Dear Stoner: Why can’t I own a gun if I’m a medical marijuana patient? Angel
Dear Angel: Because you’re a criminal. Not in our eyes, of course, but in the eyes of the federal government, which doesn’t recognize marijuana as anything but an illegal drug.
When you buy a new gun, you’ve got to fill out a form with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms that asks if you are “an unlawful user of, or addicted to, marijuana or any depressant, stimulant, narcotic drug, or any other controlled substance.”
And although your red card makes cannabis use legal at the state level, for Uncle Sam it doesn’t change the fact that you are an “unlawful user” of marijuana. If you answer “no” to that question, you’re committing perjury. And if you answer “yes,” you’re not getting your gun. Sellers can also be fined or jailed if they know they’re selling a gun or ammunition to a pot user. (For what it’s worth, you can legally drink booze while possessing a gun as long as you aren’t drunk.) Colorado law, including laws for concealed carry, says the same thing federal law does. In fact, the only medical-cannabis state to expressly allow patients to keep their firearms is Illinois.