Listen to your heart. Not some other asshole who has skin in the game.

As election day approaches. we can be sure that a fair amount of people who are doing pretty well under the status quo will do their best to derail legalization and medical cannabis initiatives around the country. There are the obvious opposition groups…law enforcement, private prisons, the Justice Department, anti-drug crusader, Moms Mad About Something, drug rehabilitation folks, and the other normal “We Hate Weed” losers. These people we should see coming a mile away and should be exposed as the folks who profit from locking up good people for weed.

But the tricky and sneaky shit you need to worry about are the messages from within. There is sure to be the dispensary operator  or grower who is against legalization because he fears he cannot compete in a more open adult use market; and will use whatever influence he has over his “patients” to convince them that a vote for legalization is a vote against their medicine. Do me a favor. Kick this dude in the nuts for me.

You have no idea how many folks did this during Prop. 19 who were either shut down by the crackdown in California, or who now wish they had stood up for cannabis freedom. Many were mislead and lied to, and there are thousands of people who now kick themselves in the ass for allowing their dispensary, or grower, or mislead friend, talk them into voting against their best interests.

Do not let this happen again. This equation is EASY…If a person, or organization is truly for patients having MORE access to AFFORDABLE cannabis then legalization is a NO BRAINER.

Now, do not get me wrong here. I am not telling anyone how to vote. That is something each of us must do on our own, and that choice is yours to make. What I am telling you is to not let some other liar and charlatan mislead you into voting against your freedom to protect their own bottom line.

When you vote next Tuesday, if you live in a state that is voting on adult use cannabis or medical cannabis, there is one question you need to ask yourself…“Does this make like better for people who like weed?” That is the choice. The choice is NOT whether you agree with every last part of an initiative, or if you like the people who sponsored it. The question is much more simple…“Does this increase cannabis freedom?” 

If that answer is YES then it is very difficult to see how one that claims to love weed could vote against it. A vote against cannabis freedom is a vote FOR prohibition. Do not be a prohibitionist.

All choices are not that black and white of course ( I am looking at you Washington State); but at the end of the day, no matter how you vote, make sure YOUR VOTE is made from YOUR HEART, and not because another human that makes a buck off weed prohibition or medicalization fed you a line of crap.

Do the right thing on election day and vote FOR cannabis freedom. Move the ball down the field and let’s win this thing already.

Going for the Jugular

I smell blood in the water.

I cannot help but feeling we are very close to real cannabis reform in this country. I strongly believe that the house of cards of prohibition is set to fall. There is just too much of an overwhelming call for an end to the failed policies of locking people up for weed. There is an evolution happening in our communities where our fellow citizens are waking up to the fact that this shit is JUST NOT WORKING.

Our opposition continues its parade of lies and deception; but their bullshit begins to fall on deaf ears. People are beginning to see the man behind the curtain for what he is…a greedy bully willing to lock people up for decades for a safe and enjoyable plant. People are seeing that we now spend far more on imprisoning weedheads than we do on educating our kids or fixing our roads. There is not a sane person on this planet that thinks this stupid war on drugs is working; but the difference now is that more and more people are willing to stand up and say so. Our opposition is backpedalling and beginning to see the writing on the wall.

So now is the time for the KILL SHOT. Now is the time to go for the jugular and put these miserable prohibitionists out of their misery. Now is the time we need to build a cohesive machine that exposes these criminals and frauds for their war crimes against our own people. We do not need to dance around the subject any longer. It is right there, front and center. It is our job to take this increasing awareness and ensure that we get the message out there that what we do to people who smoke weed right now is downright evil.

This is an easy argument to make. We just have to commit to it.

It goes like this….

“Quit taking people to jail for weed. It is not working. We have 25% of the world’s prison population, but only have 5% of the actual population because we take mostly poor people to jail for weed every day. We are participating in a form of modern day slavery, where we employ armed gunmen to round up people for a safe, and very available plant and lock them in cages for sometimes decades performing labor for slave wages. Anyone who supports and participates in these activities condones these immoral actions, and should be treated no differently than those who bought and sold people to tend their plantations. Release the prisoners and end these evil policies NOW!”

Nobody likes to be viewed as supporting slavery. I know it seems harsh…but that is what it is. Plain and simple. We have allowed an out of control and privatized prison industrial complex to profit from taking people to jail for weed. It is no accident that weed and other drugs are more available than ever. How else could we lock so many people up for them.? It is a ruse and a con. We have been sold a bag of shit.

If we cannot make that message more loud and clear, then chances are we may miss our opportunity. Our community must come together and use what limited resources we have to take the kill shot. Keep hammering the message home. We are right. They are wrong. Weed is awesome.

If we can muster the juice to pull this thing off, weed will indeed be legal very soon. If we fumbledick around and continue to not say what we mean and try to convince everyone that the entire weedhead population is seriously ill, we should not be surprised if we see more decades of evil weed enforcement actions against our friends and family. I, personally, am sick of being worried about having my car searched, or my kids taken, or not being able to get a job, or going to prison for many years because I love weed so damn much.

Let that burn in your belly….and then do something about it.


Burnt Out. Fed Up. Exhausted. Not feeling it.

Sometimes it is hard to be a weed activist. Who knew that trying to get people to understand that weed is safe, enjoyable, and helpful, and that we should not take hundreds of thousands of people to jail for it, would be such an exhausting job.

But between fighting with law enforcement, reasoning with Joe Public, and trying to navigate the chaos that is cannabis reform these days, a person can become downright burnt out and fed up. Sometimes it can seem like the walls are closing in and nothing makes any sense at all. Any reasonable person would conclude that taking people to jail is stupid when presented with the facts; but we live in a world of lies and deception. That, in itself, is enough to drive anyone mad. Add to that that our movement lacks identity and inspiration on a lot of levels, and you can see how it is easy for a person to not be feeling it after a while.

So what do we do? How do we get up day-after-day knowing the deck is likely stacked against us, and continue to battle ignorance and hatred for our right to smoke weed?

Easy. Forget all the dumb stuff and focus on the fact that if we do not finish this thing, nobody will. We will continue to see our friends, neighbors, and families get locked up, lose their standing in the community, and have their rights constantly violated if we do not get off our butts and DO THE WORK.

Easier said than done right? I feel you.

Each of us are different people. What I do is try to breathe when I begin to feel overwhelmed. I sit quietly and envision victory and the day when this is all a terrible memory of when we used to lock people up for safe plants. I try to think of the many friends I have who are sitting in jail this day for weed and think about how petty my exhaustion must be compared to theirs. I reflect on where we have come from, where we are now, and where we want to go. I try to remove the noise from the equation and boil the fight down to simplified terms. I take pride in knowing that I am right and that our opposition is wrong. I think about ways that we can celebrate our victories and learn from our mistakes. Then I like to think about how crazy all of this is, and then I usually belly laugh uncontrollably for a few minutes.

It is a constant exercise in mental awareness to do what we do, even in the face of danger and apathy. The rank and file weed activist does not get awards, or even recognition, for their willingness to stand up and be accounted for this issue. The real weed activists do the little things, and offer themselves selflessly to the cause, because they know the cause is just and that their hard work can make a difference; and it does.

Do not ever think that your contribution is wasted or that you are not good enough. The only thing you need to understand is that this is not about any one of us, or any group of us…it is about a wonderful plant. It is about freedom. It is about justice. It is about basic human rights.

Your small piece of a larger puzzle is moving mountains. We are seeing real progress towards cannabis awareness and freedom like never before. What is bizarre is that we are seeing this effort from allies outside of the cannabis movement more and more. Public figures, celebrities, world leaders, and even the most right-wing righties are supporting cannabis freedom and ending the draconian policies of the drug war.

This is because of you…because of all of us. Because we have continued to move the conversation and make people understand that cannabis prohibition is a disaster. That is YOUR WORK.

As we continue to change the hearts and minds of people who have been lied to about weed for decades, we see a real shift in the way our society views cannabis. There is an adult conversation happening more openly, and that is a direct result of your work to create real and meaningful social change.

So while you are sure to get burnt out, fed up, exhausted, and will not always be feeling it, just know that we need you. Take a minute to regroup. Find your center. Look deep into your own heart and know that we have no choice but to finish this thing.

There is no longer time for half-measures. We all must stand up and make cannabis freedom a reality. We are our only hope.

As long as we stay more progressive than our ally Pat Robertson from the 700 Club, we should be just fine.

“I really believe we should treat marijuana the way we treat beverage alcohol,” Robertson told the newspaper. “If people can go into a liquor store and buy a bottle of alcohol and drink it at home legally, then why do we say that the use of this other substance is somehow criminal?”

Pat Robertson, 700 Club


Great ad from Yes On 64 and article from Just Say Now

Colorado Marijuana Legalization Amendment Leads 53% to 43%

By:  Friday October 26, 2012 7:59 am


Colorado’s Amendment 64, which would legalize marijuana and regulate it like alcohol, holds a ten point lead according to the latestPPP survey of the state. The poll finds 53 percent of likely voters plan to support the initiative, while only 43 percent plan to vote against it. This is the highest level of support for Amendment 64 found in any public polling in months.

PPP (10/23-25)
Amendment 64 is an amendment to the Colorado constitution concerning marijuana, and, in connection therewith, providing for the regulation of marijuana; permitting a person twenty-one years of age or older to consume or possess limited amounts of marijuana; providing for the licensing of cultivation facilities, product manufacturing facilities, testing facilities, and retail stores; permitting local governments to regulate or prohibit such facilities; requiring the general assembly to enact an excise tax to be levied upon wholesale sales of marijuana; requiring that the first $40 million in revenue raised annually by such tax be credited to the public school capital construction assistance fund; and requiring the general assembly to enact legislation governing the cultivation, processing, and sale of industrial hemp. If the election was today, would you vote or against Amendment 64?
For ……………………..53%
Undecided …………….. 5%

Unlike some other polls of the state, PPP used the actual ballot language in their question, which can be important for accuracy. There can be a noticeable variation in polling about the issue of marijuana legalization depending on the exact wording used. Having the question explicitly state that marijuana would be highly regulated, taxed, and age-restricted tends to make Americans more supportive of the idea of legalizing it.

The last time PPP asked about Amendment 64 in Colorado was at the beginning September. At the time it found 47 percent of likely voters support the ballot initiative while 38 percent opposed. Both the level of support and opposition have increased by roughly the same margin, which is good news for Amendment 64 since undecideds normally break against initiatives as election day gets closer.

While it is going to be extremely close, this poll is a solid indication that the voters of Colorado are likely to legalize marijuana this November. With less than two weeks until the election, every public poll released currently shows it with a small but real lead.

An open letter to all soccer moms and little league dads

How many of these little guys will get arrested for weed?

Dear Soccer Moms and Little League Dads,

I am writing you in hopes of having an honest an open discussion about weed. I have been looking at the recent polling for legalization measures on the ballot in Washington, oregon, and Colorado. I have been dismayed to see that my generation, 35-49 year old people, are polling at such low numbers. The only explanation is that this generation is knee deep in raising their children and are somehow worried that their kid will get weed if it is legalized.

For the record, weed is everywhere right now and easier to get than ever before. It is easier to get because it is illegal, and there are zero restrictions on who sells it to who when and where. That makes for easy access for your precious baby. Far easier than trying to score some booze or cigarettes. So let us lose the myth that somehow if you vote against legalization you will better protect your babies. You will NOT.

What you will do is vote to continue the status quo, where the criminal black market for weed creates more crime in your streets and create an underworld that could more easily suck your precious Jimmy in to a world of crime and punishment. Are you rich? Well, if you are not, then you should really worry. Why? Because poor people go to jail for weed at alarming rates. Your kid could be the next victim of a system designed to suck up the poor and disadvantaged in our society and put them in slave labor prisons for long mandatory sentences because they sold a little weed. heard that right. Your kid can go to prison for a decade for making a bad decision about weed. There, in his new privately-owned prison home, they will be subjected to violence and criminal behavior much worse than ever found selling weed out of the garage. They will be forced to do hard labor for 30 cents per hour and their privatized prison masters will see their stock prices rise by keeping your baby in prison for his “crimes.” If you do not think it can happen to you, or to your precious baby, you are naive and just not paying attention.

We have created a system designed to repress the most vulnerable in our society, and we have made health issues into hard crimes. Is that what you are voting to uphold by voting against legalizing weed? That is incredibly short-sighted and, well, STUPID.

I am begging you, Soccer Mom and Little League Dad, PULL YOUR HEAD OUTR OF YOUR ASSES! When you make your vote on election day either for or against weed, make that decision based on what is right for society and the good of our fellow man. Do not think that you have some moral obligation to “just say no” and continue this bullshit of locking up poor people at alarming rates.

You do realize that every penny spent on locking up non-violent drug offenders is money not spent on education infrastructure, and actual public safety, right? We have seen our economy ruined and budgets slashed, while we continue to lock up 5x the amount of people as the rest of the world. Let that set in…we have 25% of the world’s prison population but only 5% of the actual population. Does anyone see a major problem with that? You should.

It is no longer okay to assume that those folks will not be you, or your kids. Chances are they very well could be. So when you vote to continue to lock up people for weed, just remember, that could be your baby you are locking up for a safe, enjoyable, helpful, and mostly benign plant.

The good news is that you can still do the right thing. Vote yes for weed and no for prison. It is your duty as a citizen, as a human being, and as a parent. I am counting on you to make the right choice.

Sincerely, Weed Activist

Being Right vs. Playing Loose with the Facts

The good think about being weed activists is that we are on the right side of history. Our battle is just and the cause is a great one. It makes it easier to get up every day to fight this war on freedom knowing that in my heart that I am right, and our opposition is absolutely wrong on this issue. It is comforting. I imagine it is a lot what a super hero feels like.

But there are also a lot of unknown variables that we sometimes put forth as facts, which can detract from our message. We must be very careful about making certain claims, whether it be about what cannabis can cure (remember we are not doctors) or what this politician did or did not say,  if we fail to present factual evidence we lose credibility in the community. It is a fine line.

I thought is was interesting this week on the 60 minutes special entitled Will Colorado’s green rush last? when the host had to point out that the medical claims being made by the woman were “anecdotal” and not backed up by any studies. When she says that this type of cannabis will give you “no physical lethargy” that claim is just not true. I know plenty of folks who are very lethargic after using sativas. But this industry plays loose with the facts a lot, and because there is little oversight, many have gotten away with it unchecked. But that does not make it right, and it can make it a little dangerous when a person takes the advice of this young woman and uses this sativa before work, and then is unable to function properly.

We are right on the issue of weed. We do not need to make things up, or present anecdotal evidence as hard facts. It is okay for us to say, “Some people have found…” or that “patients with this affliction have had positive results with this…” But too often I hear cannabis activists making more definitive statements than I am comfortable with in regards to the miracles of cannabis. We run a grave risk of being seen as hucksters and charlatans in this respect and I think we do ourselves a huge disservice in the process.

So be right, but do not claim to be all-knowing and understanding of the cannabis plant based on some regurgitated information that you read on a website. Let’s not get our cart way out in front of the horse. We have the truth on our side….we have no need for embellishment. Cannabis is safe, enjoyable, and helpful. The war on cannabis freedom is a failure. Locking people up for weed is immoral. We have so many real and meaningful legs to stand on that we do not have to make claims that are not necessarily supported by facts.

Some in our movement could use some media training before taking their show on the road. It does us no good to get national coverage and have the narrator of the piece have to say “what this woman said is not necessarily true…” That creates doubt. We have enough doubt working against us. We can win this argument without playing loose with the facts. We are right. They are wrong.

Be a part of the Marijuana Majority project…

An exciting and hip new campaign to raise awareness and support for cannabis freedom is launching and it is very cool. The Marijuana Majority is aimed at compiling prominent people and organizations in the community that have made positive statements in regards to legalizing cannabis.

What is very cool is the ability to use social networking to influence other celebrities, politicians, groups, companies, and other folks that can help make a difference in this battle to add their voice to the increasing conversation to end cannabis prohibition. You can join thousands of other cannabis activists in working for social change by demanding accountability and support from the movers and shakers of the world. It is brilliant.

The group leading the charge is dynamic and are some of the finest young and energetic talent the cannabis movement has to offer. It is an all-star team of great activists that understand the issues facing our movement and I believe the project will be wildly successful. Some may challenge the purpose of this project and see it as superficial for one reason or another, but the truth is that the key to ending this thing is for us to make people understand that this is happening and good people who they like and agree with support ending cannabis prohibition.

By compiling a comprehensive list of supporters of our cause, while also creating a vehicle to reach more folks and get them on board, this group can create the dialogue needed to make the marijuana majority larger by the day. I look forward to the evolution of what I feel is a very important outreach medium for cannabis freedom.

Here is a press release from the group on the project:

Press Release: Marijuana Majority Launches!

Posted on 

CONTACT: Tom Angell – (202) 557-4979 or

New Website Tracks Politicians & Celebrities Who Support Legalizing Marijuana

Marijuana Reform Is An Increasingly Mainstream, Majority-Support Position

Site Lets Supporters Tweet Prominent People to Encourage Speaking Out

SAN FRANCISCO, CA — Just over two weeks before voters in three U.S. states decide on ballot measures to legalize marijuana, a new website launches on Monday that tracks prominent people and organizations speaking out in favor of changing marijuana laws. allows visitors to see just how mainstream this debate has become by viewing and sharing visually appealing lists of elected officials, actors, medical organizations and business leaders who support solutions like decriminalizing marijuana possession, allowing medical marijuana or legalizing and regulating marijuana sales for adult use.

In addition to tracking prominent people who have already spoken out, has a social component that lets individual supporters play a role in convincing even more opinion leaders to publicly say they favor reform. Visitors to the site will be able to easily send targeted tweets to celebrities and politicians with just a few clicks, encouraging them to speak out and join the Marijuana Majority. Among the initial “Get Out the Quote” targets are Ben Affleck, Mark Cuban, John Cusack, Van Jones, Bill Nye (“The Science Guy”), Shaquille O’Neal, Rihanna and Kanye West.

“At a time when polls show that a majority of Americans support legalizing marijuana and that mega-majorities support allowing medical marijuana or at least decriminalizing possession, it makes no sense whatsoever that so many national politicians look at this issue as some kind of dangerous third rail of politics,” said Tom Angell, founder and chairman of Marijuana Majority. “By allowing people to see in one place the prominent, respectable and numerous supporters of changing these laws, we hope to convince more elected officials that there’s political opportunity, and not political peril, in jumping on board the marijuana policy reform bandwagon.”

The site launches as national polls show — for the first time ever — that a majority of U.S. voters support legalizing and regulating marijuana like alcohol. Polling also indicates that voters in Colorado and Washington are poised to make history by voting to legalize marijuana on Election Day.

Aaron Houston, executive director of Students for Sensible Drug Policy and a Marijuana Majority board member, said, “Anyone who looks at the polls can plainly see that trends heavily favor the marijuana legalization movement. For a long time, young people have overwhelmingly supported replacing failed marijuana laws with a new approach. Savvy politicians who are looking to earn support should realize that a growing demographic wants them to speak out for marijuana reform, and that doing so can only help them at the ballot box.”

Marijuana Majority advisory board member Sean Dunagan, who served as a Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) intelligence analyst for 13 years, added, “Ending marijuana prohibition enjoys support from religious leaders like Pat Robertson, business leaders like David Koch, entertainers like Morgan Freeman, world leaders like Colombian president Juan Manuel Santos and — by the way — the majority of U.S. voters. No one who realizes that our failed marijuana laws cause tremendous violence and waste should be afraid to say so. The time to speak out and join the Marijuana Majority is now.”


Marijuana Majority exists to help people understand that replacing marijuana prohibition with solutions like legalization, decriminalization and medical marijuana are mainstream, majority-support positions, and that no one who supports reform should be afraid to say so.  More info at

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I am sorry you are sick, but I am in jail…

It seems that there is a portion of the cannabis movement that is okay with only sick people having access to cannabis. There is a “we must put the patients first BEFORE we work on ending prohibition completely” sentiment I have observed lately during debates over state initiatives.

I call BULLSHIT. Nothing could be further from the truth. We have been “fighting for patients rights” since way before 1995. We have put nearly all of the movement resources into advancing this concept for many years, and to our credit, we have done a good job of convincing most of America that sick people should have access to cannabis medicines.

But we have also done a poor job of putting forth a cannabis environment that is conducive to the real medical industry and its professionals. The “medical only” market we have created continues to come under intense scrutiny because from the outside looking in, it does not look like a medical situation at all. Most major media done on medical cannabis include a point (or many points) on the increasing skepticism of this growing industry. People just do not see fat blunts and “medical” cannabis cups as true to life medical applications of cannabis.

It is this giant lie we continue to tell ourselves so much that we have begun to believe it is true.

On one hand we have advocacy groups swearing up and down the country that this is all 100% legit medical use, while at the same time representatives of this very medical advocacy groups participate heavily in extremely recreational seeming events, and their staff and followers mock the medical uses of marijuana by consistently taking dosages far beyond any medical applications. These groups have no problem setting up their booth right next to a doctor who may be holding office hours at the local cannabis cup or Cypress Hill concert, but then want to look down their nose at these “recreational users” who are “screwing things up for real patients.”

Spare me the rhetoric. The unfortunate side effect of working so hard on medical only laws and policies is that we have not focused much time, energy, or resources on the real issue of cannabis prohibition….MASS INCARCERATION OF MOSTLY POOR PEOPLE.

Some folks have taken their self-righteous medical only stance so far as to say that they are not for adult use legalization because it could affect their rights as a medical patient. You know what makes a person really sick? PRISON. And not only does it make that person sick, it makes their entire family and everyone who ever cared about them sick too. When a young black youth is arrested for selling weed and gets a five-to-ten mandatory minimum sentence, not only does he risk real actual sickness from living in a dirty infested jail with limited healthcare, but he loses his life and standing in the community forever.

So while I understand that your rheumatoid arthritis is a bitch, just know that sitting in prison for weed is a much bigger bitch. We lock up poor people for weed at alarming rates in this country and terrorize people through unlawful search and seizures all in the name of prohibition. But do not worry, Mr. Medical Only Cannabis Activist…as long as you can have your weed, screw all of those folks, right?


If you are so selfish that you would sacrifice another human’s freedom and right to life to only save yourself and your rights to use cannabis, then you are just as selfish, greedy, and evil as the bastards who made these laws, and who continue to endforce them. If you have convinced yourself that you are so damn sick that it is okay to continue to feed our youth into a violent and dangerous prison system so as not to upset the gentle balance of your safe access then you a.) lack courage; and b.) are a major part of the problem.

Here is a reality check for many who use cannabis “medically.” Your use is not really medical at all…at least by the normal terms and standards of what is medical in this country. So before you go doubling down on your bullshit position, do me a favor…consider these questions:

Question one…In a medical only cannabis market, cannabis will eventually be prescribed by a doctor when medical rescheduling takes place. What medicines prescribed by a doctor on the market now are smoked? Did you come up with none? I did too.

Second question….What medicines prescribed by doctors are whole plant medicines? I came up with none. What did you get?

Third question….What medicines are prescribed where you can get as much as you want to use over any period of time? What medicine does a doctor tell you to roll up as fat of a portion as you want and smoke away? Oh yeah…there are no smoked medicines. Well what prescription do they tell you it is okay to use as much as makes you feel good and pass it around to your friends? Did you come up with none again? Me too…

Fourth question…Which prescribed medicine are you allowed to grow at your house? None again? Damn…

One more question….What medicine prescribed by a doctor allows them to write prescriptions with no oversight or scrutiny from the FDA and DEA? None again? Damn…

The point I am making is that most of these medical only crusaders do not understand that their use, as it currently stands, is NOT MEDICAL AT ALL. If we continue to fight for a more medical cannabis environment, while ignoring the horrors of mass incarceration because we believe this is a more palatable and winnable argument for our cause, then we are sure to end up painting ourselves into a corner we never wanted to be in in the first place. You will eventually get the old, “You guys said you wanted medical only marijuana. Well here you go. Enjoy your Satixex or go back to being a criminal.”

Some have tried to say that these are two different and separate issues. Nothing could be more patently wrong. The medical use of marijuana is NOT a separate issue from adult use legalization. True herbal cannabis will never be truly free as a medicine to use as people want until we realize adult use legalization. We will  see an out of control pharmaceutical industry find ways to influence lawmakers to limit the very definition of medical cannabis, and ensure that you can only buy cannabis medicines from them. If patients truly want real and meaningful access to herbal cannabis at much lower costs, then cannabis legalization for all is the ONLY ANSWER.

Some of you need to quit with the medical charades too. Nothing is sadder than a bunch of stoners faking back injuries and standing around talking about how sick they all are to justify them taking 20 fat dabs and eating a 500mg brownie. The jig is up. People do not believe you any more and you are making us all look bad. Even my brother with cancer who had three of his ribs removed does not pul the medical card as much as most of you.

And before all of the true-to-life medical cannabis patients who do suffer greatly jump down my throat for this piece, just know that it is the interference, noise, and chaos of this integrated quasi-legalization movement masquerading as some group of healers and alternative medicine experts that is really standing between you and the medical industry buying into the medical applications of cannabis.

I have spent the past year plus talking to cancer research doctors and oncologists at Stanford Medical Center. While all of them understand the medical benefits that their patients see from using cannabis, none want to be associated with the medical cannabis industry as it stands because they do not see the current situation as being medical at all in any way. So that is not me speaking…that is a team of some of the most qualified cancer researchers in the world.

The cannabis movement continues to bury its head in the sand and tries to believe that if they continue to repeat the same mantra over and over that somehow things will get better. Well, while we have provided limited protections for those in our society who can afford to pay a doctor to write them a note for weed, the fact is that over the past 15 years+, since Prop. 215 passed, MORE PEOPLE HAVE GONE TO PRISON FOR WEED…not less.

So while we may be winning the medical only battle (which I have shown will result in limited variety and availability to less and less qualified people as time goes on), WE ARE LOSING THE WAR ON CANNABIS FREEDOM. While we continue to divert huge portions of our movement’s resources to justifying the medical only approach, hundreds of thousands of poor, and mostly minority, people go to prison for weed every day.

Until we can step back and understand that we are not even asking for what we really want because we have been led to believe that we must “save the medical patients first” then we should not be surprised when what we get is a very limited medical market with people still going to prison for weed…A LOT. If we spent as much money and time exposing the tragedy of mass incarceration and the failed war on drugs as we have on trying to convince the world we are all very sick and that only 10 joints of the chronic-bubonic will save us, weed would be legal already.

This movement needs to re-prioritize its message ans its implementation of resources to be more effective in ending the war on cannabis. It is not a “do this first and we will get to that later” issue any more. LATER IS NOW. It has been damn near two decades since we began the big “we are all very sick” march towards legalization. Maybe it is time to switch gears, accept that people do not believe us any more, and begin to attack the tragic aberration that is the mass incarceration of our own people. WE CAN END THIS MADNESS…but we cannot until we begin to really ask for what we want…and more so..what we really need.

So while I am very sorry you are not feeling well, my friends are sitting in prison rotting away for weed right now. Their situation is MUCH MORE dire than yours. So when a person says “we have to save the patients first” remind them that by saving everyone, we save the patients; and we save the lives of thousands of good people being railroaded by a prison industrial complex gone bad. It is no longer okay to ignore the opportunity cost of not addressing the core issue of mass incarceration.

This is a fight we can win, and it begins with us demanding that they quit taking ALL people to jail for weed….not just the sick…and certainly not the “sick.”