Medicinal cannabis patients classed as ‘drug addicts’ by Oregon sheriffs

13 04 2011

Despite the amount of illegal firearms and genuinely harmful drugs that America seems to be knee-deep in, police in Oregon are concerned that card-holding medicinal marijuana users might be legally carrying guns.

Under the U. S. Gun Control Act of 1968, guns may not be sold to drug addicts. Most people would agree that this is a good idea, as the mental image of a ‘drug addict’ is almost always negative: shaking, dirty, paranoid, and incapable of rational thought. Nobody wants to arm that person.

An elderly medicinal marijuana user

An elderly medicinal marijuana user in Oregon (image courtesy of NORML)

Concealed Handgun Permits are refused

The sheriffs of Oregon, however, are classing medicinal cannabis users as drug addicts and refusing to issue concealed handgun permits to them. The sheriff’s office, by state law, should not refuse to grant such a license provided a list of conditions is met. These conditions usually  include U.S. citizenship, completing  a gun safety course, no criminal record, no mental illness or substance abuse problems. Again, these are all reasonable requirements, but the medicinal cannabis patients who fulfill them are still being refused the permit.

Use of prescribed marijuana should not limit a person’s rights

Retired school bus driver Cynthia Willis is one such patient, and along with three co-plaintiffs she is part of a potentially landmark case currently under consideration by the Oregon Supreme Court. Cynthia likes to carry a Walther P-22 automatic pistol, which she says she’s never had to draw, for self-defense. She also uses cannabis to control muscle spasms and pain from her arthritis, but says she never uses it when she plans to carry her gun (or drive). So far she’s won two court cases on the argument that prescribed drug use does not disqualify a person from holding a concealed gun permit, and medicinal cannabis is a prescribed drug like any other.

Outdoor medicinal marijuana

An outdoor medicinal marijuana crop in America

More at stake than the right to carry a concealed firearm

What is at stake here is not just the right of medicinal cannabis users to carry (concealed) firearms: by Oregon law, if someone doesn’t have a concealed gun permit but does have a gun license, they can simply carry the gun openly, as Cynthia plans to do if she loses her case. Given the tragic events in Alphen aan den Rijn on Saturday as the latest in a long line of horrific shootings by licensed gun owners throughout the world,  it can be argued that gun licenses should be revoked altogether.

How do you abuse your own medicinal cannabis crop?

The underlying issue of concern in Oregon is the classification of medical marijuana patients as ‘drug addicts’, with all the negative connotations of this epithet. Although cannabis seeds have never been illegal in Oregon, and it was the first state to decriminalize possession of small amounts of bud back in 1973, courts recently decided that employers had the right to fire medicinal cannabis users. The sheriffs of this county openly argue that the majority of medicinal card holders are abusing the right to use ganja as a medicine, despite the fact that buying, selling, and dispensaries are still prohibited so patients must grow their own (or have someone grow it for them without profit) in order to do so.

Flyer for the Oregon NORML Cannabis Cafe, with buds

NORML is active in Oregon, which was the first state to decriminalize possession of small amounts of cannabis.

Defending the rights of medical marijuana users

Executive Director of NORML Allen St. Pierre is focused on defending the right of every medicinal marijuana card holder to be treated like any other citizen: “A person who uses medical cannabis should not have to give up their fundamental rights as enumerated by the Constitution,”‘ St. Pierre said.

Source material for this article here .



6 responses

25 05 2011

Its really pathetic how people discriminate on your choices in life and how fundamental ignorance has bracketed GRASS as drugs. Nothin much to say that its an amazing post.
Check out this hilariously funny one with a serious message at the end.Its a must for all educated GRASShoppers.

9 07 2011
Medicinal cannabis patients classed as ‘drug addicts’ by Oregon sheriffs |

[…] View the original article here Posts Related to Medicinal cannabis patients classed as ‘drug addicts’ by Oregon sheriffsLester Grinspoon – How Medical Marijuana helped his sick son24 05 2011 Moving story by Lester Grinspoon – Associate Professor Emeritus of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School – how Medical Marijuana helped his sick …Why Medicinal Marijuana Is Here to Stay“We are not far from a time when pot will be hailed as a wonder drug.”The following is the text of a speech by Lester …10 Facts about medicinal cannabisThe best way to make change is by sharing your knowledge about cannabis and a top ten list is easy to remember and can help …Ten Celebrity Potheads That Might Surprise YouYou already know that Willie Nelson loves the green, and you’re probably not surprised to hear Jack Black is a toker. Hell, you probably even …The War On Drugs Has Failed!The global war on drugs has failed, a high-level commission comprised of former presidents, public intellectuals and other leaders studying drug policies concluded in a … Previous post → […]

13 08 2011
Potheads Directory

They shouldnt bee classifying any one as an addict without first determining if they are in fact addicted!!!

2 01 2012

First off i just want to say i live in oregon and i know many cardholders, and not one of them would ever use a gun for the wrong reason. It so wrong to take away their right from the Constitution from people that need medical marijuana to live a less painful life. And i dont think that we should discriminate against them by letting it be ok to fire employees that are cardholders. We need to stop this before all of their rights are taken away!

5 03 2014

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17 06 2014
Jamal Parpia

It’s stupid to discriminate based off of the card or a persons needs. The only time we need to worry is when the substance is abused which unfortunately has started happening after concentrate was introduced. (For those unaware of concentrate or how it is used, ). Besides that, no recorded deaths, and you don’t see people killing others do to this plant. Some people are just stupid.

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