuana Patient. Willis took her battle to court in 2008 over the matter.
Jackson County Sheriff Mike Winters argued that issuing the license would violate federal law, specifically the Gun Control Act of 1968. That act from 44 years ago specifically forbids anyone who uses or is addicted to a controlled substance from having a firearm. The court found that Sheriff Winters had no precedent to deny Ms Willis her renewed gun permit license based on the fact she was a medical marijuana patient. The sheriff took the case to an appellate court, where Willis prevailed again, then Winters took the case all the way to the Oregon Supreme Court. The highest court in Oregon also agreed with the lower courts.
Jackson Countys legal team were arguing that the Gun Control Act of 1968 was on their side, barring people who were considered dangerous or irresponsible and used controlled substances from owning a gun. They also said that a ruling in Cynthia Willis favor would force the sheriff to issue concealed weapons permits to people who admitted to using methamphetamine. They said where there is a conflict between state law and federal law, the federal law should prevail.
But the Oregon Supreme Court ruled that issuing gun permits to medical marijuana patients would not violate the federal Gun Control Act based on Oregons own concealed handgun licensing laws. The federal law in this case, the 1968 gun control act, only gives the states authority to set their own rules for gun ownership and concealed weapons permits, according to the Oregon Supreme Court. After that ruling, the persistant Jackson County Sheriff, Mike Winters had the county legal team prepare to take the case to the US Supreme Court to ask for clarification of the federal law he still believes outlaws guns in the hands of medical marijuana patients.
This week, the US Supreme Court decided not to hear the case, along with a similar gun-permit case from Washington County, Oregon. Since the state ruling, Sheriff Winter has had to provide concealed handgun licenses to Willis and other medical marijuana patients as a result of those court rulings.
NORML Legal Committee attorney Lee Berger, well-known activist lawyer in the state, had the case from the lower courts on up that ladder and said he hopes this message from the Supreme Court will force Winters and other sheriffs to respect the rights of medical marijuana patients. The case has cost the tiny county about $50,000 in legal fees.
...only if the state of Oregon has an officially recognized, government sanctioned, "Medical Methamphetamine" program.
...Oregon doesn't have a state sanctioned "Medical Methamphetamine" program, do they?
But, just for argument, isn’t medical privacy a right of an individual and not to state scrutiny in 2nd Amendment matters?? We could argue the validity of what is considered a prescription drug. And the validity of what entity (government or medical)has final say of the validity of prescription designation?
I’m just curious if on the form for the CCW permit there is required reporting of prescription medication or medical conditions and where opening medical records is required for 2nd Amendment protections?
Not yet. Stand by, remember it is Oregon. Medical MJ laws open the door for future madness. I try to stay away from the left coast.
Not quite “Medical Methamphetamine” but I have a prescription for Ritalin that I take PRN because I refuse to take it every day and I don’t need it every day.
I also have a CCW, the subject of my health, medical conditions or current prescriptions never came up, but according to this Sheriff, I would not be able to have a gun.
“So, the Supreme Court lets stand a ruling that confirms the state powers. “
Wonder how that’s going to affect the recent BATFE letters to gun stores saying that under federal law, medical marijuana permit holders must be denied even the purchase of a gun. Time for some good Californian to take this one up too!
Let’s get our moneys worth from the SCOTUS. Make them work for a change!
There's an enumerated power somewhere that grants them unlimited authority to say what is and isn't a drug and what rights you do and don't have as soon as you ingest one.
Doctors prescribe a number of different amphetamines for a variety of reasons including some types of methamphetamines such as Ritalin. Lots of barbiturates, soporifics, morphine-based drugs and a plethora of mind-altering psychotropic drugs for "emotional/mental" issues too.
The fact is there are a whole lot of legally very doped up people out there.
Somehow the FedMob has exempted itself from any need to respect the privacy of any individual. It has also granted itself the authority to collect information on every last detail of every individual’s life and share it with every FedMob entity but not with any citizen including an individual’s own info.
Sometimes they don’t just collect it, they invent it.
Another thread on this story here but probably less info than this article has.
The current law is a bit hazy on the subject, but just about all lawyers I have spoken to about CCW say that if you are on a medication that can have a mood altering effect, don't carry. If the criminal case won't hurt you, the civil case will.