Honolulu Police Put Pot-Related Gun Confiscation Order “Under Review”

Blue Hawaiian marijuana (courtesy allbud.com)

“The Honolulu Police Department is reviewing a policy requiring medical marijuana users to turn over their firearms,” usnews.com reports. “The department sent letters to at least 30 gun owners last month, saying they had 30 days to surrender or transfer ownership of their guns.” That caused something of an uproar in the Aloha State…and beyond! ‘Cause if Hawaii actually sent cops ’round to gun owners holding a medical marijuana card . . .

A dangerous precedent would be set. Lest we forget, Hawaii isn’t the only state to maintain a database of both medical marijuana users and gun owners. The great state of New York also keeps track of legal tokers and gat holders. And yes, federal law makes it illegal to be a weed smoker and a gun owner.

Also keep in mind that the “surrender your guns” letter sent to those 30 Hawaiians came from the Honolulu Police, not the State Police, who take a more laid-back — but not entirely laid-back — approach to the issue.

From westhawaiitoday.com:

Hawaii Police Chief Paul Ferreira

The state’s largest law-enforcement organization said it will continue to deny future gun permit applications for medical marijuana patients.

Hawaii Police Chief Paul Ferreira [above] said his department’s form letter is sent only in response to admitted medical marijuana patients who apply for a permit to acquire a firearm. Ferreira said he signs them himself.

“When someone applies for a permit to acquire a firearm and they indicate they’re a medical marijuana patient, pursuant to a 2011 opinion from the (U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives), they’re no longer qualified to possess a firearm. At that point, we send out the letter telling them their permit to acquire has been denied . . .

If you’re in possession of any firearms or ammunition, you need to turn them in,” Ferreira said Wednesday. “Over the course of this past year, I don’t recall signing more than one or two of those letters.

“We do not go out and look for medical marijuana patients. We don’t go out and ask anybody for information on medical marijuana patients, or send them letters arbitrarily. It’s only in conjunction with when they apply for a permit to acquire.”

Let’s ignore for a moment the outrageous idea that Hawaii residents need a state permit to exercise their natural, civil and Constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms. And the fact that the last state to join the union hasn’t issued a single concealed carry permit in eighteen years. Or the fact that marijuana is safer than alcohol, on every level (save criminal involvement in its cultivation and distribution).

Honolulu SWAT Team (courtesy hawaiidefensefoundation.org)

Let’s focus on the Honolulu PD’s decision to scan the state’s gun and marijuana registries for overlap, and then threaten to send gun confiscation goons (Honolulu SWAT team above) to enforce the federal ban on pot smoking gun owners.

What kind of law enforcement official would even think it’s a good idea to poke that bear? Never mind send his — make that her — officers into harm’s way to git ‘er done?

That would be Virginia-born, North Carolina-raised Honolulu Police Chief Susan Ballard (above). The officer chosen to replace Chief Kealoha after he was arrested for 20 counts of abuse of power and public corruption.

Anyway, it seems clear that Uncle Sam needs to legalize marijuana, stat. Before someone gets hurt. I mean, someone else . . .

comments

  1. avatar BLoving says:

    Tricky.
    We still deny people their civil rights if they require anti-depressants, psychotic meds, etc. and few have raised much of a stink about that (maybe we should?) – so what legal difference would it make to deny a citizen their civil rights for using yet another drug? Or is the argument in this case based on the assumption that most (but of course, not all) marijuana users don’t really have a medical need for it?
    We need to reform several problems here; so where to begin?
    🤠

    1. avatar Noishkel says:

      Well if nothing else it’s a serious problem in terms of presumption of guilt right off. Of course it is somewhat obvious that if you have the permit you’re talking the stuff actively. But even then, presumption of guilt does not allow any government agency to simple strip an enumerated right from people without a trial.

      And as to your statement about the use of any prescribed medication: well the same still holds true. Just because someone uses a psychological medication doesn’t stripe anyone of their rights either. Case in point I take a anti epileptic that can causes psychological side affects. But I have none so I have never need treatment for that.

      1. avatar Jean-Claude says:

        While I fully understand where you’re coming from, anti-depressants are a different matter.

        Anti-depressants have a clear connection to both suicidal and homicidal ideation. There is such a problem that the drug makers put a warning about such in their commercials. Marijuana doesn’t have such an effect.

        1. avatar GaPharmD says:

          Sorry to burst your bubble but no.

          Correlation does not equal causation!

          Antidepressants treat the…….depressed……who tend to have…..wait for it….

          suicidal and homicidal thoughts.

        2. avatar Snatchums says:

          Except Chantix is classified as an antidepressant and is prescribed as a smoking cessation drug. Presumably you’re prescribing it to mostly non-depressed people yet there has been a statistically significant increase in suicidal actions by people that take it.

        3. avatar GaPharmd says:

          Sorry Snatch:

          Varenicline is a partial nicotinic agonist selective for α4β2 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor subtypes

          It does have some crazy side effects but back to the point…..correlation does not equal causation no matter how many times you try and force it!

      2. avatar uncommon_sense says:

        Noishkel,

        “… presumption of guilt does not allow any government agency to simple strip an enumerated right from people without a trial.”

        Actually, the standard is that government must go through “due process” before denying someone their rights.

        Unfortunately, our local, state, and federal governments have interpreted due process to mean that a “duly elected/appointed government employee acting in the performance of his/her official duties” can simply declare your “transgression” and deny your rights.

    2. avatar Chris says:

      “We still deny people their civil rights if they require anti-depressants, psychotic meds, etc. and few have raised much of a stink about that ”

      Um, because they aren’t denied their civil (or constitutional) rights? I take “anti-depressants, psychotic meds, etc” as you put it (several, in fact), and I’m still fully qualified to own firearms, live alone, work, and all the other things that otherwise unmedicated people would have. The DSM V is about 1,000 pages long and there’s a good reason for it, everybody has something going on that isn’t quite right but that’s not necessarily a bad thing.

      1. avatar BLoving says:

        *looks at Question 11e and 11f on the 4473 form*
        Hmm. K.
        You’re right. You’ve been neither adjudicated mentally defective, involuntarily commited, nor are an UNLAWFUL user of any such prescription or drug.
        Welp. That answers one part of the problem, but we still have some other loose ends to tie up here before this matter is settled.

        1. avatar grendal113 says:

          except these are medical patients. yeah you popping oxy without a permit/prescription is illegal but the police don’t get to remove my gun rights because I have shoulder surgery. why would anyone think this is a great idea and way to prevent crime? Unless having a medical marijuana permit is shown to increase criminal activity? has it ?

        2. avatar Chris says:

          Correct, I have neither but the first two are only five-year bans. Not sure about the third one because I’ve never been a drug addict. There’s a footnote to read the instructions for 11F. The restrictions for mental health reasons are actually not that difficult, lifetime bans are limited to those with a severe mental disability that were forcibly dragged through the courts. There’s also a thing about conservatorship, which is really bad but it sounds like nothing. That’s when a court has decided you are no longer able to make your own decisions and, usually a family member, is now fully responsible for everything you do. That’s also only a ban until the conservatorship ends. Exceptions for 11F include voluntary stays, which I’ve been through more than once but they’re only for a few days at a time and it’s never been dramatic. They’re very boring because you’re just waiting to see a doctor and then usually get released the next day.

    3. avatar Doug says:

      Contact your federal representatives and request their support, that is how. Have your friends and acquaintances make similar appeals. Run for office.

  2. avatar GunzGunzGunz says:

    Happy National Apple Pie Day

  3. avatar Chris says:

    As the old saying: No good deed goes unpunished. Buy your pot on the streets and there you go, no need to lie on that 4473 or be subjected to confiscation by your friendly neighborhood gestapo.

    1. avatar achmed says:

      Yup, 100%. I don’t smoke pot for medical or any other reason, but the next time some politician comes along to craft some nifty sounding regulatory scheme this is a great example of why they should get the middle finger salute.

      1. avatar Lost Down South says:

        Having smoked the stuff for a very short time long ago, let me tell you it makes you stupid, and for a longer time than a drink or two.

        THC is also stored in fat cells which is then released at an unknown time when you burn that cell. Got re-stoned once at the gym…with 300lbs on my shoulders doing swats. Bad bad bad. Swore off of it that very moment. Never again.

  4. avatar Desert Ranger Tycho says:

    I have several friends directly affected by this corruption and I will call it what it is – selective enforcement of federal laws when it suits the agenda of the powers that be. We saw the same thing with Kealoha (no aloha there) and his denial of concealed carry (for starters).
    It is interesting how fast the HPD chief backpedaled when the phones started ringing off the hook. Let’s face it – pot growers have enough legitimacy and cash to fight this in court… and that will leave the Democrats here with egg on their face. This has pissed off a very vocal, well organized and well funded portion of the left’s base. As I told my friends who are not yet into guns but enjoy marijuana -welcome to the fight for your civil rights.

    Note- I have never smoked marijuana ever but given the evidence it poses no threat if legalized.

  5. avatar CharlieKing1 says:

    Maj. Ballard reminds me of another Heather Fong, the former SFPD police chief who skipped handgun qualifications..http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/S-F-police-chief-has-skipped-target-practice-3281784.php
    Sorry, it’s hard for me not to judge a book by its cover after being in LE for over 30+ years, and for the haters, I don’t have anything against a female police chief or sheriff for that matter. I just don’t like the hypocrisy exhibited by Fong, et al…

  6. avatar GS650G says:

    Maybe people shouldn’t smoke pot.

    1. avatar BLoving says:

      See, it’s not that simple though…
      Granted, I’d wager the number of prescription holders for marijuana that have a legitimate medical need for it are about as common as the folks who had prescriptions to go down to Eckerds Drugstore for a pint of medical whiskey back in the 1920s (yes, that WAS a thing). A few years ago, my own wife suffered from nearly daily migraines so bad and difficult to treat her own doctor asked her if she would consider marijuana as a treatment. She probably would have taken a proper prescription for it but no… this is Texas! No medi-mary-jane for you, no matter how legitimate your need. So she had to do it the less-than-legal way. No easy answers here… 🤠

    2. avatar Ed says:

      A simple statement from a obviously simple mind.

      1. avatar Ralph says:

        Maybe simple minded, maybe stoned.

        1. avatar anaxis says:

          Eh…. just smallminded, rather than simple; mental-midgets overcompensate . Simple ones just react by drooling and repeating​ what they heard from someone else.

          If he were none of those things & just stoned, we’d see a philosophical textwall about how The Dark Side of the Moon syncs perfectly the 2008 Knob Creek MG Shoot DVD.

          Speaking of…. if has one of those DVDs they don’t want anymore, I’ve got DSoTM on vinyl, and am seriously overdue for some cyclic relaxation.

    3. avatar int19h says:

      Yep, edibles are way more convenient.

  7. avatar ATFAgentBob says:

    Legalize it. Regulate it like alcohol, tax it like tobacco, and stop using prescription drugs to deny people their rights!

  8. avatar jwm says:

    I don’t use alcohol or weed. I see no valid reason to ban either or deny rights based on their use.

  9. avatar The Rookie says:

    One more reason to support constitutional carry.

  10. avatar Hank says:

    “The Honolulu Police Department is reviewing a policy requiring..”

    Policy? As in department policy? Since when did department policy become rule of law? Every LE org has policies that its officers adhere too, but that’s not law. There’s a huge difference between policies and laws. Policies dictate conduct of officers, not what the general public can and can’t do. That’s law, and is made by an elected legislator. If this police department is issueing policies and then enforcing them on the public, that is an outright rogue dictatorship on US soil, that is acting outside the legal abilities of the government. If that is the case the people must immediately resist its illegal occupation of the territory and the federal government must send in the military to squash this rebellion against the constitution.

  11. avatar achmed says:

    Good article, this will smoke out the gun people who only care about freedom when it comes to one specific thing.

    But yes, absolutely marijuana needs to be legalized and these actions in Hawaii are shocking.

  12. avatar former water walker says:

    Meh…get high the old fashioned way. Keep the gubmint out of your affairs. “Addicted” to marijuana?!? Only if your tell them or have a mandated drug test. I haven’t partaken of the herb in decades either. I seriously don’t care unless you run into me on the highway in a daze…

  13. avatar Sam I Am says:

    “That caused something of an uproar in the Aloha State…and beyond! ‘Cause if Hawaii actually sent cops ’round to gun owners holding a medical marijuana card . . .”

    Really?

    Explain the difference….

    If a person with a medical MJ card lies on the 4473, and is caught, you would want the feds to identify that person, issue an arrest warrant, apprehend and try that individual. If there were several liars, you would want them all rounded up. You would want federal agents sent around to make the arrests. Are you saying you would expect some sort of uproar (as in armed response by those lying on their 4473) as the feds carry out their law enforcement duties?

    1. avatar Robert Farago says:

      I don’t want a form 4473 in the first place. The background check system and record keeping required to purchase a gun from a licensed FFL are entirely unconstitutional. As is the idea of an FFL.

      So I don’t want federal agents to have anything to do with gun purchases. Period.

      And there’s a big difference between cops knocking on your door to take your guns because you have a government-approved medical marijuana card as compared to coming after you because you’re a convicted felon in possession of a firearm (for example).

      1. avatar jwm says:

        Robert. sam i am outed himself on the post about the woman killed while walking her dog. He’s 2asux. He, like all anti gun types, is playing fast and loose with the truth. Lies is all they got.

        1. avatar Excedrine says:

          Without having two faces and double standards, they’d have no standards and no faces to be held accountable for it at all.

        2. avatar Scoutino says:

          He is 2a sux. He likes to play devil’s advocate. He uses grabber’s arguments to help us polish our own counter arguments. Uses logic, not insults. Sometimes he forgets to switch names.

    2. avatar Ing says:

      The question is about unlawful use of drugs. Medical marijuana in Hawaii is legal under state law, but not under federal law. It’s a Kafkaesque trap. A Catch-22. If you’re really in favor of having the government hunt down peaceful people who get caught in that web….

      1. avatar Sam I Am says:

        I am in favor of enforcing the laws. My “angle” was to protest RF’s idea that attempting to confiscate guns from people on the medical MJ database would result in armed revolt (or at least a few revolting). So, I posited that there is zero difference between removing guns from federal felons who violate federal drug laws, or federal felons who lied on their 4473. Given RF’s “projection” about medical MJ users not being cooperative in removing their guns, one must expect that one of those medical users who lies on the 4473 is given an automatic pass, because confiscating their firearms due to lying on the 4473 is likely to lead to armed resistance.

        Selective enforcement of laws is evil, no matter who is in power.

  14. avatar Kendahl says:

    If you answer truthfully on 4473, it’s all over anyway. The only solution is to remove marijuana from the form or to legalize it at the federal level.

    1. avatar Snatchums says:

      Agreed, but until then it needs to at least be rescheduled to Schedule IV. Then doctors would be able to write legitimate prescriptions and all of this business goes away.

      As far as recreational use I have yet to hear an argument why alcohol is legal but weed isn’t that is intellectually consistent.

  15. avatar Colt Magnum says:

    Sometimes lying is the moral thing to do. Especially, when it prevents government overreach.

  16. Uh, like I was gonna’ turn all my irons in, Man, ’cause of treating my, uh, “medical condition,” but then like the ice cream man drove by and I was like just barely able to scrounge enough change from under my sofa cushions before he got away, Man, and then I like just forgot. Happens, Man. Don’t be so uptight, Man. Like dig it, right?

  17. avatar Roymond says:

    So they invoke one unconstitutional use of authority to justify another unconstitutional use of authority.

  18. avatar Aaron M. Walker says:

    Make it a ” Capital Crime” for any Government agency, Law Enforcement organization, or its agent’s from deliberately infringing upon any lawful US citizens constitutional rights! With a minimum of up to 10 years in prison, and an automatic fine for compensatory dispensation to the aggrieved US citizen of NOT less than $ 250,000 k per incident…..As well as automatic defunding to that said agencies budget….

  19. avatar ironicatbest says:

    Weed, what a joke. It’s a plant that grows out of the ground, you don’t have to distill it. It was throwed in there along with Cocaine( against it) because coke made black men fuck white wemon. That law was championed by that FBI director who dressed up n woman’s clothes . I could remember his name but looking at that weed made me high and I forgot………

    1. avatar Snatchums says:

      That was just the racist justification. The real reason was lobbying by the paper industry because hemp produces a far superior product to wood pulp paper (requires much less toxic processing too). The Marijuana Tax Act of 1937 was to put the brakes on industrial use (until we realized we still needed it in WWII) but the individual criminalization didn’t really happen until Nixon wanted an easy way to harass hippies and shut up anti-war protestors.

  20. avatar adverse5 says:

    Does aspirin count, maybe BP meds, allergy meds, Viagra, etc.? If not, all of the above, and more, could be included eventually. No potential criminal, that’s all of us, may own a firearm, period. One thing some people do not realize, a socialist government will not be a government under The Constitution of The United States. It will be based on an entirely different concept, total control over it’s subjects, not citizens with rights, but subjects with privileges to be given, denied or taken away at will. We are one more election away from being The United Socialist Republic. Criminals will still be criminals, just with easier prey.

  21. avatar Arandom Dude says:

    Legalize it;
    It’s the best thing you can do.

  22. avatar Mark Wilson says:

    Ok. First the state police aren’t taking laid back position. HAWAII DOEST HAVE A STATE POLICE.

    1. avatar Big Bill says:

      They do, however, have a DPS.

    2. avatar Sam I Am says:

      Uh, like, I mean…why are you ignoring Steve McGarrett, Chin Ho, Danno Williams, Wo Fat, Zulu (as Kono)? 50 is real, it is the state police.

      Can’t show stuff on television that isn’t true.

  23. avatar Dyspeptic Gunsmith says:

    Moral of the story:

    When the government wants to make a list and put you on it, you say “No.”

    Any time some parasite in government wants to make a list, it can and will eventually be used against you. It doesn’t matter how innocuous the reason for the list & the gathering of data for said list seemed at the time they created the list. Bureaucrats loves lists in order to grab up a bunch of people to shaft/harass/annoy/threaten. Doesn’t matter if it’s a list of gun owners, pot smokers, list of farmers growing a particular crop, list of owners of a particular make/model of car, you name it.

  24. avatar Klaus Von Schmitto says:

    That is some good looking dope, right there.

  25. avatar Jay in Florida says:

    It all begins with the FDA. Have any here even tried to read a subsection about a classification of a particular drug. Its all written in legalese which Im sure 99% of lawyers and 0% of doctors let alone a normal citizen can understand.
    Im a Type 1 diabetic on 7 prescription drugs.
    When filling out a form 4473 a basically unconstitutional form to begin with.
    I believe its question 13??
    Asking if you are an user or addicted to an illegal drug??
    Well if you have are taking a prescribed legal drug you have to answer it as NO.
    As a person who doesnt smoke pot and cant for the life of me understand how pot can be illegal federal or otherwise.
    Some users might answer it as No. Then according to Fed law they have lied on the form.
    A double edged sword for sure.
    The answer here of course is to have Pot legal under the Fed system of classification.
    Now as a non pot smoker how can we all get this relatively harmless to the user as far as I know, drug off the Feds books??
    Otherwise if the states send cops in to take guns. Its not if. Its only when will someone get killed over this nonsense??

  26. avatar Richard B Jones says:

    Does anybody read the story? MJ use is federally illegal. The background check asks about “illegal” drug use and if you answer truthfully about so callled “medical” MJ you will be denied buying a firearm. This is federal and true in every state. There is no federal law that makes drug use, legal or otherwise, a criteria for not possessing a firearm only buying one from a dealer. Maybe Hawaii has a law about this but I don’t think so. Cross checking the medical MJ card registry against the background check would be the responsibility of the ATF to catch people lying on the form. Again, I don’t know the laws and responsibilities of Hawaii law enforcement and gun laws.

  27. avatar Chris T from KY says:

    Libertarian pot heads will always choose intoxication over gun civil rights. There is no utopia you get one or the other.

    Unless your utopia is legal marijuana intoxication. Then you are set in California, Colorado, Hawaii, Washington State.

    Libertarians will always vote for the anti gun civil rights politicians, but who are also pro legal marijuana intoxication. That is how they will get you in the end.
    Because you say putting things into your body is the most important thing to you, than anything else.

    1. avatar Shallnot BeInfringed says:

      Um… nobody even mentioned Libertarians until you, in the second to last post on this page… what the hell do Libertarians have to do with this conversation? Do you honestly think that only Libertarians smoke pot? Or that all Libertarians are identical, with the same values and habits? Or that every occasional toker, all around the country, feels that “putting things into your body is the most important thing to you, than anything else”?

      Wow – I’m speechless. And you’re clueless. The value of every word you’ve written on this website just went out the window, as far as I’m concerned.

      I’m sure glad to know that you support freedom… but only the freedom to do what you want!

  28. avatar wyantry says:

    So what about those folks out in the-world who HAVE a medical Cannabis Card BUT DO NOT CONSUME? Would they be prohibited from gun ownership?

    They might answer the question on the 4473. What then?

    It is all non-constitutional BS!

  29. The problem here isn’t what this or that drug is, or is not.

    The PROBLEM is a government is using registration records to confiscate guns from its citizens.

    Get it?

    1. Using registration records to confiscate firearms is a serious problem. A much more pernicious problem, however, is government identifying non-offensive behavior (substance use, speeding, etc.) as a reliable predictor of irresponsible and violent criminal activity. Minority Report, anyone?

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