Saturday, June 6, 2020

"Killer Mike": Nixon-style Villainizing of Hippies & Blacks over Marijuana at Play Today

Rapper and Atlanta-based activist Michael "Killer Mike" Render lit up Real Time with Bill Maher last night, and not just with his million-dollar smile. At one point, he brandished a joint for the cameras.

Maher, noting that both he and Mike “love our pot,” mentioned that AG Barr has employed the DEA on protesters. "I just want to say to some of these protesters: if someone offers you a joint, that might be a narc,” he said.

Mike responded, “The most ironic thing about that is, when Nixon declared the drug war, he declared it on hippies and on blacks. What they’re essentially doing is a new version of that, because hippies were just progressive white people at the time—shouts out to Ben & Jerry. They were people that were progressive enough to say right is right and wrong is wrong and white’s not always right, we’re gonna side with what’s right. And of course black people were pushing the line."

Mike, wearing a gold leaf NORML
member pin, with Peachtree
NORML's Sharon Ravert
"So Nixon villainizing them is a tactic that we see is still being used today,” Mike continued. "Why do you need drug enforcement agents at a protest? Really, you should hope everyone gets stoned, gets hungry and leaves. It doesn’t make very much sense to me. But it just shows that the government is willing to use whatever measures they can to suppress the people and their voices."

Mike called for all to, "Plot, plan, strategize, organize, and mobilize.” Vote in your local races for DA, Sheriffs, etc. and participate in the census, he said. Maher suggested that since he’s making great speeches, he ought to run for office.

Mike, who was born on 4/20/75, celebrated his 43rd birthday at a  NORML/Green Rush Team cannabis conference at Georgia's state capitol (pictured). He also worked for marijuana decriminalization in Atlanta, a city that had an embarassingly huge disparity in pot arrests for black vs. white people when Peachtree NORML's Sharon Ravert lobbied for the International Drug Policy Alliance to hold their biannual conference there in 2017. Just before the conference, which featured author Michelle Alexander (The New Jim Crow) as keynote speaker, the Atlanta city council voted unanimously to make the possession of under one ounce of marijuana a non-arrestable offense.

"Michael 'Killer Mike' Render has a heart of gold; he is a leader in Atlanta marching us all towards the change we deserve. His voice and actions will lead us into a brighter more JUST future," said Ravert, who is running for office in Georgia's House of Representatives in November.

Public Enemy Number One, a new documentary produced by rapper Ice-T, is premiering on iTunes on June 9. It asks,"What were Nixon’s motives for starting the War on Drugs and why did he designate marijuana as one of the most dangerous drugs of all time? But most importantly, how did it evolve into a self-perpetuating, constantly expanding policy disaster?" Another good documentary told from an African-American perspective is Grass in Greener. And don't miss Ava DuVernay's 13th, now on Netflix, which gives a great historical perspective on slavery, Jim Crow, and the WOD.

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