I find it more than a little disturbing that the cannabis industry has continued to ignore the rights of the people they are trying to market their products to.
While Wall Street is flush with new money and new ticker symbols appearing on American stock exchanges, and new states opening the doors to “legalization”, you would think that someone out there would think it might be a good idea to first make sure the customers you serve will not be subject to police abuse.
However, in many states, even smaller “mom & pop” supported lobby organizations that have sprung up have not pushed for ending harassment, arrests and forfeitures against their potential customers.
For instance, Washington State passed the first medical cannabis legislation in 1979. Again in 1998, with adult use passing in 2012.
However, we still have no arrest and forfeiture protection for the majority of patients.
Adults are still harassed, imprisoned or getting their property seized for having more than an ounce or trying to grow their own.
Not a single bill has ever come out of the industry groups to fix this.
And that’s in a state that “legalized”.
Maybe those of you in the industry will take this more seriously now if you read it for yourself on NBC News, because you sure have been good at marginalizing, gaslighting and ridiculing your potential customers when we tell you this stuff.
But have they backed legislation to first end the Drug War abuse? Not to our knowledge. Considering Amazon is headquartered in our state, you’d think that might be a priority now that they have an eye on this market.
Customer satisfaction on this doesn’t end with the sale. It should begin with ending the Drug War on REAL PEOPLE FIRST.
STOP PUTTING THE CART BEFORE THE HORSE!
More stories of consumers getting harassed in the news lately:
“Nah, man, the government will never legalize drugs in America. The first reason they will never legalize drugs in America is because the government makes way too much money putting our brothers and sisters in fucking jail. That’s first of all. The second reason the government will never legalize drugs in America is because, God forbid, some brown people got wealthy. Can’t have that. ‘Cause drugs come from brown countries. We can’t have wealthy brown people. There are no wealthy black — or brown — people in America. We got some rich ones, we don’t got no fucking wealth. People go, ‘what’s the difference?’ Here’s the difference: Shaq is rich. The white man that signs his check is wealthy. ‘Here you go, Shaq! Go buy yourself a bouncing car! Bling-bling!’ I’m not talking ’bout rich, I’m talking ’bout wealth… One of the number one rules when it comes to acquiring wealth goes like this: The rule is, only the white man can profit from pain. So if you’re black or brown, you can make money in America, you can prosper in America, you can get rich in America, but whatever you decide to do, it better be positive. ‘Cause if one person is harmed, you will be destroyed… White man makes alcohol. Tastes great, I love it, you love it, we all love it. Kills motherfuckers every single day. Okay? Some of y’all ain’t even make it home tonight ’cause of alcohol… But it’s all right ’cause it’s all white. White man makes cigarettes, the most dangerous product known to man. Cigarettes are so fucking dangerous, it kills motherfuckers that don’t smoke… But it’s all right ’cause it’s all white. Could you imagine if the Philip Morris family was a bunch of jheri-curled niggers from Mississippi? Do you know how illegal a pack of cigarettes would be? You would get sixty years just for a carton of Newports!” –Chris Rock, from the 2004 HBO comedy special, “Never Scared”.
I can relate. I’ve been called “the Tiger Woods of science fiction” by Professor Sam E. Anderson (author of Black Holocaust for Beginners) as well as “the black Rod Serling” — not necessarily as flattery, but as dire warning, for as Serling himself once wisely said…
“Television, like its big sister, the motion picture, has been guilty of the sin of omission… Hungry for talent, desperate for the so-called ‘new face,’ constantly searching for a transfusion of new blood, it has overlooked a source of wondrous talent that resides under its nose. This is the Negro actor.” –The Twilight Zone Companion
“Overlooked” is an all too polite way of saying “passed over.”
I was asked to comment on systemic discrimination insofar as hemp/marijuana because I know for a fact it’s the case in science fiction/fantasy, so…
Let’s start with the basics: First, “white privilege” simply means the odds are on your side.
However harsh your lives may have been, Caucasians, the odds are, anyone resembling Halle Berry or Lenny Kravitz will have had it far, far worse and God help you if yo’ ass resembles Tracy Chapman or Yaphet Kotto (there’s also such a thing as “lightskinned privilege” amongst blacks).
Likewise, the term “black tax” is similar in meaning to “the glass ceiling,” whereby, again, the odds are you will have worked harder than your pale, male rivals in order to prevail.
Second, the price of liberty is eternal vigilance because history tends to repeat itself whenever it’s forgotten, so don’t, as in, do not wait for some “Age of Aquarius” moment whereby color will forever be barred from conversation.
If you’d never tell a survivor of World War II’s Jewish Holocaust to “let it go,” then refrain from telling that to African Americans. Silence slows (or halts) the solving of societal problems, and countless lives are on the line, so no one cares how embarrassing certain subjects are to discuss
In order words, black lives matter more than white feelings — so much more, it’s now become all-important to remember that merely being accused of racism is insignificant next to actually suffering from it.
Finally, Negrophobia is the fear of ethnic miscegenation (what accounts for, say, Obama looking more like his black parent than his white one) or of being surrounded by dark skinned Humans who’re (presumably) harboring revenge for past atrocities.
Negrophobia is in fact a form of criminal insanity (as I explain in my lectures, the Joker will kill over a joke, the Cracker will kill over a skin) whether or not it’s actually acted upon (in either event, its protected by the First Amendment just as the Flat Earth Society, the nonsense of Alex Jones, et cetera) and it manifests itself in a variety of ways.
In my case, Negrophobia assumes this form…
“[White supremacist Milo] Yiannopoulos bragged about how rudely he behaved to the ‘top execs’ and was as surprised as anyone when he landed a reportedly large advance of $250,000, according to The Hollywood Reporter, which broke news of the deal: ‘I met with top execs at Simon & Schuster earlier in the year and spent half an hour trying to shock them with lewd jokes and outrageous opinions. I thought they were goingto have me escorted from the building — but instead they offered me a wheelbarrow full of money.'” –Jenny Pierson, AlterNet, January 4th, 2017.
M E A N W H I L E . . .
“Because Saab Lofton’s A.D. is one of the most exciting books to emerge from a young black writer in years, its obscurity is all the more shameful.” –Tony Norman, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, December 16th, 1997
ALL THE MORE SHAMEFUL
“Lofton’s novel deserves a far broader audience than it has accumulated thus far.” –Darius James, New York Press, November 12th, 1997
DESERVES A FAR BROADER AUDIENCE
“It’s been hard to ignore the mounting evidence — the friends who were pushed out of jobs… even if they were eminently overqualified … Most of all, it’s the small moments of discrimination that are so insidious, they’re hard to pinpoint. In my career, I’ve been excluded from key projects that were given to white women… often made fun of and called ‘defensive’ and ‘difficult to work with’ by white men and women.” –Ruchika Tulshyan, The Seattle Times, September 20th, 2018
So a known enabler of the alt right tried to shock publishing executives with “lewd jokes” and was given “a wheelbarrow full of money” while my black ass is sleeping in the garage of a house with NO plumbing/electricity for the second winter in a row. The odds are, someone as pale skinned as Milo will be given quarter of a million dollar advances even as I’m constantly told to “tone it down” by the civility-obsessed. It’s the system’s fault; it’s bigger than any one man.
And there’s no, as in, less than negative zero reason to assume the hemp/marijuana dynamic is supposedly free of such irrational duplicity.
In anything, I’ve been informed recently of at least one phenomenon whites and blacks will perceive very differently: Cannabis start-ups employing former policemen as frequently as security firms?!
Presumably this sick practice is designed to “confer legitimacy” upon cannabis businesses; to “assuage community concerns” whenever new locations are opened, which sadly places white feelings over black lives once again…
“I’m bothered by the fact that the government’s current plan is to bar people with pot convictions from participating in the huge marijuana economy that is now emerging. We have the expertise. We know how to grow high-quality plants. We have the distribution networks. The government’s policy is unfair, punitive and discriminatory. If it really believed in amnesty*, it would let people with non-violent records for possession lead the way … The government has turned the pot economy over to the people who lost the drug war: the cops and politicians who were responsible for destroying so many lives by turning pot smokers into criminals. They’ve been given the keys to the vault. They’ll be profiting from the same activities they used to prosecute. The hypocrisy is staggering … Amnesty* is not enough. It should include an apology for ruining the lives of hundreds of thousands of people for no legitimate reason. They should be asking us to forgive them.” –Rosie Rowbotham, a former producer at CBC Radio, The Guardian (UK), June 6th, 2018
Rather turn the pot economy over to those “responsible for destroying so many lives” than turn it over to a bunch of niggers, huh?
Only the white man can profit from pain.
Saab Lofton was born in South Central Los Angeles, raised on the road as a “military brat” and graduated from Olympia, Washington’s Evergreen College. He’s also a cartoonist, an award-winning journalist as well as a novelist — in fact, his first novel (A.D., 1995, III Publishing) was endorsed by Professor Howard Zinn and it’s responsible for a Republican (Jon Hatchell from Alexandria, Virginia) becoming a socialist … As an “internet troll,” he personally led the charge to save Uganda’s LGBT community from certain death (thus saving half a million lives), fought past a fleet of libertarians in order to cattle prod the FCC into voting for net neutrality in 2015 and cyberstalked white supremacists since then until the Ku Klux Klan itself lost over fifty subsidiaries, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center … A documentary based on him — Saab Lofton: The Movie — is available on YouTube.
When is “WestNET” a government agency liable under the “Open Public Meetings Act”, which is State Law, RCW 42.30, and obligated to full disclosure by the Washington State Public Records Act, RCW 42.56? Or, when is “WestNET” a NON ENTITY that isn’t subject to any Washington State law?
It seems Kitsap County’s Prosecutor, Ione George, claims WestNet is both an agency and a non-entity. In a lawsuit between John Worthington v WestNet for ‘WestNET’s” violation of state law, George claims WestNet is NOT a government agency and is exempt from law because it “doesn’t exist”. But then, according records obtained by John Worthington, it appears that WestNET “is a government agency” when it comes to receiving money, disbursing money, cashing checks and filing records with the Auditors Office and Treasure’s office.
“WestNET” is an acronym for the “West Sound Narcotics Enforcement Team”, which comprises the Sheriffs offices of Kitsap, Bainbridge Island, Bremerton, Mason County, the National Guard Counter Drug Task Force. Naval Criminal Investigative Services and Port Orchard, Poulsbo, Shelton, and Washington State Patrol.
When “WestNet” raided the home of a drug suspect and confiscated this suspect’s property, which included 1500 marijuana plants, they alleged they talked to an informant who stated a guy named Big John was the suspect’s partner. WestNET determined Big John was the 5-5 John Worthington and allegedly called in the DEA to go raid “Big John Worthington.”
Worthington’s soon discovered the DEA guy was actually a federally cross designated Washington State Patrolman who took his grow light and 6 medical marijuana plants. Worthington filed suit in the state court for the acts of a state employee that enabled law enforcement to bypass the state medical marijuana law. That case was removed to federal court where Worthington’s case was dismissed pursuant to CR 12 B 6 because Judge Robart ruled the DEA was immune from state marijuana laws and could take his plants and grow light.
It was during that case Worthington found out the DEA refused the case and asked WestNET to conduct the raid and take pictures for future prosecutorial consideration. Worthington tried in vain to convince Judge Robart that it was actually WestNET that raided him but the task forces were able to convince Judge Robart that Worthington’s documents of the WestNET acts were not authentic.
At that time John Worthington was an advocate for medical marijuana as he was awaiting hip replacement for his badly damage hips. Mr. Worthingtn advocate marijuana was an effective agent to moderate his pain. In his role as an advocate for the medical use of marijuana, John felt marijuana was a suitable alternative to prescription pharmaceuticals for controlling chronic pain that didn’t carry many of the undesirable side effects of the harsher prescription drugs.
This is where Ione George, Kitsap’s prosecutor enters the picture. Rather than admit there was no DEA raid and that WestNET actually raided him, George quarterbacked the effort to hide the truth so that the statute of limitations could expire on future legal claims by Worthington. This leaves Mr. Worthington with trying to find out who it was that decided to use WestNET to conduct a phony DEA raid well after the statute of limitations has expired.
So Mr. Worthington, in trying to find out who ordered the phony DEA raid, filed “public records requests” to see which of the “entities of this Non entity” were involved . Ione George argued that Mr. Worthington’s public records request must be dismissed as it is directed to “WestNet” which is a “non-entity” and not subject to the laws. The trial court and the Washington State Court of Appeals agreed. Mr. Worthington appealed to the Washington State Supreme Court, which ruled in favor of Mr. Worthington and against this “shell game” being played by Ione George and remanded the case back to Kitsap County Superior court. During the Supreme Court briefing George and the Kitsap County Prosecutor argued WestNET did not conduct seizure forfeiture activity.
On remand the Trial court ruled against Worthington and ruled WestNET was actually Kitsap County and under the umbrella of the Kitsap County Sherrif’s office. Worthington filed a motion to reconsider and submitted numerous court appearances by WestNET and also produced some checks written to WestNET.
The Counsel for WestNET filed a motion acknowledging the sanction able gaff to the Supreme Court regarding WestNET seizure forfeiture activity and the Kitsap County Superior court Judge Melissa Hemstreet ordered a hearing. Worthington submitted a document trail showing over 300 checks were written to WestNET , then deposited into the WestNET fund. Worthington has also discovered affidavits for search warrants, notice of intents to seize and other judicial and quasi judicial paperwork was also filed in the name of WestNET. Ione George claimed the 12 years of WestNET seizure activity was the result of scrivener’s errors.
Mr. Worthington is now asking the Kitsap County Superior court, via a declaratory judgment action, to determine if WestNet is a government agency or a Non -Entity. If the court decides that WestNET is not a legal entity then, they would have to return all the property and cash they confiscated from thousands of people since 1998.
What this means is that now there are serious criminal implications for the acts of WestNET in criminal seizure and forfeiture the last 12 years, which also involve three or more court venues who required defendants to pay them WestNET related fines and fees, which they forwarded on to WestNET after they took their cut. This case has Rico Act, bank fraud, mail fraud, forgery, criminal impersonation, racketeering, money laundering, official misconduct, obtaining a signature by deception and perjury implications.
What this also means is that public officials may have to go to jail, towns and counties may go broke after they pay back these ill-gotten gains obtained in their role as a non-legal since 1998.
How would you feel if you were in Mr. Worthington’s shoes. If ever there was a whistleblower situation this is it.
Has legal watchdog John Worthington opened a can of worms on Washington State and the entire I-502 rules making process and legislative bill lobbying? It looks like most of the groups involved are recipients of federal grant money, and federal law appears to prohibit them from lobbying with that money. Read the full letter he sent out that contains public records documents to back up his claims…
Executive Office for United States Attorneys
United States Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Room 2242
Washington, DC 20530-0001
Senate Appropriations Committee
Room S128, The Capitol
Washington, DC 20510
House Appropriations Committee
H-305, The Capitol
Washington DC 20515
1229 King Street, 3rd floor
Alexandria, Virginia 22314
In 2012 Washington State passed Initiative 1-502. After the Initiative had passed it was discovered through public access laws in December of2014 that the Washington State Liquor Control board travelled around the State of Washington and held 17 secret meetings with law enforcement and treatment professionals.
Aside from the fact that these acts violated the Washington State Open Public Meetings Act, it is now clear that many of these law enforcement and treatment organizations were receiving federal grants which by law may have prohibited them from lobbying and distributing information.
However, that is what happened here in Washington State on a grand scale, and the U.S. Attorneys for Washington were both aware of these events where many other federal agencies also attended these secret public meetings.
I believe that this situation may be the worst violation of 18 U.S. Code § 1913 -Lobbying with appropriated moneys, in United States history. Numerous grant receiving entities may have violated 18 U.S. Code § 1913, in a desperate attempt to save their respective jobs which were obviously on the line here in Washington State after the passage of l-502, the marijuana legalization initiative.
As many of you know we are a nation of laws that have to be applied evenly and fairly if the public confidence is to be kept intact. While it may be uncomfortable for some in Congress to hold these entities involved accountable to the law, it is in fact a law and it should be upheld regardless of your feelings on the issues of marijuana or drug abuse. These people signed federal grants under a declaration that federal grant monies would not be: used directly or indirectly to pay for any personal service, advertisement, telegram, telephone, letter, printed or written matter, or other device, intended or designed to influence in any manner a Member of Congress, a jurisdiction, or an official of any government, to favor, adopt, or oppose, by vote or otherwise, any legislation, law, ratification, policy, or appropriation, whether before or after the introduction of any bill, measure, or resolution proposing such legislation, law, ratification, policy, or appropriation; of any bill, measure, or resolution proposing such legislation, law, ratification, policy, or appropriation;
Now, after meeting with the Washington State Liquor Control Board on 17 different occasions and perhaps more, the following federal grant recipients are subject to the provisions of 18 U.S. Code § 1913:
Spokane County Multi-Jurisdictional Drug Task Force
LEAD Multi-Jurisdictional Drug Task Force
Substance Abuse Prevention of Clark County
Washington Association for Substance Abuse violence Prevention
Washington State Prevention Enhancement (SPE)
The following federal grant recipient sent employees employed by programs which were receiving federal funding:
Washington State Patrol-lAD Division (In charge or Multi-Jurisdictional Drug Task Forces)
The reality is the Washington State Liquor Control Board enabled many federal grant recipients to circumvent their statement of assurances which they signed agreeing not to use federal grant funding for lobbying purposes. I would not at all surprise me if the same thing happened in Colorado, Alaska, or DC.
Please hold these federal grant recipients accountable for their violations of federal laws.
PS. It has been argued and won in Federal court that state employees under federal grants are subject to the Westfall Act, and subject to the Federal Tort Claims Act as a “loaned state employee” or “Borrowed servant.” They can’t have it both ways. The Loaned employee’s violated 18 U.S. Code § 1913: Please check for their reporting. http://www.ioos.noaa.gov/library/grantsgovsflll.pdf