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Priorities in Washington, DC

If you’re a Washington, DC resident, you can qualify for a license to purchase marijuana, a substance banned under federal laws, for $100.

Meanwhile, a license to possess a handgun in your home, a constitutionally protected right, will set you back nearly double that amount.

Priorities.

20 Responses to “Priorities in Washington, DC”

  1. Sigivald says:

    Normally I’d say the Commerce Clause, no matter what Raich says, gives the Feds no lawful authority at all to ban dope*.

    But then, DC is directly under Federal law, so DC is the one non-military place in the country where the Federal ban on marijuana possession is not repugnant to the Constitution.

    I just find that amusing.

    (*I always want to ask those who feel otherwise why it was that Congress thought it needed an amendment to ban liquor, but somehow dope is different…)

  2. Zermoid says:

    So in the Federal enclave of DC you can buy a card to legally buy weed, even though they say it’s against their own laws to own or use it. But the same thing happening in Colorado or Washington State is illegal and will be cracked down on by the same federal govt.

    Meanwhile guns, which you have a Constitutional Right to have and carry, is more heavily restricted and more expensive to get a license for than a supposedly illegal substance.

    Have we just entered the Twilight Zone?

  3. Billll says:

    Government cheese. That license to buy weed pretty much disqualifies you from owning a firearm. See the question on the 4473 that asks about using illegal drugs. It means on a Federal level, notwithstanding what your state allows.

    Of course since they don’t test for drugs at the gun store, I suppose you could lie and say no. Suggestion: Don’t go in to buy a gun with dreds, tie-dye, and patchouli. The dealer might become suspicious.

  4. A Critic says:

    Medical marijuana is far more important. There are alternatives to guns for defense, for a great many people there are no alternatives or they are terrible substitutes. Further there is only a chance that one may need to use a gun, but for many they have a daily need for their medicine. Many more people die from being denied med marijuana than die from being denied their gun rights. Its also much easier to illegally obtain and carry a gun than to find medical marijuana.

    • J says:

      “Many more people die from being denied med marijuana than die from being denied their gun rights. Its also much easier to illegally obtain and carry a gun than to find medical marijuana.”

      *Citation needed.

      • A Critic says:

        *Citation needed.

        Public knowledge + deduction. There’s far less than 20000 homicides involving guns – and many of those people were not killed due to being disarmed by gun control. Many millions of people die from cancer, epilepsy, MS, ALS, and many many many other diseases in which medical marijuana relieves the symptoms of the disease or the treatments – and those people are either denied access to medical marijuana entirely or even in medical marijuana states they usually only have access to marijuana that is bred for the preferences of the recreational marijuana market, they do not have access to the full range of medical marijuana (i.e. most dispensaries have 0 or perhaps 1 type of high CBD low THC marijuana) let alone the marijuana derived products which haven’t yet been developed due to the prohibition on medical marijuana research.

        A customer of mine is about to undergo treatment for cancer here in California – and she had to fight her doctor for 3 months to get him to write a recommendation.

        I was misdiagnosed for over a decade, turns out my “PTSD” is almost certainly temporal lobe epilepsy, my mistreated condition worsened until I had a siezure while biking last year which nearly killed me.

        And if you haven’t heard of it, the newest development in medical marijuana is CBD heavy strains and products. This is the second most prevelant cannabinoid in marijuana, largely non-existent in today’s popular recreational as not only doe it not get you high it actually counters the high of THC (which many people especially older folks who remember older types of marijuana like as it mellows the THC). I’ve found it to be a miracle – and so has my customer with cancer. For more info: ProjectCBD.org.

        If you examine the efficiency of medical marijuana as it is currently understood it is self evident that far more than 20,000 people die every year because of the prohibition on medical marijuana. According to http://facesepilepsy.org/ 50,000 people die every year in the US from epilepsy alone. I would be suprised if less than half of those would be effectively treated by a high CBD regimen.

        This is one of the greatest acts of mass murder in history – and it’s one of the most brilliant due to the indirect action of preventing the development and application of a real miracle drug (actually several if not dozens of new drugs as there are so many different cannabinoids in marijuana). If this sounds like stoner talk please review the scientific literature currently available.

        And now I’m gonna go smoke marijuana and not get high…and not have a siezure like I did this morning after running out of my CBD tincture.

        • You seriously think it is easier to find a decent functional firearm in a ban state than it is to find some weed?

          Please go cruise the streets of DC — at least a half dozen blocks off the mall — and let me know how your quest for an illegal gun goes. Or go cruise Chicago, Cali, or some other liberal utopia.

          I have a Specifically Enumerated Constitutional and Natural right to possess the most effective means of self defense. Neither the Federal Government nor the Sovereign States (with their police powers) may infringe upon that right.

          While I think the ability to regulate stuff like dope (especially that which does not travel in or affect insterstate commerce in any clear way) should be beyond the Fed Gov’s power, it is certainly not beyond the power of the states.

          Look, I think the war on drugs is stupid and has been terribly destructive to our society in many ways. I’d be all for legalizing pot. But I will support a politician who is pro-gun rights yet wants to crack down harshly on those toking up before I support an anti-gunner. I’d prefer a politician who is pro-gun rights and pro-pot decriminalization in a perfect world, but given that we live in a very imperfect society, I’ll take the guy or gal who (A) doesn’t want me on a boxcar and (B) at least pays lip service to respecting our Constitutional rights and honoring his/her oath of office.

          • A Critic says:

            “You seriously think it is easier to find a decent functional firearm in a ban state than it is to find some weed?”

            Medical grade marijuana requires at least two main things: no pesticides, mold, mildew or other contaminents that can sicken or kill someone (especially people with AIDS or other serious illnesses) – and high CBD at least as an option. The odds of finding high CBD strains here in medical marijuana California is about 1/500 – the odds in a ban state/DC are surely far lower.

            And in reality there are two other requirements: people need 1) lab tested for cannabinoids so they can choose the correct type of marijuana and 2) access to the type of product that works best for them. Serious patients usually don’t like to smoke or even vaporize marijuana flowers, some prefer concentrates but many of the really sick prefer tinctures (like me) or salves. You ever see a street drug dealer offer marijuana lotions for people with arthritis or any of the many other problems best treated this way? I don’t think so.

            “Please go cruise the streets of DC — at least a half dozen blocks off the mall — and let me know how your quest for an illegal gun goes. Or go cruise Chicago, Cali, or some other liberal utopia.”

            If one doesn’t get robbed one can get a gun in any city if one has cash and the nerve to ask around – just like any drug. Try and you can find a good gun.

            “I have a Specifically Enumerated Constitutional and Natural right to possess the most effective means of self defense. Neither the Federal Government nor the Sovereign States (with their police powers) may infringe upon that right.

            While I think the ability to regulate stuff like dope (especially that which does not travel in or affect insterstate commerce in any clear way) should be beyond the Fed Gov’s power, it is certainly not beyond the power of the states.”

            Prohibition isn’t regulation. No government on earth can possibly have the power to prohibit medicine. If you cede them that power then you are a serf at best. This is especially true in America – the land where the right to life has a very long and strong legal and historical tradition of being recognized.

            “Look, I think the war on drugs is stupid and has been terribly destructive to our society in many ways. I’d be all for legalizing pot. But I will support a politician who is pro-gun rights yet wants to crack down harshly on those toking up before I support an anti-gunner. I’d prefer a politician who is pro-gun rights and pro-pot decriminalization in a perfect world, but given that we live in a very imperfect society, I’ll take the guy or gal who (A) doesn’t want me on a boxcar and (B) at least pays lip service to respecting our Constitutional rights and honoring his/her oath of office.”

            So you’ll sell out the sick and dying so that you can carry a gun. The principle reason appears to be your ignorance of the facts of medical marijuana – ignorance which can be blamed in large part on the very same politicians you don’t trust and who very often conspire against your gun rights as they have very successfully hidden the truth about marijuana and it’s medical benefits.

            You aren’t alone. Seems probable to me the majority of pro-gun voters take your stance assumming they don’t favor prohibition of medical marijuana – just like pro-pot people will usually choose the pro-pot candidate over the pro-gun candidate, and they will do so because they fail to grasp how great guns are – in large part thanks to the misinformation and propaganda of the anti-gun politicians. This is the brilliant divide and conquer move by the state by which the masses are ruled.

            And if these politicians are willing to deny even their own relatives and even themselves in many cases the most effective medicine – do you really think they are going to keep you out of a boxcar?

            • Please point to a Constitutional cite that identifies your right to access medicine of your choice.

              The states are sovereign and possess broad police powers. They may generally do as they please, so long as it is consistent with incorporated federal rights (per the 14th Amendment). That is the point of the 10th Amendment.

              Can a state prohibit access to medicine? I don’t think it is good policy in many cases, but it seems to be well within a state’s power to do so. If the .gov wanted to ban, say, antibiotics next week — why could they not? I’d imagine that a simple rational basis test would likely satisfy the courts on this issue, so a simplistic and not very strong argument like, “We are concerned about drug-resistant disease strains so we need to ban antibiotics” would have a decent chance of passing judicial review.

              The federal enclave of DC is a bit odder in that it is not a state. It seems that within this enclave, though, the federal government possesses many of the police powers of a state.

              The right to keep and bear arms is a core specifically enumerated Constitutional and Natural right. Any restrictions on it should be subjected to at least intermediate if not strict scrutiny. The “right to medicine of your choice” is perhaps an implied right of the 4A, or of the 9A. At best I see it qualifying for rational basis review. If there are any court cases which can shed further light on a standard of review for restrictions affecting a “right to medicine of your choice” I’d be interested in reading the cites.

              • A Critic says:

                “Please point to a Constitutional cite that identifies your right to access medicine of your choice.”

                9th and 10th Amendments. The right to life and medicine is so basic they didn’t bother including it. Note also there is no specifically enumerated right to food – are you going to argue governments can legally ban any and all food?

                “The states are sovereign and possess broad police powers. They may generally do as they please, so long as it is consistent with incorporated federal rights (per the 14th Amendment). That is the point of the 10th Amendment.”

                Prohibition is a criminal power, not a police power.

                “Can a state prohibit access to medicine? I don’t think it is good policy in many cases, but it seems to be well within a state’s power to do so. If the .gov wanted to ban, say, antibiotics next week — why could they not? I’d imagine that a simple rational basis test would likely satisfy the courts on this issue, so a simplistic and not very strong argument like, “We are concerned about drug-resistant disease strains so we need to ban antibiotics” would have a decent chance of passing judicial review.”

                That’s pure BS. The same would apply to food, water, oxygen, and oh yeah – guns and carrying guns. You are just stringing together a few empty words like any politician or judge. There isn’t any meaning there. No truth. IT IS NOT SIMPLY RATIONAL TO KILL PEOPLE TO PREVENT THEM FROM POSSIBLY BEING HARMED BY A SIDE EFFECT, ESPECIALLY NOT FROM THE SAFEST KNOWN DRUG IN THE WORLD. By definition, in reality, truthfully, that’s irrational to the point where it is self evident you are not a sane and competent adult.

                “The right to keep and bear arms is a core specifically enumerated Constitutional and Natural right. Any restrictions on it should be subjected to at least intermediate if not strict scrutiny. The “right to medicine of your choice” is perhaps an implied right of the 4A, or of the 9A. At best I see it qualifying for rational basis review. If there are any court cases which can shed further light on a standard of review for restrictions affecting a “right to medicine of your choice” I’d be interested in reading the cites.”

                Do your own research, and most importantly, do your own thinking.

                And really, you think that people went to war over a tax on tea and other relatively trivial things to establish a government which can prohibit people with cancer, AIDS, epilepsy, MS, ALS, and many other life threatening illnesses from using the medicine that works from them? You really think that’s what they did? You really think my forefathers fought the British so that I can die of a siezure because some legislator wants to fine stoners for catching a buzz? You think that’s the law? You really believe that? You think they took up arms and fought a freaking revolution to establish a new government that could do that? You think that’s the American historical and legal tradition?

                And do you also think you are following in the tradition of the forefathers by voting for anti-life politicians who make empty promises (by your own word)? Some patriots we have in the 2nd Amendment community!

              • A Critic says:

                ““The right to keep and bear arms is a core specifically enumerated Constitutional and Natural right. ”

                Wrong on the last part. Arms is a secondary right derived primarily from the right to life. Life is the most fundamental right of all. It is THE core right.

  5. Billll says:

    Judging from the number of “green cross” dispensaries around here (Denver) about 2/3 of the 18-30 demographic is in dire medical straits from one ailment or another.

    Stay out of Denver. It’s obviously extremely unhealthy.

    • A Critic says:

      “Stay out of Denver. It’s obviously extremely unhealthy.”

      That’s the law of supply and demand meeting the law of government regulation.

      Here in California as a serious medical patient (epilepsy etc)I find dispensaries to be very uncomfortable and in one case down right disgusting. I’m cool with people buying weed in head shop type environments but I don’t want to rely on that for my anti-siezure medication.

  6. John A says:

    Of what other medication must the patient hold a license as well as a prescription?

    One of my ‘scrips is for Coumedin. This is another name for Warfarin, developed as a rat poison – and indeed often labeled as such when shipped to pharmacies. It won’t get you high, it will kill you – messily.

    Heck, if you are in hospital you may be given a morphine drip. No license.

  7. A Critic says:

    “Priorities.”

    Dear Bitter – yes you can see the priorities of the DC government. It took them what, two years to allow people to buy handguns? It’s been 15 years and they just now released the applications for medical marijuana. That shows their priorities.

    • Bitter says:

      Without even looking up the history on their relevant pot statutes, I can tell you that’s complete bullshit. DC banned guns through not accepting license applications from 1976 to 2008, and they only started accepting any applications at all (with the new jacked up prices) after two federal courts forced them to do it. You are deliberately ignoring that context to the situation while also ignoring the fact that marijuana use is illegal in any context. It doesn’t matter if you don’t think it should be. For purposes of comparing government licensing processes, it’s relevant.

      • A Critic says:

        The fact remains you can legally buy handguns in DC right now. You still can’t legally buy medical marijuana. Which restriction is harsher, the one with a higher fee or the one with no access at all?

        Medical marijuana would be legal under federal law if they followed their own rules, laws, regulations, and court orders. There is ZERO legal basis for maintaining the current scheduling – every single requirement for schedule 1 has been disproven thoroughly – and the DEA was ordered by their own law judge 25 years ago to reschedule it because there isn’t any legal basis for it to be schedule 1.

        And technically speaking, marijuana use isn’t illegal since the federal government doesn’t legally have the power to prohibit anything (except alcohol during a limited historical period).

        • Most of the readers here want (1) fewer infringements on the right to keep and bear arms and (2) do not mind fewer infringements on the right to put whatever the heck you want into your body. There is a strong libertarianish bent. I’d be happy with a politician that supported both policies.

          However, if you come and say, “Screw your guns, I want my MEDICINE and I want gun owners in prison!” then we will tell you to go pound sand.

          We have a specifically enumerated right to keep and bear arms in common usage which are especially useful for self defense or militia service. If you support policies that will put us and our families in jail for exercising this right then we will not support you.

          Try a thought experiment. Imagine you came along to, say, an NAACP meeting. You said, “You know, I’m ok with Black Codes. At least it is theoretically possibly for a black person to drink from a water fountain in public or go to a separate but equal school. Pot users have no legal recourse whatsoever. Therefore, black codes in 1950s era deep south states are a-ok!” The crowd would be a bit hostile.

          I’m sure you’ll find people willing to engage if you have any specific issues with the right to keep and bear arms here. This blog has a lot of passionate and fairly well informed readers. But if you just roll in and support the most repressive gun laws in the country as reasonable measures then we will oppose you and your politics.

          If you take the stance of, “You know, these pot laws are stupid as are the gun laws. We should have more freedom for everyone” then I suspect you would be received much differently. But so long as you want to put me and my family in prison for exercising a specifically enumerated right — well, then that doesn’t make you a political ally, does it?

          • A Critic says:

            “However, if you come and say, “Screw your guns, I want my MEDICINE and I want gun owners in prison!” then we will tell you to go pound sand.”

            I never said anything pro-gun control. I only said that in DC the govt has put far more of a priority on recognizing gun rights than recognizing medical rights.

            ” If you support policies that will put us and our families in jail for exercising this right then we will not support you.”

            I’m a liberty advocate. I’m a gun owner, gun carrier, gun shooter, who advocates getting rid of all gun control. I’m against background checks, taxes, permits, and all restrictions on magazine capacity, silencers, and machine guns. I want everyone to be able to buy a M2 over the counter with cash no questions asked, and if they have the balls and the back and lack of courtesy I want them to sling it around town in Starbucks and the library if they so choose.

            ” But if you just roll in and support the most repressive gun laws in the country as reasonable measures then we will oppose you and your politics.”

            And if I merely state the objective fact that medical marijuana users have it worse than firearm users (or potential users in both cases)- I’ll be lumped in with the anti-gun pro-med pot crowd because gun owners are usually just as much a pack animal as the pot people. See what I said above about divide and conquer.

          • A Critic says:

            Chris from AK – if you want to learn more, I recommend Constitution.org. I suggest searching for all of Jon Roland’s articles – he is a concise authority. His “Legal Theory of the Right to Keep and Bear Arms” should be a common citation but languishes in obscurity. The rest of his pieces provide for a quick education on constitutional and American law.

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