Hemp protest begins in Washington D.C.
Right now, David Bronner, CEO of Dr. Bronner's Magic Soaps, is locked in a steel cage with 12 industrial hemp plants growing in soil at H St. and 16th St. NW Washington D.C. Bronner will harvest the plants, and press them for oil today in full view of the White House.
Bronner is a long time hemp advocate who imports several tons of Canadian hemp oil annually for use in his world famous all-natural hemp based soaps. Bronner has challenged Obama to prove that these plants are marijuana and have some drug value. Bronner asserts the plants have less than 0.3% THC, and have no potential for medicinal or recreational use.
The steel cage is meant to keep law enforcement from interfering with Bronner until he is able to harvest and press his hemp. Go Bronner Go! For a soap man, he's got guts. Here is what he has to say about the protest:
The industrial hemp plants I am harvesting and processing into oil cannot produce a high of any kind, but according to the Obama Administration I'm in possession of approximately 10 pounds of marijuana. President Obama's U.S. Attorney who handles drug cases in Washington D.C. will not be able to prove my hemp has any more drug value than a poppy seed bagel. The Obama position on hemp is not science-based or good for the U.S. economy. We've lobbied and campaigned for over a decade and feel abandoned by our President who as an Illinois state legislator voted twice for hemp cultivation. I expected more from President.
The President can simply direct the Department of Justice to respect industrial hemp grown pursuant to existing state hemp programs, such as North Dakota's. Everyone is sick and tired of America's bankrupt policy on hemp that forces our company to send well over a hundred thousand dollars every year to Canadian farmers. I had hoped that President Obama would not succumb to drug warriors' hysteria regarding hemp. I really don't know what else to do to get our 'Chief Law Enforcement Officer' to take a rational science-based approach to hemp policy in this country.
The protest is in response to a recent statement from the White House asserting there is no difference between industrial hemp and marijuana grown for medical or recreational use. Bronner has labratory results in the cage that confirm his plants have below 0.3% THC, which is the global maximum allowable THC to ensure the hemp has no drug value. As Bronner put it:
Industrial hemp is an agricultural crop grown on large farms in Canada, Europe, and China, which all prohibit marijuana cultivation and their police have no problem distinguishing agricultural hemp. Farmers in other countries are laughing all the way to the bank as the US is the biggest market on the planet for healthy hemp seed and fiber products with retail sales in 2011 of over $400 million. The US government should get out of the way and allow American farmers and producers to cultivate and capitalize on hemp's many product applications and markets.
Follow David Bronner's hemp civil disobedience from inside his steel cage at the White House http://www.ustream.tv/channel/hempaction. A second video feed from outside is available at http://www.ustream.tv/channel/hempaction2.