The Twist in Nevada’s Gun and Marijuana Laws

As I clear out old notes,  I’ve found one I’d written October 19, 2009 after reading the following paragraph in the New York Times:

‘People who use marijuana for medical purposes and those who distribute it to them should not face federal prosecution, provided they act according to state law, the Justice Department said Monday in a directive with far-reaching political and legal implications.’

The Democratic parties planning is far greater, more advanced and long-term than most people can or even want to believe. The push to legalize cannabis has very little to do with over-regulation, state or personal rights or even medical care and everything to do with the Second Amendment.

In fact, both the legalization of marijuana and the right ‘to keep and bear arms,’ might be ushered in under all three area’s mentioned above. In the end, it will cross the threshold under state vs. federal law, with state rights winning out.

The sudden rush to destroy our current healthcare system is at the heart of this planning. By making healthcare unaffordable, more and more people will be seeking ways to self-medicate themselves to relieve their physical and emotional pain and discomfort.

Once healthcare is permanently crippled, more people will turn to ‘medical marijuana dispensaries,’ where the applicant, customer, patient must fill-out paperwork, thus registering as a marijuana user. Once their name is in ‘the system,’ it can be used to cross reference for anything, including gun purchases and applications for carry-concealed permits.

Not only can the state come in and separate a registered marijuana user from their firearms, this information can also be transmitted to the federal government for use. All it takes is one state enacting such a law, and soon others will follow, until the confiscation of guns and other weapons is happening in all 50 states.

There are those who say that ‘gun laws’ and ‘marijuana laws’ are separate issues. These are same people who claim that ‘state law’ and ‘federal law’ are separate issues, but unfortunately, the two often cross the line into the others domain.

In the end it must be remembered that an unarmed citizenry is exactly the kind of citizenry ripe for “fundamental transformation.”

Well, let’s time-hop to 2018 and the Nevada Department of Public and Behavioral Health’s website which has this to say, “The Medical Marijuana dispensaries of the State of Nevada are authorized to sell medical marijuana to card holders from the states above if the patient presents a State or local government-issued medical marijuana card.”

Then there’s the fact that in 2011 a Las Vegas medical marijuana patient challenged the law when a gun store refused to sell her a firearm, but the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in 2016 ruled that a federal government ban of gun sales to state-legal medical marijuana patients does not violate the Second Amendment. This has set-up a legal battle that’s more than likely heading for the supreme Court of the U.S.

President Trump recently indicated he’d support a congressional effort giving states autonomy over their marijuana laws. This comes on the heels of a bill introduced by Senators Republican Cory Gardner of Colorado, and Elizabeth Warren, a Massachusetts Democrat,  that would protect states that have legalized marijuana from federal interference.



For years I purposely didn’t talk about my military service. It seemed that every time I did, some smart-ass, wanna-be-tough would try to pick a fight with me.

Once, it was woman. She was mouthy, mouthy, mouthy and she wouldn’t let up with the haranguing.

She kept asking me, as tried to enjoy my beer, while sitting at the bar in the B and S Club in Crescent City, “So, Killer, how many deaths would take to end a war?”

“I would hope none,” I answered several times as politely and as calmly as possible. Still she wouldn’t let up.

“So if you don’t want to kill, why train to do it?”

“To prevent it from happening – a strong defense is an even stronger offense.”

“You’re so full of shit.”

“Yes, ma’am. Thank you for noticing,” I quipped without thinking. It set her off again and again she started in on me.

“So – how many lives would you say it should take to take to end a war?” she asked.

Without taking my eye’s off of her in the mirror, I answered, “One.”

She wrinkled her face and laughed, “One!? How’s that?”

Slowly, I got up from my stool, pulled out a ‘fiver’ from my trouser pocket to pay for my beer, “Keep the change,’ I offered the bartender, who refused my cash before I answered: “One — mine. If I could stop a war with one death, I’d die to end it. It’s what Marine’s do.”

She was speechless for about 15-seconds, jus’ enough time to walk around the pool table, out the door and into the night’s rain. I never again wore my uniform while at home.

Baked Alaskan

The bright red Sno-Cat crept its way carefully across the ice-covered landscape. Inside, two men, both experienced hunters, sat hoping to bag this seasons limit of one polar bear each.

It had been a four-hour trek before Jim saw the first possible sign of their quarry. He pointed out the faint tracks to Steve, who operated the vehicle.

They traveled another two-hundred yards before stopping for a closer look.

“That ain’t a bear track,” Steve stated, “Somethings off about it – like it’s walking on two legs or something.”

“You mean like Bigfoot or the Abdominal Snowman?” Jim smarted-off.

“No, I mean a Yeti or Sasquatch,” Steve joked in return.

The pair continued following the tracks up a slight rise, ending near a deep gash in the ice. They died swiftly, attacked before either could scream or fire a shot.

Ned hadn’t been as lonely as he figured he’d be, still he looked forward to getting home to his wife within the next few days. He’d been out hunting all week and it had been very successful.

He quietly hummed a folk-tune his father had taught him as a child, while stripping his last kill of its skin. As he did, Ned found himself still astonished at the pinkness of the fresh meat.

Once finished, he gathered up his bounty and set off in the direction of home. As he pushed through the blowing snow, into the darkness of the Alaskan bush, Ned continued to hum the little tune.

It had been nearly a day-and-a-half without word from the two hunters. Finally the decision came to send an aircraft up to find them.

It was slightly over an hour when the bush pilot requested that Alaska State Troopers be called as he had found the Snow-Cat and what remained of the hunters. It took a few hours more for a couple of troopers to arrive.

“It’s unlike anything I’ve ever seen,” the pilot told them.

They motored towards the area the pilot pointed out and within minutes they found the bloody scene. Quickly, they realized that all that remained were the men’s clothing, fully intact, covered in blood.

Within hours the area was crawling with all available officer from every state agency, searching for clues.

She was sitting at the kitchen table, willing herself to stop crying when she heard Ned push in the front door, stomping the snow from his large feet. Vivian quickly dabbed her eyes, hoping to mask the fact that she had been teary-eyed since her doctor’s visit earlier that day.

Ned rounded the corner, where Vivian met him. He immediately knew she’d been crying.

They hugged and kissed before he asked, “What’s wrong, honey?”

“I can’t have children,” she blurted out, “Allergies!”

“I’m sorry. I know how much you enjoy those little morsels.”

After a moment’s pause, “So how about some Baked Alaskan?” the Sasquatch offered while holding in his massive and hairy hand, the two hunters he’d bagged, filling this season’s limit.

A Lesson for a Nobel Prize Winner

Thanks once again to blogger ‘RayNotBradbury,’  and her prompt. Honest, I simply stopped by to read what she had written, when the little turd on the hamster wheel running my brain, got loose. When this happens, strange stuff leaks out and gets all over the Internet…

Fear has me and again I’m having a strange reaction to it. Fire-fights in BFE tend to do that. But this time, it’s different. My brain keeps reciting a short little ditty, that goes like this:

“I wish you were here,
In this hemisphere,
As I sit on the porch sipping a beer.”

For the hundredth time, it’s forced its way through my head and it’s annoying as hell.  So frigging annoying that I wanna yell at the asshole who wrote it, cursing:

“Fuck you, Joseph Brodsky.
Rhyming about a brewskie,
You damned prick, is pissing me off-skee.”

The Forced March Prayer

It was zero-dark-thirty and the entire base was seemingly up, prepping for a ‘Forced March.’  I’d been up a little while longer double checking my equipment, before having to head to the parade deck to start inspecting other’s rucks.

As I wrapped up third’s squads inspection, someone in the squad called for a prayer, asking me if I’d do the honors. I began with, “Lord hear our prayer…and ended it with, “If God be for me, who can be against me?”

Out of the darkness an anonymous voice boomed, “A pissed off Master Gunny.”

In unison, we all shouted, “Amen!”

Caffeinated Death

This morning he raced to the kitchen as he thought his coffee maker was dying. As it gurgled the last of the water through it’s filter and grounds, it sounded as if it were choking.

The last time this happened, he mistook the sound for the toilet bowl tank refilling. He ignored it until it was too late — he had no coffee that day and he wasn’t about to repeat the situation again.

The lesson here, if there must be one, is to listen and never assume. You must react, you must respond — even if what you’re hearing sounds familiar.

Tribute to a Book-Case

Six-feet long, roughly built, thickly painted in a shiny brown enamel and filled with books from encyclopedias and The Harvard Classics to Reader’s Digest’s condensed books to every paperback Louis L’Amour and Agatha Christy ever published, that book-case captivated much of my childhood. It also formed my delight in reading and my desire to become a writer.

My favorite, by far is Louis L’Amour, and I spent many a rainy, windy winter’s day with my nose tucked inside one of his novels. His story-telling allowed me to escape and develop my imagination and hunger for adventure.

At the time though, I didn’t know this. Also, what I didn’t know or understand until some years after his death, was that my father was a story-teller from the old school, meaning that unlike L’amour, he didn’t write his tall-tales down, but rather, enjoyed spinning yarns over and over, until he, himself, believed the stories he was telling.

For years, especially following his passing, when family would gather, all his stories became ‘lies,’ which he did do, but some of the things he shared with his ‘gift for gab’ can be nothing more than the work of a truly gifted raconteur. Where, when or how he came to this skill, I will never know.

When I was nine or so, I saw a photograph of Louis L’Amour as a young man. I remember being struck by how much he and my Grandpa Jack Olivera looked-a-like.

This led me to create a fantasy that Grandpa Jack was, in reality, Louis L’Amour. Further, I fantasized that one day, when I was old enough to keep his secret, Grandpa Jack would tell me all about his life as a writer and we’d have something besides my mom in common.

Because this was a fantasy, I never told anyone, fearing I’d get called a liar and punished for it. But I did devise a way to get the fantasy out of my head and into the ‘light of day,’ and that was by writing it down in story-form.

Unfortunately, that original story has long been lost, tossed out by my mom after I joined the service along with many other stories I wrote as a child. When I began to write at the age of nine, I was certain that the world would one day benefit from whatever I wrote, so saving every written scrap of paper was nearly as important as the writing itself.

While I mourned the loss of those ‘original’s’ for years after, I’ve since concluded that they probably were no more than a narrative than a real story. I’ve also learned that when an original is lost, the rewrite is generally the better of the two.

By the time I entered middle school, I’d long outgrown the fantasy of my Grandpa Jack being Louis L’Amour. And later, when in high school, after being kicked out of the house by mom for ‘behaving like an animal,’, that old book-case became a very close friend and life-saver.

She moved me into the garage turned ‘rumpus room,’ where I poured through our ‘library,’ reading nearly everything on the shelves. I had already read the encyclopedia set after being grounded for the entire summer to my bedroom for bad behavior in grade school.

And from time-to-time a new L’Amour or Christy paperback would show up in the case, and I’d find a reason to disappear (Mom called it ‘being anti-social’ and worried that I might be doing drugs,) to the ‘rumpus room,’ to read and write. Back then, I had access to an old manual typewriter that Dad had brought home from work.

The typewriter was given to him and Dad rarely used it. Me, however, I not only banged out ‘copy’ for the high school newspaper and wrote book reports and essays on it, I used it to teach myself to write like a ‘real author.’

Putting ‘real author’ in quotes is my way of saying, that to claim the actual title would have been a ‘lie.’ I would’ve been accused of ‘living in a fantasy world,’ which would have been true, but it would have taken on an entirely negative connotation, not out of meanness, but out of frustration as I had spent a lot of time there as a child.

One of the first items I ever wrote was a small piece of poetry and while I didn’t fully appreciate the intellectual creativity of poetry, and still don’t, I had heard ‘cowboy poetry’ spoken (Bruce Kiskaddon is a favorite) and it sparked my imagination. Beside, it is rhyming words to tell a story – how hard could it be?

Ha! I look back on my rhymes and see no meter and where I wrote open-verse, I see no story and my tenses are all wrong. So yes, I learned and in that learning I found it’s much more difficult than simply using ‘say’ and ‘day’ to end the first and third sentences of a verse.

Mom in her naturally over-zealous reaction to my leaving home, decided it would be best to help my brother transition from sharing a bedroom, to being alone, by removing all of my stuff. Granted, I’d been banished from sleeping there, but I did have all my clothing and much of my writings in that room.

Fortunately, for me, I did have some notebooks, journals, and a number of stories tucked in a drawer in a large metal work desk that occupied the space beneath the window that looked out at the front yard. Later, when my folks’ marriage dissolved, Mom cleaned the house of nearly everything, either selling it or giving it away, including the desk, which she emptied.

What she couldn’t pawn off to others or make money from, she put in trash bags for yje Wednesday morning collection. Happily, for me, the garbage service had not been paid and our service was in default so I saved all that I could, and still have much of it to this day.

All of this returns to a central point in my life. If it hadn’t been for a bookshelf filled with books, childhood fantasies, an active imagination, some bad adolescent behavior, and actively writing night-after-night, for good or bad, I wouldn’t be writing today.

And finally — Debbie — if by any chance you’re reading this, sorry we had to listen to hours of angry lecturing from both sets of parents about ‘where babies come from.’