Last week, a federal district judge in Oklahoma ruled that a federal law prohibiting marijuana users from possessing guns is unconstitutional. This ruling was in response to an indictment against Jared Harrison, who was charged in August with violating the law. U.S. District Judge Patrick Wyrick determined that the law was unconstitutional because it infringed on Americans’ Second Amendment rights. He argued that the government can protect the public from dangerous people possessing guns, but it cannot justify stripping someone of their right to possess a firearm based on their status as a marijuana user.
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Judge Wyrick also noted that marijuana is legal for medical use in Oklahoma and other states, and using the drug is not a violent or threatening act. He stated that the nation’s history and tradition of firearms regulation does not support the ban on marijuana users owning guns. Laura Deskin, a public defender representing Harrison, said the ruling was a “step in the right direction for a large number of Americans who deserve the right to bear arms and protect their homes just like any other American.”
Harrison was arrested in May 2022 following a traffic stop, during which police found a loaded revolver and marijuana in his vehicle. He told police he was on his way to a medical marijuana dispensary but did not have a state-issued medical marijuana card. Federal prosecutors argued that the gun law was consistent with a longstanding historical tradition of disarming felons, the mentally ill, and the intoxicated. However, the U.S. Department of Justice is likely to appeal the ruling.
The U.S. Supreme Court struck down a New York gun law last year that would have required residents to provide “proper cause” to obtain a concealed carry handgun permit. In the majority opinion, Justice Clarence Thomas wrote that the right to bear arms should be subject to a different set of rules apart from the other rights detailed in the Bill of Rights. Since then, other court decisions have protected Americans’ right to own guns.
The ruling in Oklahoma is an important victory for those who believe that individuals should not be denied their Second Amendment rights due to their use of marijuana. It is also a reminder that the right to bear arms is an important part of American history and tradition and should be respected and protected by all levels of government. The ruling may have implications for other states that have legalized marijuana for medical or recreational use, as well as those who are considering doing so in the future.
The preceding article is a summary of an article that originally appeared on Townhall