Now that two states have "legalized" marijuana, I feel no safer today than I did before (even though I live in one of those states). I do feel rest assured that my peers here are tolerant of a certain lifestyle choice. I feel no safer since I could still be a victim of circumstance just like what happened to me in Wyoming.
Whenever I advocate for marijuana rights, I hate being considered an activist; to me it's just plain common sense. When one inquires about the many travesties in life, alcohol can be found to be part the root cause, and that's legal!
Instead of an activist, I would like to consider myself more of a realist. We are not going to feed all the starving, nor fix any other fu**ed up scenario that is a cause, but we can end a failed drug war that has real casualties and implications on millions of American lives. As a realist, I believe we won't end racism, but we can sure dull its sharp sting by eradicating laws based off of racial propaganda that now affects all. I am not an activist; I'm a father, a husband, and son - A friend, a neighbor, a co-worker, an object of affection, a god damn fu**ing American citizen.
As an American, it's a shame that we have to fear our fellow countrymen; this can be undercover cops and/or bitter douche bags with vendettas. Not everyone is against marijuana; as a matter of fact, you can't judge a book by its cover. Marijuana crosses all boundaries; race, economic, and health condition - marijuana is medicine, it doesn't just help fight major disease but also tummy aches and insomnia, different strains for different folks.
I don't promote smoking and driving (which was what happened in my case), but I do promote cannabis and all I'm saying is there is a potential for somebody to get stopped for bogus reasons, and if said person happens to have a stinking pound in their trunk than there is probable cause. It's unfortunate that hard drugs don't emit the order pot does, that law enforcement officials feel they are doing the community a service by arresting cannabis users.
We've come along so far in my lifetime; more than I thought was even imaginable due to my distrust and lack of faith in the system, but medical marijuana has turned that around. Some activists want to polarize the issue by rejecting medical marijuana, but the truth is medical marijuana has created the conversation along with providing statistical support that the zombie apocalypse does not occur due to safe legal access to marijuana, it's as simple as that.
I started writing this with one thing in mind "What is the cause or movement?"- We each have our own term. Isn't it the same one that's been going on for years since the 60's? It just seems disconnected to me these days. Early on it was the likes of Keith Stroup, Tom Forcade, Steve Hager, and Jack Herer that started the question "Why is marijuana illegal?" They are the original voices for the legalization of marijuana, but legalizing marijuana means more than smoking a joint and buying Cheetos. Its freedom vs. incarceration, its grants and scholarships vs. ineligible, its innocent vs. not guilty, crime vs. a night cap, the war on drugs has done more harm than good.
The legalization of marijuana is choosing nature while still agreeing with science, morality, and capitalism. It's the integration of the free market with democracy, if done right. How many things in life that you know of that marijuana is the root cause of destruction? Accidents and bad nightlife choices are mostly alcohol induce (not saying stoners don't do stupid shit) but statistically marijuana isn't that bad and once legalized and legitimized, it might not even be a concern. When there's no temptation, generally there's no abuse that's why Germany has a lower alcoholism rate and Amsterdam a lower drug use rate.
Early in our American history during the civil rights era, many groups popped up supporting the individuals being wronged with legal and financial support, the only thing I see going on these days in support of marijuana front-line soldiers are law suits. I saw such a thing here in Washington when the City of Kent voted on a moratorium, Steve Sarich served the council papers stating the council was going against the will of Washington State voters. Now this is all well and good but to me this didn't help the dispensary owners at the time.
Dispensary owners aren't the only ones fighting alone. On my travels I met the owner of a head shop known as The Grateful Shed in Bozeman, Mt. When Montana first embarked on their medical journey the feds were hot to imprison and close all that they could. The Grateful Shed was raided for having marijuana posters in their back room. Let me say that again The Grateful Shed was raided for having marijuana posters in their back room. After a long and expensive trial The Grateful Shed proved to be justified and set different precedents in support of marijuana, they are still recovering from these expenses.
Now I'm not asking for us to subsidize people's lives as they battle the legal system but you would think an organization based off of lawyers could provide free legal aid to the likes of The Grateful Shed, NJ Weedman, Joe Grumbine, Chris Wiliams, Eddy Lepp, Marc Emery and RandyLeibenguth. Instead we support them with well wishes and lawsuits that do not support the individual. I think this is where things can change. I'm grateful for new organizations like SSDP and MMP but in the long run the farmers and wanna-be store front operators are being buried under legal mumbo jumbo.
I spoke to Joe Grumbine before he went to prison and he agrees with me that the revolution has been commercialized and broken. That's why he started The Human Solution. The Human Solution tries to help spread the word on jury nullification and tries to garner local court support for individuals facing trial. This isn't a complete solution, but it does more for the individual than suing any institution.
People are standing up for marijuana for their own self-interest which is fine, but if you make a profit off of this beautiful plant try and give a little back to those that brought it to you. People who never consider fighting for marijuana education have learned the hard way that it is medicine or that any criminal implication from this plant is not justice. I got excited when I-502 passed, merely for what it means about my state: That the moral majority have some sort of common sense in this perverse world where fucked up shit happens every day the re-legalization of marijuana and the lie it represents does more harm than good.
When the law passed my wife got mad at me because I started investigating on how I could get involved with the new marijuana industry. Looking into how I could make an honest living off of something I truly care and respect. I can't blame her for getting upset; I have an obsession with marijuana. If weed were legal this obsession probably would never exist for there would be no mass injustice.
Even though two states have legalized marijuana we have so much more work to do and ignorance to face. Personally I'm tired of being one of the usual suspects because I'm a dark brown smoker. I am not a criminal, I'm a father, a friend, a neighbor, an occasional writer, a daydreamer, that guy that lets you get into the lane when you're driving - I'm everything else but the bad guy criminal. The guys here have given me an outlet that has turned into a support group for marijuana reform, we are the people.
I encourage every single one of you to write one letter to our prisoners of war, to donate a dollar to awareness groups like NORML, SSDP, MMP or even donate to a project like Gone To Pot The Movie or any other any other pro-marijuana Kickstarter project. Marijuana is still illegal in 48 states where 2 grams might as well be 2 lbs, a marijuana conviction can still alter your lively hood and any other future prospects - this shit needs to end.
There are bits and pieces of enlightenment after the two states legalized it; when Randy Leibenguth went in for his trial he was not imprisoned like Chris Williams. Instead I was fortunate enough to talk to him after his trial and he had this to say "the judge even said he was disturbed with the difference between state and federal and it was hard for him to actually put any of us in jail due to the changing times. He said he did not want to regret putting people in jail for something that 4 to 5 years down the road maybe something that is accepted normally" Now judges are realizing incarcerating people for a plant is ridiculous.
Marijuana is medicine, natural medicine for adults and children; there are people with money interest that don't want you to treat yourself, to be thy own physician. Marijuana is medicine just like the pills big pharma sells, how does marijuana differ? It doesn't, simply put the fat cats of pharma and alcohol are afraid of competition. Marijuana extracts are good for treatments; they just don't want you to try and get to know yourself better. Better yet a chance to help yourself, help your family, help your children.
Even if you don't want to believe that marijuana fights cancer, if there was a chance why not listen to those that say their life has improved because of it, its only humane. If you ever lost a loved one from cancer you would know that you would try anything just for 5 more minutes with them, one more hug, one more anything to do with them. I wonder if my dad's end would've been better off if I was able to get him a joint. Cancer kills, not marijuana.
My present existence is based off of the essence of what is wrong with America, corporate cuts and lies, if I wasn't doing it there'd be someone else. Socio-pshychopath that's how I pay my bills and I'm not the only one. As a technician everything takes a certain amount of time, you can't squeeze blood out of a turnip but that's what I do, make money for "sober" people. We cut corners in quality to make money for our corporate masters and that's why I was against 502, I didn't want quality and Monsanto to take over my weed but I hope somehow to get involved with the new upcoming situation.
Maybe I am a hopeless hippie romantic but I do believe in the power of the plant over almost a hundred years of man made lies but we need to stop dissenting and hating upon one another. We all need to agree that cannabis is medicine but it's also recreational the whole thing is a conundrum but truth non-the-less. We are now in an era where cannabis is the responsible choice over booze but as humans we choose to have our escapes. It's human nature to want to be on another level.
Donate, debate, educate, doing what you can makes you an activist. I don't want to live in a world where gardeners and shop keepers are treated like pedophiles, rapist, murderers or any other piece of shit in society. When good men and women serve longer sentences (when they shouldn't be serving at all) than people that have kidnapped and violated others. In our society and country there should be a pecking order of wrongs and rights and marijuana isn't even in the same category as wrong. We are not criminals, we are patients, we are adults that choose a night smoke as a night cap, we are people who no longer believe in the man behind the curtain.