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Facing Arizona: I love this state but there are a couple of things I’m unhappy with

(KTAR News Photo/Sure Shot Photography)

Editor’s note: Facing Arizona is a series that will appear on KTAR.com and social media  — follow KTAR News on Instagram and Facebook for updates — highlighting unique and everyday people across our state and give you a glimpse into their lives.

I was born in Akron, Ohio. I have lived in Arizona since 1985. I love Arizona, and I am happy to call Phoenix my home.

However, just because I love this state doesn’t mean that there aren’t a couple things I am unhappy with. The biggest issue for me, at the moment, is the debate on medical marijuana, the continued stigma that surrounds cardholders and, with the recent ruling, the prohibition that I now face as a gun owner. As a MMC holder, I have experienced some bias. In some instances, I would say that I have been discriminated against.

Now, most of the time, I shrug it off but with the recent court ruling, I am no longer allowed to carry my firearm or purchase any additional firearms. It is now a felony for me to possess a firearm, in any way, at any time. To me this seems excessive.

The reason being that there is nothing that addresses the use of over the counter drugs, such as Nyquil or Robitussin, or prescribed, narcotic-style painkillers.

Either of which could severely impair the judgment of the person who is using/abusing them.

All in all, if a person can complete the necessary steps that are required to obtain a firearm, including a background check — and what should include mandatory safety classes, including mandatory gun preparedness classes with your firearm, as well as demonstrating a proficiency in holstering and carrying said firearm — then having your M.M.C. should not make you a prohibited possessor. Instead of using the stigma that surrounds the persons that are MMC holders, let’s talk about whether or not this person is a responsible member of society.

Does this person have a job? Does this person contribute to society and pay their taxes? Does this person have convictions involving violent crimes or other irresponsible actions?

Or, has this person demonstrated that they are a responsible, and contributing, member of society that has just chosen a different path than some people. Whatever that outcome may be, we definitely need to address the gun situation that is occurring in the nation today.

I am not claiming to have the right answer. With so many opinions on this topic, with so many emotions that are provoked when people attempt to have discussions about it, it will be an arduous task for the American people and the government to resolve. — Joshua

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