On Wednesday, August 31st 2016 millions and millions of Americans living in our nine western states lost their 2nd Amendment rights… perhaps permanently… and without any fanfare and almost no media coverage. In these states millions of Americans may now be added to a “list” which the federal government maintains without any oversight and very little redress – legally and without their knowledge. This “list” is blindly fed by bureaucrats from states solidly in the grip of Liberalism – states like Hawaii, California and Washington.
The decision to suspend the 2nd Amendment for these many millions of Americans was made by three people – the judges that sit on the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals which has jurisdiction over our nine western states and is THE FINAL WORD for legal appeals short of the U.S. Supreme Court in California, Arizona, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, Hawaii, Alaska, Idaho and Montana… about 20% of all Americans.
What was this outrageous legal decision you ask? Effective September 1st of this year the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that medical marijuana users cannot buy guns (http://fortune.com/2016/09/01/medical-marijuana-gun/.) They ruled 3-0 on Wednesday that a ban preventing medical marijuana card holders from purchasing firearms is NOT a violation of the 2nd Amendment!
“The United States courts of appeals are considered among the most powerful and influential courts in the United States. Because of their ability to set legal precedent in regions that cover millions of Americans, the United States courts of appeals have strong policy influence on U.S. law. Moreover, because the U.S. Supreme Court chooses to review less than 1% of the more than 10,000 cases filed with it annually, the United States courts of appeals serve as the final arbiter on most federal cases. The Ninth Circuit in particular is very influential, covering 20% of the American population (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_courts_of_appeals.)”
Here’s how it went down…
“A lawsuit was filed in 2011 by Nevada resident S. Rowan Wilson after she tried to purchase a gun for self-defense and was denied based on a federal ban on the sale of guns to users of illegal drugs. Though marijuana has been legalized in some places on a state-by-state basis, it remains illegal under federal law. The court maintained that drug use “raises the risk of irrational or unpredictable behavior with which gun use should not be associated.” Wilson claimed that she doesn’t actually use marijuana, she simply obtained a card to show her support for its legalization. The appeals court agreed with guidelines from the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives that firearms sellers should assume that medical marijuana card holders use the drug (http://fortune.com/2016/09/01/medical-marijuana-gun.)”
Wilson fought for her 2nd Amendment rights for FOUR YEARS and spent who knows how much money… and she LOST!
Wilson and her attorney plan to appeal this ruling of course but the reality is that the ONLY appeal allowed is to the U.S. Supreme Court who choose to review LESS than 1% annually of the cases brought to them from the U.S. Court of Appeals network.
“Ooooohhh”, you say to yourself, “That’s OK. I don’t smoke pot so I have nothing to worry about.” Maybe you’re a solid, pro-law enforcement Conservative that’s in total agreement with the concept of keeping firearms out of the hands of “drug users.” And as far as poor Ms. Wilson goes… well if she doesn’t really smoke pot then she was stupid for getting that medical marijuana card in the first place – right?
Of course we could argue as to whether or not marijuana is actually a dangerous, mind altering drug that would be problematic if it were used by someone in possession of a firearm. I’m not advocating drug use here! But the reality is that the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has set the bar that low.
Consider this fact; whether you are aware of it or not you already know perhaps dozens of “drug users.” These are people you work with, they’re your children, your brothers and sisters, your aunts and uncles, your mechanic, your hunting buddies, maybe even your pastor, or your babysitter, or they guy that comes into your home and services your heating system each fall. If you’re obviously and openly opposed to marijuana use, then these otherwise normal law-abiding folks simply don’t discuss their pot use with you. You’re simply not invited to (or you consciously avoid) events where pot will be used. In states where marijuana (medical or recreational) is ALREADY legal (despite federal laws that have NOT changed) these people have probably ALREADY obtained medical marijuana cards (or are otherwise on record as marijuana purchasers) and as a result have ALREADY jeopardized their ability to purchase a firearm.
Keep in mind that we’re not talking about carrying a firearm concealed here – we’re talking about being able to buy a firearm in the first place! However, this legal decision certainly paves the way for denying concealed carry permits on the same grounds… and perhaps lays the groundwork for revoking previously issued concealed carry permits held by these “drug users.”
In certain circumstances I can certainly envision confiscation of firearms already legally purchased by “drug users.” I’m not talking about cops going door-to-door here, but potentially about the confiscation of firearms “discovered” in the homes of these “known drug users” during the investigation of just about any crime by the Police, or perhaps in their cars during a traffic stop. Within the parameters of this legal decision these weapons could easily be confiscated and impounded, and you’d be forced to pursue legal action to get them back.
“Ya”, you still say, “sucks to be them I suppose, but that won’t apply to me… CAUSE I DON’T HOLD A MEDICAL MARIJUANA CARD!” Really?
Well what if you have a very common name and you wind up on “the list” confused with someone else? What if someone steals your identity and buys pot in order to preserve their own ability to continue to buy firearms, or because they hold a sensitive government job? What if someone just decides to screw you over and figures out a way to buy pot under your name? What if your vindictive ex-wife happens to work in the office that submits these names? What if… oh, I don’t know… what if the government SOMEHOW makes a MISTAKE and your good name winds up on one of these lists anyway? Are you prepared to engage in the legal battle to get your name off of this “list” – a process that would almost certainly take a year or more and probably cost you thousands of dollars in legal fees?
“Well Pirate”, you exclaim, “this will just never stand up in court! It’s clearly a violation of our 2nd Amendment rights!” Only if the Supreme Court strikes down the 9th Circuit me mateys… they’re the only ones who can!
This is a brilliant anti-gun action. No matter how fast Ms. Wilson and her attorney move it will be impossible for her case to be heard by the Supreme Court before the election… about the time that the replacement for deceased Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia is selected. Of course if Hillary Clinton is elected you may rest assured that the next two (or perhaps even three) Supreme Court Justices appointed to LIFETIME APPOINTMENTS will be solidly anti-gun.
When this does eventually arrive at the Supreme Court how exactly would a pro-gun attorney even begin to construct an argument to combat this action? What would that look like? Who in their right mind would try to tell Supreme Court that it’s perfectly fine to allow “drug users” to own guns? That my friends is whacha call a non-starter!
Add this to a couple of other previous, recently successful erosions of our 2nd Amendment rights that are ALREADY IN PLACE; Social Security recipients with “designated payees” (https://www.reddit.com/r/Conservative/comments/4i00ho/it_begins_obama_administration_publishes_rule), and disabled military veterans who have been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress syndrome or who have suffered a traumatic brain injury of some kind (http://www.military.com/daily-news/2015/04/17/senator-veterans-still-losing-gun-rights-because-of-va-reporting.html.)
How many millions of Americans do you think are ALREADY unable to purchase a firearm? These are not laws that have been passed, they are simply “lists” that the government maintains, and which the FBI references when it performs its background checks… without oversight or redress… until it’s too late, and you have to take your failed background check to court at your own expense and PROVE you’re fit to own a handgun. You will quite literally be guilty until you PROVE that you are innocent.
Let’s take this just a bit further. Let’s say that you never did get an official medical marijuana card, but back in 2003 you were arrested for possession of marijuana. Consider that in the case above Ms. Wilson testified in court that she didn’t even use pot but was still denied a clean background check to purchase a firearm. What makes you think your name won’t be added to “the list” as a suspected “drug user” for that arrest back in 2003? You’ll never even know it unless you try to buy a gun.
Why stop with marijuana? For the most part people with any significant history of hard drug use like Cocaine and Heroin, and those who have a record of alcohol-related convictions are already normally denied the ability to purchase a firearm, but what about people who have voluntarily joined Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous? Might they also be banned? What about people with prescriptions for long-term pain control medications… now that ObamaCare requires all of that information be funneled to the federal government?
If I can think of these extended ramifications of such a dangerous legal decision don’t you think the anti-gun lawyers that advise America’s Left will as well? I can assure you that the American anti-gun Left will not stop until they have succeeded in disarming the citizens of this country. If you believe otherwise you are living in a fantasy world.
Couple all of this with laws that are already on the books in many states which have already been upheld by various courts, such as limits on magazine capacity, certain types of ammunition, certain weapon configurations (barrel length, flash suppressors, carry handles, Picatinny rail attachment points, et cetera [see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Federal_Assault_Weapons_Ban]), and we will soon be living in a country where MOST of us cannot pass a background check and even when we do the weapons that are still legal will be adequate for hunting and that’s about it.
Now consider this; America’s pro-drug Liberals are pulling out all the stops to get marijuana legalized in all of the country’s 50 states and 4 territories. “This is a pivotal year for American drug policy. More states than ever will consider easing restrictions on marijuana use this November: Voters in five states will decide whether to fully legalize recreational use, while voters in four more will weigh in on whether to allow medical marijuana.” (https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2016/09/02/an-unprecedented-number-of-states-will-vote-on-marijuana-this-fall) While I don’t think that this is a conscious effort to limit firearms purchases it will have that effect if this ruling is not overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court.
Oh and one last area of concern – the U.N. Arms Trade Treaty – which the U.S. has already signed but has yet to ratify. This treaty is at least problematic and if ratified will increase the cost of weapons and ammunition, as well as provide the U.N. with a back door into U.S. firearms policy, regulation and legislation. If Hillary Clinton becomes our next President she will certainly push this issue. She’ll need the support of Congress, but that may not be too difficult to come by since many “Republicans” are themselves not solidly pro-gun.
So ya… you go right ahead and vote in more anti-gun Liberals alrighty – cause you just can’t tolerate how rude the Republican candidate is. That’s the ticket! That’ll fix things up… and then you’ll be able to say “Well, at least I didn’t vote for Trump!”