Article by Richard Cowan, former NORML National Director and author of why Full Spectrum Hemp CBD Components That Contribute To Entourage Effect.
In today’s highly polarized politics it is sometimes assumed that “gun rights” (Second Amendment) and “marijuana legalization” are polar opposites. I beg to differ.
On a personal note: I grew up in a house with several guns and when I lived in the country (in Texas) with snakes and rabid skunks, etc. I owned a gun and even shot a snake once. Otherwise, I don’t really feel the need for one.
Also, when I lived in other countries, I did not have the legal right, so it was not a question. In almost every place I have lived ( including Texas) marijuana, legal or not, is as easy, or easier, to get as a gun in Texas.
However, I am opposed to “gun prohibition” for many of the same reasons I am opposed to marijuana prohibition. I sometimes think that my city friends are in favor of making guns as difficult to get as possible, because they see the “carnage” from guns as a threat to public safety. That is understandable when one compares the deaths attributable to guns in our inner cities to the very low level of gun violence in Canada and Europe.
However, the problems with “gun control” are very similar to the problems associated with marijuana prohibition. There are already huge numbers of all types of guns owned by millions of law abiding Americans, just as there are vast amounts of marijuana being owned, grown and sold, even in the states with the harshest laws.
The Trump Administration is against both. “The Department of Justice has issued a new advisory requiring gun dealers in one state to conduct federal background checks on all unlicensed gun buyers because existing policies, the government argues, have enabled “habitual marijuana users” and other disqualified individuals to obtain firearms illegally.”
Also, subcultures have developed around both gun ownership and marijuana use that are actually reinforced by threats to ban them. It’s an American thing.
Unfortunately, the subculture that has developed around gun ownership has fallen victim to a number of political and financial scams. The National Rifle Association is being investigated for financial fraud.
Meanwhile, Trump is claiming that Biden will repeal the Second Amendment, which he cannot do, either legally or politically. And I’m sad to say that there are more than a few crooks and crazies in the booming cannabis sector.
The gun debate also reflects the urban/rural divisions that are roiling our politics generally. Most people who live in cities seem to have no idea how vast “flyover country” really is. On the other hand, most people in rural areas cannot imagine the level of gun violence in the inner cities.
However, most people in the inner cities don’t seem to understand how much the Drug War contributes to this violence. Ironically, banning guns to stop the violence caused by banning “drugs” only makes both problems worse.
Exhibit M: Mexico.
Mexico has very strict laws against gun ownership, and tens of thousands of its citizens are killed every year in the Drug War.
If “gun control” and Drug Prohibition really worked, Mexico would be like Luxembourg. It isn’t.
But good manners and “Gun Education” might help.
First, let me say that it is rude to smoke marijuana where it might annoy other people.
Similarly, it is rude to wave guns around in a way that makes other people feel threatened. Yeah, sure you know that the safety is on, but does everyone else?
And think how much better off we would all be if the money spent on Reefer Madness prohibitionist propaganda had been used to tell people not to leave loaded guns within reach of children. Etc.
You ain’t Willie Nelson or 007, bro. And the Feds have Atomic bombs.