WEED- A poem

WEED- A poem….by Mickey Martin

Master of the universe
Resinous flowers make me smile
So misunderstood and troublesome
Burning bush. How can plants create so much pain?
Understanding the future has never made the past make sense
So much work to do to restore order to the universe
Big magnet and persistence
When the job is done no one will remember how it got done
And that will be just fine by me
Freedom is boring in a good way
Smoke weed. Be a good person. Don’t give a fuck.

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I like weed and I am a good person.

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Ending cannabis prohibition can happen; and it can happen sooner than any of us think.

While we have seen great progress over the past months, there is still a lot of work to do to push this thing over the edge to its imminent death. The work begins with you and this simple message:

I LIKE WEED AND I AM A GOOD PERSON

If every person who enjoyed cannabis has the courage to stand up and be accounted for, we can end this thing. If we combat lies and misinformation with the real truth, that people like me and you like weed and we are good people who do not deserve to be treated like criminals or lesser citizens, we can end the madness.

Have that conversation. You will be surprised at the response.

Unfortunately, we live in a society that has spent the last four plus decades demonizing people who smoke weed, and more so, locking them up. A lot of people still live in that world. Many people have bought into the lies and automatically treat cannabis users like misfits and outlaws.

But when we stop them in their tracks and look them right in the eye and say “I LIKE WEED AND I AM A GOOD PERSON” they fold. They cannot argue with that. It is hard for a person to look another person in the eye and judge them for their weed use. People make broad generalizations, but when they have to equate their argument with a real person standing in front of them, they become cowards.

I do not care who it is. Talk to everyone. Let them know. We are here and we are not going anywhere. We do not deserve to have our car searched, or our kids taken, or lose our job, or be treated like lesser people for our choice to use weed. Tell your friends, family, the person in line at the grocery store, or even the moms on your kid’s soccer team….”I SMOKE WEED AND I AM A GOOD PERSON.”

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You will be amazed at the response.

Where we have failed is that we have allowed our fear of being treated differently, or arrested, to silence us. We have allowed the prohibitionists to run wild for so long with their tales of crime and addiction that we have lost the argument. When we do not stand up and call bullshit on these lies they fester and infect the dialogue of our population.

You hear it all the time….People are still wandering around talking about “the gateway theory” or painting stoners as “lazy and incompetent.” When the truth is WE ARE EVERYONE. We are your friends, neighbors, co-workers, and the person who makes your coffee in the morning. Most of us are extremely productive and GOOD PEOPLE.

You have nothing to be ashamed of ANY TIME EVER. If a person wants to think less of you because of your weed use then they are simply an inferior and misinformed human. It is sad, but it happens.

Most of these hypocrites are boozers who have no problem tying on an alcohol buzz and becoming a totally different person. They have been fooled into believing that since their drug of choice is legal that it is somehow better. What a bunch of idiots.

Alcohol kills people….LOTS of them. It causes people to neglect their relationships and make terrible decisions. It always amazes me when some half-drunk person begins talking about the evils of weed. That is when I look them in the eye and say “I like weed and I am a good person.” It causes them to reflect and think.

I am a good person. I have a good job, I work hard, I am a good father, and I handle my responsibilities. It is hard to argue that weed makes me any less of a good person.

In fact, it is easy for me to see how the calm and relaxing feeling that cannabis provides me actually makes me a better person. It is easy for me to look a person in the eye with confidence and let them know that I demand respect as a weedhead.

The days of being scared and ashamed are over. It is time for us to stand up and shine. We are right and they are wrong. We like weed and we are good people. We will no longer be kicked around and treated like crap. Society is behind us. we are winning.

So do me a favor….Take the message far and wide. Have the courage to have the conversation. Be that voice of reason and use your personal identity to support the cause. People know you, and they like you. If they all knew good people like you smoked weed they would be less inclined to hold onto their antiquated views from yesterday.

It is simple…..Say these words to whoever will listen and watch the world change before your eyes.

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Come check out the #MCKF in Boston, Lowell and Dartmouth Mass!

Massachusetts Cannabis Knowledge Forum announces 3 Events to Inform and Educate about Cannabis and Developing Mass. Marijuana Industry

Check out our radio advertising! We had to go all activist on Clear Channel to get them to run it!

BOSTON, Mass., Aug. 21, 2013 — Three informational events across the state with the cannabis industry’s best and brightest will be hosted by the Massachusetts Cannabis Knowledge Forum (MCKF) in association with the Northeastern Institute of Cannabis on Sept. 28-29 in Boston, Lowell and Dartmouth.

Ed Rosenthal

BOSTON, Mass., Aug. 21, 2013 (SEND2PRESS NEWSWIRE) — Three informational events across the state with the cannabis industry’s best and brightest will be hosted by the Massachusetts Cannabis Knowledge Forum (MCKF) in association with the Northeastern Institute of Cannabis on Sept. 28-29, 2013 in Boston, Lowell and Dartmouth.

Goal of these events:
* To provide education and training to potential dispensary applicants, employees, and patients;
* To hold an interactive forum for people to learn more about the cannabis industry and how the application and regulatory processes will be implemented;
* To develop a strong activist community;
* To celebrate the overwhelming support of 63 percent of Mass residents who voted YES for medical cannabis.

WHAT: A series of three events being held in Boston, Lowell and Dartmouth that will bring the industry to Massachusetts for an informative event. The speakers have nearly 100 years in experience to share. The event will cover the regulatory model and competitive application process, including presentations on best practices, quality assurance, production/cultivation methods, legal/social/political environment, and coalition building. Segments will be interactive, allowing people to communicate directly with the speakers.

Each event will be unique because it will be guided by the questions and. Attendees will receive a copy of “Medical Marijuana 101,” the “Marijuana Grower’s Handbook,” “Aunt Sandy’s Medical Marijuana Cookbook,” and course binder with materials on the application/regulations/best practices.

WHO: The MCKF is proud to present industry leading authors, consultants, business operators, and researchers to provide three days of informational access to the business.

Ed Rosenthal has been writing about cannabis cultivation for over four decades and is the world’s leading expert in the field. Ed has sold over a million books, and his book the “Marijuana Grower’s Handbook” has revolutionized the field.

Mickey Martin, author of “Medical Marijuana 101,” and an expert in the competitive application process, will give attendees a breakdown on best practices, regulations, and the entire application process.

Founder of Steep Hill Labs, Addison Demoura, will present on quality assurance and discuss the latest technology being used to help people better understand cannabis medicines.

Dr. Keith Saunders, Ph.D. is a sociologist and host of the Boston Pot Report who will educate people on the evolution of cannabis in Mass. over the years, and discuss the positives and negatives of the proposed industry. The event will conclude with speakers being joined by local activists to discuss community building and cooperative response to issues.

WHEN and WHERE: Three dates. Three locations across the state.
* Saturday, September 28, 2013 in Boston, Mass. at the Seaport World Trade Center Auditorium;
* Sunday, September 29 in Lowell, Mass. at the UMASS Lowell Inn and Conference Center;
* Monday, September 30 in Dartmouth, Mass. at Rachel’s Lakeside Event Center.

WHY: To inform and educate the community about cannabis and the developing marijuana industry.

For more information, contact Mickey Martin 508-289-1779 or email cannabisknowledgeforum@gmail.com – or visit: http://www.CannabisKnowledgeForum.com/ .

INTERVIEW A CANNABIS OUTLAW. MASSACHUSETSS CANNABIS KNOWLEDGE FORUM.

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Have you ever wondered what it is like to wake up to Federal officers swarming your home because you provided cannabis to sick people? Do you want to know what it is like to realize that your medical cannabis company has been raided and is on every major news network in America? Are you interested in understanding how cannabis intolerance affects families and their children?

Our panel of experts not only has nearly 100 years of experience directly working with cannabis, and they have the scars to prove it. They are true-to-life cannabis outlaws.

The “Guru of Ganja,” Ed Rosenthal, was one of the first people to be raided and charged in Federal court for providing medical cannabis. His landmark case propelled the cannabis movement into the mainstream and his story was heavily covered nationally. Ed became the poster boy for the battle between the Feds and states with medical cannabis laws.

Mickey Martin ran a company called Tainted Inc. that made medical cannabis foods for patients in California. His company was raided and he was charged with several felonies. At his sentencing, the Judge noted that he was not motivated by profit and believed he was providing a service to sick people, and sentenced him to two years of community confinement.

Addison Demoura operated a dispensary in Oakdale, Calif. and was raided by intolerant local authorities in Stanislaus County. During the raid officers traumatized his wife and children, and charged him with several felonies for operating his dispensary. After finding officers left out important information when requesting the search warrants the case was dropped and Addison Demoura successfully sued the local authorities for damages.

DO YOU WANT TO INTERVIEW ONE OF OUR CANNABIS OUTLAWS?

Our speakers are making themselves available to all media from now until the event to do interviews. Their colorful and interesting stories make for a great special interest piece and their interviews always provide good information for readers, viewers, and listeners. To set up and interview with one or all of our speakers feel free to contact us by phone or email. Thanks.

* PHOTO: http://cannabisknowledgeforum.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/Ed-Rosenthal-in-greenhouse_high_res.jpg

* Photo Caption: Ed Rosenthal in greenhouse.

NEWS SOURCE: Massachusetts Cannabis Knowledge Forum

For more information regarding this press release, please visit:
http://www.CannabisKnowledgeForum.com/
 

The Art of the Sellout

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Welcome to the show, kid. You have made it……or have you?

We are seeing the industry move in strange directions these days. There are a million little weed growers and producers looking for their shot at the title, and they are ready to do what it takes to succeed. But most do not have the time, energy, or resources to build something great from the ground up. Most are looking for that quick ride to the top, and are willing to sell out who they are, and what they stand for, in an effort to appease the overlords who are really running their game.

Seems like a new sucker joins the Legion of the Doomed every day. Some bozo in a clown suit with an idea and a bag of goods takes the walk down sellout street, and we are all supposed to pretend like nothing happens. You have seen it….You may or may not have noticed; but it is there.

Notice that the once robust and colorful person is now taking muted and safe positions to protect the interests of those who they just sold out to. They disguise their rhetoric as seemingly normal conversation, but there is always an underlying commercial there. The real sellout is always selling. You can’t miss it. They will do everything in their power to have you believe they are legit, but will constantly flood the airwaves with the “me, me, me…look at my stuff” bullshit. It is so transparently obvious what has happened that only they cannot see it.

Some folks are good with being a sellout. They lack the ability to stand on their own two feet anyways, so it is easier for them to take their marching orders from those who have “invested” in them. There is nothing wrong with that, if that is your thing. But let’s not pretend like we are some shot caller, when really your shots have been called by others for a quick minute.

But most sellouts have a hard time swallowing the fact that they sold out. They try to hide it and pretend like they are not being directed by forces outside of their control. They pretend that it was their idea to “quit being such an asshole” or to quit posting pictures of themselves dabbing the fuck out. There is always some explanation of being all growed up, or some other worthless bullshit, to mask the fact that they got chewed out from the people writing their check.

It is okay, Mr. Sellout. Embrace that shit. Love your new position as the mouthpiece for those you work for, but quit trying to pass your retarded scripted bullshit off as some sort of genuine communication, and quit trying to interject your worthless babbling into every conversation to “get the word out,” as your masters have requested. We can all see right through that shit.

Just write the company’s name on your forehead and wear your branded polo shirt everywhere you go like a real sell out. Stop trying to still fit in. You cannot have it both ways. You are either a shill for the man, or you are not. You cannot be an undercover shill trying to maintain your position as some independent thinker when everytime you speak you have to watch what you say in order to not piss off the Bobs.

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You can see the shift a mile away. The only one who cannot see it is the sellout themselves. They have convinced themselves that their new found fortune is golden, and that no one else will notice their shift in rhetoric and behavior. They believe they have you fooled because they believe you are a sucker just like them.

Do us a favor…try to keep the bullshit to a minimum and quit using the affection we had for you at one time as a building block for your corporate adventures. We are smarter than you think.

As more real big money players come to the table and offer the world for folk’s loyalty and intellectual property, just watch the evolution happen. It might be subtle or it may be overt. Either way, it will be there. Everything comes with a price. Nothing is free. Your desire for the quick paycheck will cost you a little bit of yourself and the respect of your peers.

But don’t worry…you got that sweet one bedroom apartment and a steady check to keep you going. Life is sweet.

One cannot be surprised when their selling out results in people walking away. Not everyone wants to be in the commercial that is now your life. Take whatever chips you cashed in and go buy yourself some friends because the real folks who you used to know do not think you are the same person anymore. You have changed, and usually not for the better.

But who needs integrity and independence when you can have money anyways?

The Art of the Sellout….Coming to a hustler near you.

What the hell is a medical cannabis collective anyways?

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The term collective has been basically used to describe any and every cannabis business and group of growers here in California .

Grow a bunch of weed? You are a collective. Have a dispensary with 100,000 patients? You are a collective. Make edibles for 50 dispensaries? Yup…collective. Grow 20 plants in your backyard for you and your friends? You guessed it….it is a collective. Run a lab that tests samples from dispensing collectives? You might also be a collective. Cannabis farmer’s market? Still a collective. Growing 500 plants under ten 1000w lights in a gutted townhouse? You guessed it….a collective.

The term collective has become synonymous with cannabis business. There are a few groups who file their business as a “cooperative,” but because of paperwork requirements that come with the definition of cooperative, most cannabis businesses in California have dubbed themselves a collective.

So how the hell did we get here?

Simple…..bad law written in a time of fear and intolerance. Flashback to 2003 when the medical cannabis industry was still very new and there were very few dispensaries that made up the California landscape. Lawmakers were pressured to pass SB 420 in California to more clearly define the medical marijuana program here.

In enacting the bill it was the intent of the legislature to:

  • “clarify the scope of the application of the act and facilitate the prompt identification of qualified patients and their designated primary caregivers in order to avoid unnecessary arrest and prosecution of these individuals and provide needed guidance to law enforcement officers”
  • “promote uniform and consistent application of the act among the counties within the state”
  • “enhance the access of patients and caregivers to medical marijuana through collective, cooperative cultivation projects”
  • “address additional issues that were not included within the act, and that must be resolved in order to promote the fair and orderly implementation of the act”

The final guidelines were decided in a last-minute legislative deal by Attorney General Lockyer and Sen. John Vasconcellos in order to get the bill passed.

The reality is that the term “collective” was inserted in as a compromise to supposedly allow for bigger garden projects, and to allow patients to work together to produce their medicine. Because the term “collective” has no defined meaning in California state law, our industry has been able to use the loosely worded terminology to build a robust program out of the gray areas. It is now being used to question the validity of the entire industry.

In 2008, then Attorney General for the State, Jerry Brown, released the Attorney General Guidelines for the Security and Non-Diversion of Cannabis grown for Medical Use. These guidelines were meant to further clarify the program, but were non-binding and largely ignored in real life. But even the Attorney General had a tough time with the term “collective. Here is what he wrote in the guidelines:

Collectives: California law does not define collectives, but the dictionary  defines them as “a business, farm, etc., jointly owned and operated by the members  of a group.” (Random House Unabridged Dictionary; Random House, Inc. © 2006.) Applying this definition, a collective should be an organization that merely facilitates the collaborative efforts of patient and caregiver members – including the allocation of costs and revenues. As such, a collective is not a statutory entity, but as a practical matter it might have to organize as some form of business to carry out its activities. The collective should not purchase marijuana from, or sell to, non-members; instead, it should only provide a means for facilitating or coordinating transactions between members.

That is right….The AG went to a Random House Dictionary to define collective. Sounds legit?

But the same gray area that we have used to build an industry out of thin air is now coming back to bite us in the ass. Law enforcement and opposing public officials continue to question the legitimacy of cannabis-based businesses definition of “collective.” One court case after another attempts to clarify the meaning of collective, but what has resulted is a series of overlapping and often conflicting case laws that do not protect the collective, or support law enforcement positions. It seems to become more vague with every ruling.

Which brings us to our current conundrum.

California is proposing a regulatory model in the State legislature (AB 604) that will likely remove the term “collective” from the books, and replace it with a system of licensed business models for producers and dispensers of medical cannabis. I will admit, I was a little taken back at first because the term “collective” has been a part of the California lexicon for a long time, and virtually everyone hides behind this moniker.

Here is what the bill does to remove it:

Section 11362.775 will be repealed 90 days after the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control posts a notice on its Internet Web site… this is the section:

11362.775.

(a)  Qualified patients, persons with valid identification cards, and the designated primary caregivers of qualified patients and persons with identification cards, who associate within the State of California in order collectively or cooperatively to cultivate marijuana for medical purposes, shall not solely on the basis of that fact be subject to state criminal sanctions under Section 11357, 11358, 11359, 11360, 11366, 11366.5, or 11570.

(b) This section shall remain in effect only until 90 days after the Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control posts a notice on its Internet Web site that it began accepting applications for mandatory commercial registration pursuant to Article 3 (commencing with Section 26040) of Chapter 18 of Division 9 of the Business and Professions Code, and as of that date is repealed.

A kneejerk reaction will make you think “My God. They are taking something away from us! No. Stop. Please don’t.”

But then I started to think about it and my thought is that the term “collectives,” as it is used now, needs to die an honorable death.

I hear the screams from the nutjobs now. “But Mickey…..patients need the right to cultivate collectively as a group to produce low cost medicine.”

Okay. So who ever said they couldn’t?

Proposition 215 grants immunity from prosecution for patients who cultivate. It says:

   (d) Section 11357, relating to the possession of marijuana, and Section 11358, relating to the cultivation of marijuana, shall not apply to a patient, or to a patient’s primary caregiver, who possesses or cultivates marijuana for the personal medical purposes of the patient upon the written or oral recommendation or approval of a physician. 

Nowhere in the law does it say that you must cultivate by yourself. So if a true patient oriented collective is in operation…say 5 patients have come together to grow a garden, what in the law says that they cannot do that if the “collective” language was removed from SB 420? Where does the California law not allow for more than one qualified patient or caregiver to garden together?

It doesn’t.

The screams you will hear are from people who currently operate a business disguised as a collective and who turn a decent profit for producing cannabis in a non-regulated market. Folks who abhor the idea of a regulated system with clear boundaries and rules are those who are getting by making their money in the gray area of the law. I feel their  pain…..not.

As a person who has invested a lot into above board business practices and self-regulation, I welcome a more clearly defined system for production and distribution of cannabis. I want to know what the rules are and how to play by them, so that I do not invest a lot into a model that is deemed illegal because there is no clarification of what my “collective” is supposed to do. Is an edible company a collective? Who the fuck knows any more? But I know I would like to know where I stand, and more so, that those competing with me in the market are held to the same standards for quality and professionalism as I am.

I am more than happy, as a commercial producer, to pay a yearly licensing fee and meet regulatory requirements for my cannabis business. I am tired of dancing around the collective issue and trying to fit my organization into the loose definition of a collective to make myself feel better. I would be MUCH more comfortable knowing the work I was doing was under a protected license from the State of California, and that just maybe the Feds would back up off of their random prosecutions.

I do not see the removal of “collectives” as a threat to cooperative patient cultivation in any way. There is nothing in the law that outlaws multiple patients cultivating their gardens at the same location. It is a myth that the term “collective” protects this scenario.

What it does attempt to protect is the current system of unlicensed and unregulated producers, which I believe will be better served by a real system of regulation and licensing. If you want to run a business that sells cannabis to patients then get a professional facility and a license to do your work that does not leave so much up to interpretation of the law.

Otherwise, just be an outlaw and do your thing on the black market. Those of us looking to legitimize the industry and return cannabis to its rightful place in society understand the need for regulations and boundaries in our work. We do not fear it. We welcome it. The state can come inspect my facility today if they want. We are ready for them. We have already regulated ourselves far more than the state will ever do.

But it is easy to see how those operating outside of the norms of proper regulation, but just enough within the loose definition of “collective” to feel legal, will have a problem with the future should California pass AB 604. Yeah…it is gonna be tough to steal power and grow a ton of herb in your garage with dangerous pesticides and no standards of production. Sorry.

I suggest you take the money from your next crop and invest in your business for once instead of new rims for your giant pick-up truck this year. Begin preparing for the future because it is coming. Maybe not in AB 604 if the CA Legislature punts again, but it will come. No better time to realize that than now and begin evolving.

Or you can scream and yell about how awesome “collectives” are without really having a clue what the fuck that means.

I am happy to trade the vague definition of collective in for a license registered with the State. You should be too.

What the hell is a medical cannabis collective? It is confusing is what it is; and we should all welcome the end of the collective dance and the beginning of real business acknowledgement. Do not let the wingnuts convince you that we must keep the term collective to save some romantic understanding of yesterday. We do not.

Tomorrow is here and it is time for California to take the next step in defining and regulating the many different cannabis businesses that make up the industry for what they are….businesses. Anything less is unacceptable.

Paranoia Don't Kill My Vibe

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What is wrong with the cannabis movement?

We are literally watching cannabis prohibition die before our very eyes; but if you looked around you one would think that Richard Nixon just got re-elected. It is one of the strangest sights I have ever seen.

Last week the US Department of Justice and US Attorney General Eric Holder dropped THE most groundbreaking policy changes in the history of cannabis. They decided to stand down on challenging laws for adult use legalization measures in Colorado and Washington State, and handed down directives that spell out clearly the allowance for state run cannabis programs. I spell out these changes in a piece called “The world has changed. Act like it already” here.

This should be a time for celebration. It is a HUGE victory for cannabis freedom.

But the rhetoric we are hearing coming from prominent activists, reform organizations, and so-called leaders is anything but. For some reason, many in our community have decided to take the “Fuck this. We are screwed. They are setting us up,” position. It is the wildest thing I have ever seen.

First we have David Downs writing these terribly evidenced pieces in the East Bay Express and Smell the Truth blogs where he is trying to claim that US Attorney for the Northern District, Melinda Haag will “continue her crackdown despite the feds.”

What a load of shit. Downs usually does better work, but one can tell that there is a desperation for any story that can shed light on what this will really mean for our community. BUT LOOK AND READ WHAT WAS ACTUALLY STATED:

Lili Arauzhaase, speaking for the US Attorneys Office in the Northern District told us:

“At this time the US Attorney is not releasing any public statements. The office is evaluating the new guidelines and for the most part it appears that the cases that have been brought in this district are already in compliance with the guidelines. Therefore, we do not expect a significant change.”

So big D-Downs calls Haag’s office the day the memo comes out and gets this Lili person on the phone. Awesome. When he questions her about Haag’s response to the memo, she says “we are not releasing any public statements.” What that means is that there IS NO OFFICIAL STATEMENT FROM HAAG. That is pretty clear from the beginning there, right?

But the person goes on to defend her boss’ work, stating “…for the most part it appears that the cases that have been brought in this district are already in compliance with the guidelines. Therefore, we do not expect a significant change.”

Downs takes this and runs with it. “THE SKY IS FALLING! HAAG SAID SHE DID NOTHING WRONG AND THERE WILL BE NO CHANGES! THE SKY IS FALLING.” What a delightful story to splash across the blogosphere to get people to read your stuff.

The problem? It is not exactly what was said, nor is it anywhere near an official statement. It is a low level staffer trying to save face from a reporter looking for an angle.

And even what was said shows no backbone of confidence….last time I checked “for the most part” meant we have been wrong on some accounts and “no significant changes” meant that some changes were apparent. And remember, this is backpedaling minutes after the memo dropped in a non-official statement from the person answering the phones. Even this knee-jerk “we did nothing wrong unofficial statement” shows clues of change. In fact, it states there will be change, just not “significant,” whatever that means.

But I expect this type of hyperbole from David Downs. I love the guy, but at the end of the day he is a reporter and his job is to sell interest in his story. The more sensationalist one can make a piece the more hits it gets, and interest it draws, and more ads are sold. Pretty easy equation there.

He also fails to mention that each district will have to develop specific guidelines for their district and submit them to the USDOJ in Washington for review. Holder mentioned it in his historic statement on sentencing reform just two weeks before the cannabis memo stating:

This means that federal prosecutors cannot – and should not – bring every case or charge every defendant who stands accused of violating federal law.  Some issues are best handled at the state or local level.  And that’s why I have today directed the United States Attorney community to develop specific, locally-tailored guidelines – consistent with our national priorities – for determining when federal charges should be filed, and when they should not.

Maybe we should let Melinda Haag do her homework on this and develop specific guidelines before we rush to judgement based on some loose phone conversation with a peon, no?

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But the disappointing part is that Americans for Safe Access, the nation’s largest medical cannabis advocacy organization decided to jump in on THE SKY IS FALLING party and gin up some good old fashioned paranoia for their followers. Here is what ASA spokesperson Kris Hermes added to Downs piece to really send the community into a tailspin:

Kris Hermes, spokesperson for advocacy group Americans for Safe Access called the Haag office’s statement: “unsettling.”

There’s huge disconnect between national Justice Department policy and local U.S. Attorney practices, Hermes said. For example, Attorney General Eric Holder has told Congress that federal prosecutors were only going after medical marijuana operators who were also breaking state law.

“Of the hundreds of dispensaries that the Justice Dept. has shut down by way of threats to their landlords, in almost all of those cases, there was no violation of state law,” he said.

The cities of Berkeley and Oakland are suing to stop Ms. Haag from closing their permitted dispensaries. More than 50 California jurisdictions have regulated medical pot distribution.

“In San Francisco, if you look at the number of facilities that have been forced to close over the last year, none of them fit the criteria of the guidelines that have just been issued by the Justice Department. None of them,” Hermes said.

“I think we’re being sold a bill of goods and Haag is turning around and doing whatever she wants. The free rein the Justice Dept. has given its U.S. Attorneys has to be pulled in and Haag has to be forced to answer for her actions,” Hermes said.

So Kris Hermes, based on this loosely worded statement from a phone answering schlep given on the day of a new policy change, uses this as the basis to come out publicly and state “WE ARE BEING SOLD A BILL OF GOODS?” Really? This is how our leading advocacy organizations choose to respond to non-official statements from US Attorney staffers?

Seems a bit overblown and unnecessary from where I am sitting. Why rush to judgement? What does one gain by casting doubt on the policy shift on cannabis? Whatever could an organization gain by working to pump the breaks on the most groundbreaking reform ever to hit the cannabis community?

“We are being sold a bill of goods. You should donate more money for us to continue fighting this travesty” is what I hear.

But ASA is not alone. I have heard a number of prominent activists use terms like “cautious optimism.” Let me get right at that….

CAUTIOUS OPTIMISM IS STILL OPTIMISM. WHAT IS HAPPENING IN MANY REFORM CIRCLES IS NOT OPTIMISM AT ALL; BUT AN OVERT ATTEMPT TO UNDERMINE PROGRESS TO SAVE POSITION AND MAINTAIN SOME SEMBLANCE OF THE STATUS QUO TO PROTECT THEIR VERY EXISTENCE.

People see the writing on the wall, and understand it is just a matter of time before nobody needs to donate money to your weed reform group because the world has indeed changed. That can be a hard pill for many to swallow. Something they have dedicated their lives to is disappearing before their very eyes, and they are struggling to come to terms with that.

I fell for their loss…..not.

This is the game we all signed up for; at least I thought we did. Work our asses off to make weed legal and celebrate when we succeed. WE ARE SUCCEEDING.

Yet, in my life I have never been so depressed from interacting with the cannabis community. Instead of being excited that our justice Department is putting clear cannabis reform on the table and calling for a huge overhaul of the sentencing and prison programs, our community has decided to sound the alarms and call the whole thing a giant trap.

“We are being set up” and “Don’t fall for it” are pretty common catch phrases on Facebook and Twitter these days. It is almost like we have no idea what to do with a victory and choose to parlay any victory into a forgone defeat to appease our need for chaos and confusion. I am sure any enforcement action, even if it is some jackass sending a million pounds to Kansas or some shit, will be clear evidence that proves the paranoid losers point of view.

It is a shame to watch this sense of defeat and fear take over the dialogue in this movement at a time we should all be proud of our work and celebrating a historic victory.

I am not naive enough to think that everything will get better overnight; but things ARE getting better…and quickly too.

No…everyone was not let out of prison in the first week; and all lawsuits happening were not automatically dismissed. The world does not work like that unfortunately. But I am more hopeful now than I ever have been before that the beginning of the end is upon us.

I believe we will begin to see some released from prison near the holidays and I think we will see a significant drop in enforcement across the board. I think California will finally take up regulations for the industry this fall. I think state legislatures and initiative backers are accelerating their timelines and we will see more states come online for adult use cannabis and medical cannabis way before any 2016 BS. I believe we will see some cases dropped and others not prosecuted as vigorously. I think there will be REAL AND MEANINGFUL CHANGE.

“But we have heard it all before. It is just more lies,” says the paranoid weenie loser activist wannabe reformer.

No we haven’t. We have never heard this.

I am not sure what some folks stand to gain by automatically rejecting the olive leaf and publicly admonishing the most historic shift in cannabis policy in history; but I hope it works out for them. I hope that wandering around trying to convince people the sky is falling is good for their bottom line or their soul.

But to me you just look like a bunch of paranoid assholes trying to retard progress by stoking the fire of fear with your dumbass paranoia. Bitch don’t kill my vibe……please. Thanks.