Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell in Oregon For Gun Purchasers

By Habit 420

Oregon Cannabis Connection


In a recent ruling, the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a decision that medical marijuana patients could be considered “illegal drug users” even though they may be medical “patients” in their respective state. Gun owners are up in arms in these medical marijuana states and consider the decision discrimination at best, and outright violation of the 2nd Amendment under the U.S. Constitution, at worst.

But in Oregon, where every medical marijuana patient must register with the states Oregon Medical Marijuana Program (OMMP), there is no way for gun stores to check the OMMP system to see if a potential purchaser is a registered medical marijuana patient.

The reason is simple. The OMMP program is considered private medical information in Oregon and is controlled by the Oregon Department of Health, and gun store owners have no reason to know this sensitive, personal information. Under the OMMP program, outside access to the database is strictly limited to Law Enforcement and only when necessary.

A firearms purchaser must fill out a Firearms Transaction Record that is provided the U.S. Department of Justice. The form asks customers if they are “an unlawful user of, or addicted to, marijuana or any depressant, stimulant, narcotic drug, or any other controlled substance.” A gun store owner in Salem, Todd Koonce, told the Statesman Journal, “It wouldn’t come up in a gun sale, unless they admit to being a medical marijuana user…I think people are smarter than to tell something like that.”

Doug Raaf, who runs Gun Crafters Firearms & More, told the Statesman Journal, “They’re making us the police…I think it’s confusing.”


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Habit 420 is a Oregon Medical Marijuana Program participant for over ten years, a grower, and an activist. He believes cannabis has a unique place in our society and should be embraced for medical and adult use. To correspond with him, email him at

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