Marijuana, Government Registries and Guns by Tom Reynolds
Recent headlines accuse the federal government of illegally having a registry of gun owners and some congressmen are accusing the CIA of illegally gathering information on US citizens. Besides the usual reason that a gun registry is a prelude to gun confiscation, why should New York State gun owners be concerned if the federal government illegally compiles a gun registry?
The New York State government - in its infinite wisdom but mostly to get more tax dollars - has legalized the use of marijuana.
To legally purchase a firearm in New York State from an FFL, you need to fill out BATFE Form 4473. On it, question 11.e. asks: “Are you an unlawful user of, or addicted to, marijuana…”? If you use marijuana, you are automatically an unlawful user because it’s use is still illegal under federal law and federal law supersedes state law. If you answer yes to the question, you are disqualified from buying the firearm.
Question 11.e. is worded in the present tense, “Are you now” (at this moment when you are filling out the form) addicted to or a user of marijuana. Since most gun owners are law abiding and, previously, the use of marijuana was illegal in NY State, this was not usually a problem.
But what about future use? It gets complicated and gun grabbers love complicated.
What if you had never used marijuana at the time you filled out the form but, since NY has given its blessing, after buying a gun you decide to start using marijuana on occasion? Maybe even only once?
Unlike voting, where it is “racism” to have to have to show a picture ID to vote, it’s not “racism” to have to show a picture ID to buy marijuana. That ID will probably be a driver’s license. Will that identifying information be turned over to the government? It is not illegal to keep a registry of marijuana users. If so, the government then knows that you used marijuana and, if it also keeps a gun owners registry, knows that you have a gun. (Theoretically, the government should only know if you have a pistol permit since it is forbidden by law from keeping a gun registry and we all know the D.C. and Albany Swamps always follow the law.) In order to harass gun owners, will the nice people at BATFE cross reference and use that information as a basis to open an investigation into whether you lied when you filled out 4473? Will those nice people interpret that 4473 also applies to future use and not just use at the time you bought your firearm? If they interpret the law in the latter way, can you expect a visit from law enforcement to confiscate your firearms and even prosecute you?
Just a conspiracy theory? Would gun grabbers use a possible loophole or change a definition from present tense to future tense in order to further their anti-gun agenda? Would the government violate existing law and keep a gun registry? Does the left want to confiscate all guns from civilians?