(Bloomberg Business Week) An Oregon sheriff who lost a state legal battle to deny a concealed handgun license for a medical marijuana patient has decided to take his case to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Jackson County Sheriff Mike Winters has argued that issuing the license would violate federal law, specifically the Gun Control Act of 1968.
That argument was rejected by a trial court, the Oregon Court of Appeals and the Oregon Supreme Court in rulings that say state law on concealed handgun permits does not pre-empt federal law, the Mail Tribune reported Wednesday.
So far, the case has cost the county $13,000 in outside legal fees plus the equivalent of $20,000 in time spent by the county’s internal legal team.
Well, that’s OK, because Oregon governments are rolling in dough. Oh, wait, no, I guess we have a projected $1.7 billion shortfall in the state. Sure, $13,000 is a drop in that bucket, but when you’re dying of thirst, a drop shouldn’t be wasted. For instance, that $13,000 is about how much revenue Jackson County brought in from user fees for recreational trails and about how much the county will spend on a hydraulic truck conveyor attachment to help keep the county airport runways usable in the winter.
Also, consider that Jackson County legal professionals were spending $20,000 worth of time trying to take away 2nd Amendment rights from sick and disabled people. Meanwhile, according to the Jackson County Criminal Justice Fact Sheet, the county had one of the highest crime rates in the state, exceeds the state average in probationers needing supervision, exceeds the 75th percentile in crimes per police officer and cases per prosecutor, and seen a five-year decline in felony conviction rate. Could that time be better spent than on losing the same court case three times?
I’ve reached out to the National Rifle Association on this one. They always seem to get upset whenever the federal government wants to take someone’s guns. Here’s a perfect mix of 2nd Amendment and 10th Amendment that ought to make Charlton Heston* rise from the dead to knock some sense into the sheriff. Who wants to bet that since marijuana is involved, they won’t touch the issue with a ten foot musket?
*Do NOT mess with Zombie Charlton Heston! ”Double tap” won’t work and you can’t pry the gun from his cold dead hands.
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