42-Year-Old Pot Conviction Stops 20-Year Army Veteran From Buying a Rifle
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Thread: 42-Year-Old Pot Conviction Stops 20-Year Army Veteran From Buying a Rifle

  1. #1
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    42-Year-Old Pot Conviction Stops 20-Year Army Veteran From Buying a Rifle

    42-Year-Old Pot Conviction Stops 20-Year Army Veteran From Buying a Rifle

    Jacob Sullum|Jul. 10, 2013 1:16 pm


    Ron Kelly, a 20-year Army veteran, recently tried to buy a .22-caliber rifle at the Wal-Mart in Tomball, Texas. He was turned awaybecause he failed the FBI background check. He appealed the rejection, and last month he got a Justice Department letter explaining that he was legally disqualified from owning guns, after handling them in defense of his country for two decades, because of a 42-year-old marijuana conviction. As a high school student in Durham, North Carolina, he had been caught with a small amount of pot and pleaded guilty to misdemeanor possession, receiving a sentence of probation because he was a first-time offender. The probation lasted a year, but according to the Justice Department the ensuing loss of Kelly's Second Amendment rights lasts a lifetime.
    "I am ashamed of the way my government has treated me," Kelly told The Houston Chronicle. "The government may have the greatest of intentions with the [law], but they messed it up."
    Kelly's disqualification may in fact be unjustified under current law, which bars gun sales to people convicted of felonies but not misdemeanors (except for misdemeanors involving domestic violence). Unless the feds are treating what North Carolina called a misdemeanor as a felony for some reason, Kelly's pot conviction should not be covered by that provision. The only other disqualifier that seems possibly relevant is the one for anybody who is "an unlawful user of or addicted to any controlled substance," but more than a 1971 conviction for possession should be required to demonstrate that Kelly falls into that category.
    Even if it turns out that Kelly is allowed to own a gun under current law, the case illustrates the folly of the absurdly broad criteria used to strip people of their constitutional right to keep and bear arms, since it clearly would be illegal to sell Kelly a gun if he still occasionally smoked pot, whether for medical or recreational purposes, or if he had been caught with enough marijuana to be charged with a felony four decades ago. "Better" background checks can only mean more injustices like this.
    Is this really right? After 42 years when he was in high school. What's your opinion on this.
    [Thanks to Allen St. Pierre for the tip.]
    42-Year-Old Pot Conviction Stops 20-Year Army Veteran From Buying a Rifle - Hit & Run : Reason.com


    ~Responsible people who understand that their personal protection is up to them, provide themselves with protection. Those that don't have only themselves to blame.~Proud NRA ~SAF~GoA Member~

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  3. #2
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    If Uncle Sam allowed to carry a rifle for 20 years, he should be able to own one now. I think he has earned that right after 20 years.
    "Educated men are as much superior to uneducated men as the living are to the dead."_Aristotle
    http://berkbru.wix.com/dstglv http://berkleybruce.blogspot.com/

  4. #3
    I think there is more to this story than is being reported. I'm sure the guy probably beat up his wife and got a DV conviction at some point in time, or he has more drug charges that he doesn't want to come clean about.

  5. Sounds incomplete... can not believe a 42 year ago misdemeanor for pot smoking would derail a rifle purchase to a 20 year vet.

  6. Just another small excuse to cause this honest citizen problems. What a wonderful Obama country it has become.

  7. #6
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    Oh well. Lesson learned: Don't smoke pot

  8. There isn't anyone of us on this site, that hasn't made a mistake in our lives. A person should not be judged by any of us on this site. Being Ron is an 20 year Army Veteran should overrule an 42 year old pot conviction.

    Drugs are Drugs, I know more LEO's that are Prescribed Pain Medication, and take Meds while on Duty. Is that Wrong? Do you want an LEO on Pain Meds responding to your home while having access to a vast amount of weapons at his/her disposal.

    But as long as they are prescribed to them it makes it OK. I think not!! I know one officer who arrested a neighbor of mine because she was under the influence of Hydrocodone that was prescribed to her. While operating a motor vehicle. When he himself was under the influence of the same medication for a shoulder injury while on duty, and operating his squad car.

    Double Standards, yes and that's what's wrong with our society today it's do as I say, not as I do. I hope Ron Kelly fights this, and wins his right to purchase , and bare arms. Ron to you, thank you for your service, and Sacrifice to all american citizens.

    Sent from my AT300SE using Tapatalk 4 Beta

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    Quote Originally Posted by usmeu25 View Post
    I hope Ron Kelly fights this, and wins his right to purchase , and bare arms.

    Sent from my AT300SE using Tapatalk 4 Beta
    I disagree. Nobody should have the right to traffic human body parts. He already has the right to roll up his sleeves.

  10. Good One !

    Sent from my AT300SE using Tapatalk 4 Beta

  11. #10
    I believe that is "intentional" .

    A friend and FFL , said he had two that were refused because they had a "warrant for their arrest" issued. Now, this is supposed to be a felony warrant and always has been. He & the person in both cases found, it was a "warrant" on a traffic ticket ..... that was actually in error because they had paid the fine but the County didn't get it taken out of the system, and it later .. due to passing the deadline ... automatically generated a warrant.

    When he and another couple of FFL's were talking, they had also experienced this. They question both NICS and the ATF that this applied only to felony warrants, and got a "dance" about it.

    Sounds like they are pushing things beyond what they are, and trying to make excuses to deny a check ..... with things that aren't prescribed to justify a denial.

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