If You Make Money Off Of The Marijuana Movement You Need To Give Back
I had a very unpleasant experience yesterday. I talked with a collective owner that I previously thought was genuinely fighting for the movement. Turns out I was wrong. I have been trying to network with collective owners, headshop owners, grow shop owners, and other cannabis business owners on the West Coast to try to build a database of people that are making money off of the marijuana movement. I am hoping that I can eventually start getting them to donate to the cause
I'm sad to report that I haven't been too successful. It's not for lack of effort I assure you. It's not for lack of a refined sales pitch, because the pitch should sell itself - you make money off of the marijuana movement, it can be taken away at any time, therefore you need to donate to the people that are trying to help you. If you don't want to donate out of the kindness of your heart, then do it out of your instinct to stay in business. I actually had a collective owner tell me yesterday that he has nothing to worry about, so he has never, and will never, donate to the marijuana movement. I'm still shocked.
When it comes to campaign contributions, I have seen some of the most backwards logic applied by cannabis business owners. If I owned a cannabis business that would benefit from marijuana reform in another state, I would jump at the opportunity. Again, if not out of the kindness of my heart, I would at least contribute to a campaign because it makes good business sense. There are a lot of companies in California and Colorado that would benefit from marijuana reform in their surrounding states. Yet I have seen cannabis business owners from both states scratch their heads when I ask them why they don't donate to Oregon to bring 'official' dispensaries here.
'Uh, but it's in Oregon, not Colorado' they will tell me. Well no sh#t Sherlock, and guess what would happen if dispensaries came to Oregon? A huge untapped market just opened up for your product or service. It's not that I have some uncanny ability to see the future. I just have the logical reasoning skills to point out the obvious. This isn't rocket science. I was once talking to a guy from California who said that he was hesitant to put his business name behind a campaign because he didn't want to alienate customers that might be pursuing other campaigns. I told him there's an easy solution - donate to all of the campaigns. If there's some that you don't agree with, then donate to an out of state campaign, such as in Oregon. It would eliminate any possible bad perceptions in state, and as I said before, it would be a smart business move.
I apologize if I sound like I'm ranting, but I'm really disgusted by some people. If it wasn't for the marijuana movement, NONE of what they have going for themselves would be happening. If you own a cannabis based business, and you have the obvious means to donate, you need to do so. You owe it to the movement, and at the very least, you owe it to yourself. Some collective owners have had the audacity to tell me that 'since we are non-profit, we can't really afford to make donations.' I always turn it around on them and say, 'well since you are non-profit, and 'donations' are flooding in all day long, that's all the more 'non-profit' money that you have laying around to donate to good causes right?'
P.S. - There are numerous cannabis businesses that DO donate. Please tell them thank you!