Can you use cannabis and own a gun?
RAPID CITY, S.D. (KEVN) - South Dakota voters passed two marijuana ballot measures in last November’s election.
With the implementation of legal medical marijuana already taking place, there are concerns as to what people may be sacrificing since marijuana is still illegal federally.
When it comes to cannabis, Legal complications between the federal government and states have existed since states began legalizing both medical and recreational marijuana. One of those legal gray areas is the right to purchase a firearm. Because background checks on guns are done by the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, you could be forfeiting your right to own a gun by using marijuana, regardless of if it’s legal where you live.
Chris Johnson, assistant majority leader of the South Dakota House of Representatives, said that the federal government is going to have to answer for this legal gray area.
“It’s a topic that’s in flux,” Johnson said. “As we speak, there are things happening, there will be things happening tomorrow all these moving parts will be different from the day before.”
The public’s view on marijuana is one of those things that are in flux, as is what the federal government might do about it.
U.S. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer introduced legislation Wednesday that would legalize cannabis at the federal level.
“Over the past decade, Americans’ attitudes toward marijuana have undergone a dramatic transformation,” Schumer said. “70% of Americans support the adult use of marijuana.”
Johnson said that the right to purchase a firearm, along with other legal difficulties, are things that citizens should be aware of, and that passing marijuana legalization is a big responsibility.
“I’d like South Dakotans to keep in mind, as I’m sure they already know, voting yes or no as they do comes with a big responsibility of what the outcome brings with it,” Johnson said.
Schumer even referenced Amendment A and I.M. 26 at a press conference this morning saying “if a conservative state like South Dakota can do it, then so can the U.S. Senate.”
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