Illinois, Marijuana, and Guns

Image via CNBC, also covering the law change

Illinois followed the national trend and legalized recreational marijuana use with the New Year. But, as is still the question in all states with legal use… what about guns? Federally marijuana remains illegal. Now the FBI and DEA aren’t doing backflips to shut down in state operations and are just kind of in a holding pattern until it finally gets taken care of at the Federal level too. But it is still illegal.

The Illinois State Police have also issued ‘guidance’ on what they will do for legal residents who are FOID card holders since federally marijuana is still prohibited.

According to a Facebook post by the ISP, “The Illinois State Police will not revoke Firearm’s Owner’s Identification Cards based solely on a person’s legal use of adult use cannabis. Pursuant to both State and Federal law, a person who is addicted to or a habitual user of narcotics is not permitted to possess or use firearms.”

That isn’t what line says. The line on the 4473, question 11e, currently terms it, “Unlawful user of, or addicted to”, not a habitual user. That is a state interpretation from Illinois itself. It sounds like Illinois will be enforcing the Federal provision only if it is also in violation of the state provisions under the new Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act. This is, of course, within their prerogative and seems to be the unwritten interim agreement. But it isn’t the law.

A FOID card will be revoked by the ISP, “where it is demonstrated that an individual is addicted to or is a habitual user of cannabis.” It will also be revoked for those who violate certain provisions of the Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act, according to the ISP.

Like stated above, violations of the state rules will be considered most egregious while Federal rules will receive… acknowledgement is probably the best term for it. But the full book could still come down on anyone in violation of the statues so, Illinois be careful.

Keith Finch
Keith is the Editor-in-Chief of GAT Marketing Agency, Inc. A USMC Infantry Veteran and Small Arms and Artillery Technician, Keith covers the evolving training and technology from across the shooting industry. A Certified Instructor since 2009, he has taught concealed weapons courses in the West Michigan area in the years since and continues to pursue training and teaching opportunities as they arise.