Colorado Moves To Protect Firearms Rights Of Medical Marijuana Users

Emily Baker Rally for our Rights AR15 Colorado

Colorado is one of the most diverse states in the nation –  and that shines when examining the political landscape.  This past election, Democrats captured a state majority of which has not been seen since 1936 – securing the governorship, both branches of the state legislature, as well as every other other statewide seat.

But simultaneously in 2018 voters exemplified their limited government, libertarian-ish values by rejecting ballot initiatives that would have raised taxes to fund education and transportation infrastructure, as well as soundly rejecting an initiative that would have limited new oil and gas drilling.  And in 2013, Democrat heavy districts recalled Democrat lawmakers over gun control.  Colorado may be blue, but they understand the importance of their gun rights.

In 2012, Colorado was one of the first states in the nation to legalize recreational marijuana.  This was a ballot initiative voters approved as a Constitutional amendment, and it is now ingrained in the state’s most sound legal document.

What many are unaware of is that medical marijuana has been legal in Colorado since 2000.  Medical purposes vary greatly.  Medicinally, marijuana is used for veterans with PTSD.  It has been proven to aid in reducing everything from seizures to Parkinson’s symptoms.  Terminal cancer patients regularly use it for pain.  The list goes on.  And many of the medical marijuana products contain little to no THC.

Just like recreational marijuana, medical marijuana is also espoused in the state Constitution – right next to firearms rights.  Unfortunately the legislature has never reconciled the two.

That will change if Republican State Senator Vicki Marble and Democrat House Representative Bri Buentello have their way.  Late last month, SB19-093 – “Firearms Rights for Medical Marijuana Users”, was introduced into the current legislative session.   This bill has support from those in the medical marijuana community, the veterans community, the firearms community, many from the healthcare community, and even the ACLU.

The bill clarifies that the department of public safety is prohibited from sharing confidential information relating to the medical marijuana registry with law enforcement for the purpose of conducting a background check related to the transfer of firearms.

What this does is protect the firearms rights of those who simultaneously possess a firearm (or were to inherit one) while also holding a medical marijuana card.  Unlike recreational marijuana users, medical marijuana card holders are added to a state registry.  In other states, such as Hawaii, this database has been used to confiscate firearms from those who use medical marijuana – regardless if they are a threat to the community.  Worry like this leaves those in need leary to seek help, as they fear being subject to similar action.

What this bill DOES NOT do is change any of the federal regulations – it is a protection from state infringement only.

Many have and will ask, “But if marijuana is legal in Colorado, why does this matter?” And that is a fair question. Here’s my answer:

Cost:

In Colorado, when purchasing retail, non-medical marijuana, the purchase is subject to the 2.9% state sales tax plus any local sales taxes and an additional 15% state marijuana sales tax.  

Medical marijuana purchases are exempt from the 15% tax rate.  In a world of sky rocketing medical costs, opening access to tax free medical marijuana is what is fair.

Guidance: 

For those who have been on pharmaceutical medications for their ailments – whether PTSD or pain – working with a doctor is critical.  Or simply if an individual were to choose the medical marijuana route after being giving a diagnosis of terminal cancer or chronic pain, having the opportunity to openly and willfully seek the guidance of a trained professional should be a no-brainer.  This is about true health care and compassion.

Bottom Line:

With a newly elected Colorado legislature who ran on the issues of fairness and compassion, it would be an injustice to those in need of medical treatment to not support this bill.  A bill that protects the gun rights of patients who choose to seek better health via medical marijuana.  A bill that will encourage those in medical need to seek help, rather than hide it.  A bill that allows individuals to take their healthcare into their own hands without the risk of losing their ability to defend themselves, or their loved ones.  A bill than can help get our communities off opiates.  And a bill that will lower healthcare costs.

This bill is set for a hearing on February 6, 2019 at 1:30pm in the State, Veterans, and Military Affairs Committee.  This is open to the public for both testimony and viewing.  If you would like to join with others from Rally for our Rights in support of this bill during the hearing, feel free to contact us or join our closed Facebook group for more information.

Regardless if you are able to attend this hearing, please contact the members of the State, Veterans, and Military Affairs Committee and urge them to support this legislation. 

Here is their contact information:

Senator Mike Foote: 303-866-5291 – [email protected]
Senator Vicki Marble: 303-866-4876 – [email protected]
Senator Lois Court: 303-866-4861 – [email protected]
Senator Jerry Sonnenberg: 303-866-6360 – [email protected]
Senator Rhonda Fields: 303-866-4879 – [email protected]

You can stay informed about other legislative happenings as well as alerts by connecting with us on social media and subscribing to our email list.

Why Compromise Is A Losing Game For Gun Rights

There has been a lot of talk lately about “common sense” gun laws. Anti-rights groups have been crowing for them and boasting that the vast majority of United States’ citizens want them.

But what are these “common sense” laws?

While parading a few, with the common disclaimer, “We do NOT want to take your guns!,” in fact, they DO. Along with this, the anti-rights fanatics have blathered for “compromise” and plead that lack of action has cost lives.

What, exactly, do they mean by “compromise?”

Some history:

Since 1927 the federal government has been attacking citizens’ Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms. They began by banning mail-order firearms (some exceptions); then (in 1934), short-barreled rifles and shotguns and silencers were taxed and fully automatic weapons were strictly regulated. All done in the name of “stopping crime.” In 1938 they began licensing dealers and manufacturers of firearms, and compelled them to keep records. They also banned sales to felons. It was in 1968, driven by (initially) JFK’s assassination, Martin Luther King’s murder and Robert Kennedy’s murder that federal government really stepped up restrictions on sales to minors, criminals, drug addicts and interstate firearm sales.

Finally, in 1993 (after surviving a 1981 assassination attempt on then-president Reagan, for whom he was press secretary), James Brady saw his more than a decade of campaigning for stronger gun control come to fruition: congress passed the Brady Bill and president Clinton signed it into law.

The bill required background checks for gun sales and a waiting period for handgun sales (waiting period later removed, due, in part, to legal concerns over liability in self defense purchases).

Many states (and cities) have been passing assorted “laws” restricting certain firearms with arbitrary features, assorted magazines – based on capacity, and various accessories deemed “too dangerous” (read: it looks scary!). The interesting facts here are that virtually all of these restricted or banned items still turn up in the hands of criminals. It appears the only people suffering from governmental overreach are law-abiding citizens.

So; let’s get back to the cries for “compromise:” to date, law-abiding citizens have seen rights taken at every turn, with few reversals or repeals to the restrictions (record keeping was deemed unconstitutional and later removed as a provision, some interstate sales were allowed and some import restrictions lifted).

Compromise? It appears that the anti-rights groups define compromise as trampling Constitutional rights and “allowing” law-abiding citizens to practice SOME rights protected by the Constitution – at their discretion and after paying a fine. AND – rather than defend our rights, elected charlatans and prima donnas seize the opportunity to do SOMETHING (ANYTHING!) and pass laws to infringe on the LAW-ABIDING among us. Then they crow about how they care and ignore the fact that criminals continue to commit crimes.

Remember; laws passed will have NO impact on criminals, other than to simplify their goal to steal, harm, rape and murder.

For me, and many like me, compromise means give and take. We have given much and received NOTHING, anti-rights groups have taken much and given NOTHING. So let’s stop this talk of compromise, no matter how nice it sounds to others. It is a seizure of rights, infringement, plain and simple.

“Infringe”
in·fringe
/inˈfrinj/

– to actively break the terms of a law or agreement.
– act so as to limit or undermine.

Now we’re getting somewhere. “Infringement” sounds more like what anti-rights groups term “compromise.” Why do you suppose compromise is the endorsed word? Could it be that “infringement” is specifically cited as forbidden in the text of the Second Amendment? That “compromise” sounds so friendly and reasonable, while “infringement” sounds more like the attack on rights that they are endorsing?

It appears compromise is not what they are after, so we move on.

Who decides what laws equate to “common sense” gun control? It sure SOUNDS reasonable. Unfortunately, the anti-rights groups don’t mention that they alone get to set the parameters of “common sense.” There will be no dialogue with supporters of Constitutional Rights to determine where the boundaries lie. Anti-rights fanatics will determine:

• Who is allowed to own a firearm

• How many firearms a law-abiding citizen may own

• What fee must be paid to allow law-abiding citizens to practice their Constitutionally-protected right

• EXACTLY what type of firearm law-abiding citizens may own

• How many bullets law-abiding citizens may carry said weapons

• When and where law-abiding citizens my carry or store their weapons

• How law-abiding citizens MUST store allowed weapons (often unloaded, making quick use impossible)

• In some cases, how much ammunition law-abiding citizens may possess

I repeat “law-abiding citizens” because, remember, criminals don’t worry about what laws “feel good” politicians pass.

Only self-aggrandizing, foolish politicians would think restricting the rights of all will impact the actions of criminals.

Tired of being demonized as a law abiding gun owner?  Help us get these billboards up!  Donate here: www.gofundme.com/gun-rights-billboards

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Only Days Left For Boulder, CO Residents To Register Their Firearms

Rally for our Rights has been at the forefront of Boulder, Colorado’s so-called “assault weapons” ban since it’s inception. We attended city council meetings and organized messaging campaigns encouraging residents to contact their local government officials. We organized a street demonstration on April 21st, 2018 in protest to the proposed ban – an event which was attended by hundreds in the heart of Colorado’s most progressive city – even in the rain/snow.  There were threats of lawsuits against Boulder, one of which came to fruition less than 24 hours after the ordinance passed, and another quickly followed.  Despite these efforts, the Boulder elites who make up the city council voted unanimously on May 15th, 2018 to ban the sale and possession of many semi-automatic rifles, pistols, and shotguns as well as bump stocks and magazines holding more than 10 rounds.  This unconstitutional move did nothing to address actual crime, but instead criminalized and demonized the law abiding.

Only Days Left For Boulder, CO Residents To Register Their Firearms : Rally for our Rights

As part of this ban, residents who owned any of the prohibited firearms prior to the day the ban went into law (June 15th, 2018) can participate in the city’s “This-Is-Not-A-Registry” program and grandfather their guns with a certification.  The last day to certify a firearm is supposed to be December 31st, 2018, but Boulder Police have stated that due to the holidays, the last day will actually be December 27th.  The complete ban will officially take effect on January 1, 2019, at which point possession of a banned weapon without a certificate will be punishable by 90 days in jail and/or a $1,000 fine, and firearms will be confiscated and destroyed.

The certification process involves taking the firearm(s) being certified to the police department (unloaded and secured in vehicle) where they will be inspected.  You must have a valid photo ID and a new background check will be run. If the the background check comes back clear, two certificates per firearm will be issued. The cost is $20 for the first firearm and $5 for each additional firearm.

Boulder Colorado Firearms Registration Certification

Gun owners must then keep the certificate with the firearm at all times – forever – otherwise they’re a criminal. Lose this piece of paper? The firearm can be confiscated. Don’t comply? Criminal. Allegedly there are no copies of these certificates kept.

According to Boulder Police Department, they have certified 85 firearms so far.  Now, let’s make this clear – this is not 85 gun owners, this is 85 firearms.  Each prohibited firearm needs it’s own certificate. With the average gun owner possessing eight firearms, it is likely less than ten people have actually complied.  But this begs a question – if they aren’t keeping records, how do they know how many certificates have been issued?  According to them they are keeping a handwritten tally.  A handwritten tally of how many law abiding gun owners are certifying their firearms, because we know the people we should actually be concerned with aren’t certifying theirs.

Then we had to ask how many bump stocks or magazines above 10 rounds have been turned in?  You guessed it, ZERO.

Boulder’s ban includes:

1.) All semi-automatic center-fire rifles that have the ability to accept a detachable magazine and have a pistol grip, telescoping stock, or off hand stabilization feature.

2.) All semi-automatic center-fire pistols that have the ability to accept a detachable magazine other than in the pistol grip or has any other secondary stabilization feature.

3.) All semi-automatic shotguns that have the ability to accept a detachable magazine, or have a fixed magazine over 5 rounds, or have any secondary stabilization features.

Read the “assault weapons” ban ordinance in it’s entirety here.

And read the bump stock/magazine ban ordinance here.

What’s Next:

One of the most common questions we receive is how is this legal, and if it has been challenged in court.  It is not legal, and it is being challenged in court.  The day after the ordinance passed into law, Mountain States Legal Foundation filed a suit in federal court.  Not long after, the NRA filed a suit in state court.  The federal suit is on hold until the state suit is decided.

Colorado has a preemption law in its state constitution that clearly states what Boulder has done is not legal.

C.R.S. 29-11.7-103:

A local government may not enact an ordinance, regulation, or other law that prohibits the sale, purchase, or possession of a firearm that a person may lawfully sell, purchase, or possess under state or federal law. Any such ordinance, regulation, or other law enacted by a local government prior to March 18, 2003, is void and unenforceable.

Boulder is claiming because it is a home rule city, it is not beholden to the state constitution or state laws.  If this is the case, we have to wonder if more gun friendly home rule cities can claim the same, and exempt themselves from Colorado’s magazine limits and enhanced background checks.  Your move, Colorado courts.

With 250,000 medical malpractice deaths each year, you are 10,000 times more likely to be killed by a doctor than an AR-15.  Help us get this billboard up!  Donate here: www.gofundme.com/gun-rights-billboards

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Here’s What Boulder, CO Is Making Gun Owners Do!

Boulder Colorado Firearms Registration Certification

A Boulder, CO resident who had their firearm “certified” under the city’s new “assault weapons” ban brought this to us. We’ve been wanting to see one but not many people are interested in registering their firearms.

In order to be part of Boulder’s “This-Is-Not-A-Registry” program, anyone who owned one of the banned firearms prior to June 15th, 2018 must go to the police department and have it “certified” before Dec 31st, 2018. They must then keep the certificate with the firearm at all times – forever – otherwise they’re a criminal. Lose this piece of paper? The firearm will be confiscated. Don’t comply? Criminal. Allegedly there are no copies of these certificates kept.

Requirements for certification include: Valid photo ID, the firearm being certified (unloaded and secured in vehicle), and a new background check. If the the background check comes back clear, two certificates per firearm will be issued. The cost is $20 for the first firearm and $5 for each additional firearm.”

Boulder’s ban includes:

1.) All semi-automatic center-fire rifles that have the ability to accept a detachable magazine and have a pistol grip, telescoping stock, or off hand stabilization feature.

2.) All semi-automatic center-fire pistols that have the ability to accept a detachable magazine other than in the pistol grip or has any other secondary stabilization feature.

3.) All semi-automatic shotguns that have the ability to accept a detachable magazine, or have a fixed magazine over 5 rounds, or have any secondary stabilization features.

Read the “assault weapons” ban ordinance in it’s entirety here.

And read the bump stock/magazine ban ordinance here.