Wednesday, August 26, 2020

Republicans Slam Democrats' Support For (or Prosecutions For) Marijuana

Cissie Graham Lynch speaking at the RNC. 
The Republicans have put forth two women in the first two nights of its convention to lambaste Democrats over their marijuana policies. 

Last night, cancer survivor Natalie Harper praised the administration's FDA "Right to Try" reform act, affording incurably ill patients access to developmental drugs, then went onto claim that Democrats' healthcare plan is "a right to marijuana, opioids and the right to die with dignity."

Tonight, Cissie Graham Lynch, Billy Graham’s granddaughter, included among her indictments of the Democrats the banning of church services due to COVID, while declaring marijuana shops essential during the pandemic. “Even during the pandemic, we saw how quickly life can change," she said, "Some Democrat leaders tried to ban church services while marijuana shops and abortion clinics were declared essential."

A few speakers later, anti-abortion advocate Abby Johnson stated that, "Margaret Sanger was a racist who believed in eugenics," adding that Planned Parenthood clinics where "infant corpses are pieced back together” are predominately in minority communities.

Ironically, Republicans have been attacking former California AG Kamala Harris over her past record of marijuana convictions ever since her Vice Presidential nomination. Former New York Mayor and Trump acolyte/attorney Rudy Guiliani tweeted about it, which was especially ironic since under Guiliani's reign in NYC, the number of marijuana arrests soared, a result of his "stop and frisk" policies that largely rounded up people of color. 

Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Tokin' Woman Kamala Harris Gets VP Nod

Harris talking pot on "The Breakfast Club"

Presumptive Democratic Presidential nominee Joe Biden has named California Senator Kamala Harris as his Vice Presidential pick. 

During her Presidential campaign, Harris said on a radio talk show she was “absolutely in favor of legalizing marijuana,” harkening to her half-Jamaican heritage and citing the mass incarceration resulting from cannabis prohibition, particularly of young black men. Harris admitted she smoked weed when she was in college, and when asked if she might start smoking again, said, “I think it gives a lot of people joy, and we need more joy in the world.”

California  NORML notes, "As San Francisco’s District Attorney and California’s Attorney General, Harris upheld California’s medical marijuana law. Since being elected to the Senate, she has come on strong for federal marijuana law reform as the Senate sponsor of the Marijuana Opportunity, Reinvestment, and Expungement (MORE) Act to remove marijuana from the Controlled Substances Act, enabling states to set their own marijuana policies and reinvesting funds in communities of color that have been impacted by laws against marijuana." 

Monday, August 10, 2020

Hillary Clinton Tweets that Maureen Dowd May Have Had "Too Much Pot Brownie"

In response to New York Times columnist Maureen Down claiming there hadn't been a male/female major Presidential ticket in 36 years, Hillary Clinton tweeted:

The Times has corrected Dowd's column, and their tweet, to reflect that no male presidential candidate had selected a woman VP candidate since Walter Mondale picked Geraldine Ferraro in 1984.

Clinton's tweet refers to the column written by Dowd in 2014 after she overdosed on a pot brownie she bought at a Colorado marijuana store (without reading its warning label). "Sitting in my hotel room in Denver, I nibbled off the end and then, when nothing happened, nibbled some more," she wrote. "What could go wrong with a bite or two?"

NORML's director Erik Alteri took umbrage at Clinton's tweet, and I understand his frustration with lame "stupid stoner" jokes. But note that the tweet actually warns about taking "too much" pot brownie, a message of moderation in keeping with NORML's "low and slow" advice on edibles. 

Saturday, August 8, 2020

Ina Coolbrith: A Bittersweet Life

Ina Coolbrith at age 30
Though she consorted with fellow writer Mark Twain, and was an influence on Jack London—both of whom tried hashish—it's doubtful Ina Coolbrith ever got the chance. Her duties to her family and others scarcely allowed her time to pursue her literary career, much less indulge in exotic pleasures.

Born into a Mormon family that was exiled and traveled by wagon train to California, her biography Ina Coolbrith: The Bittersweet Song of California's First Poet Laureate by Aleta George details the hardship she and many women of the time endured.

Fleeing an early abusive marriage in Los Angeles, Coolbrith and her family moved to San Francisco in 1862. When she wasn't busy taking care of her mother and siblings and their household, she was supporting them by working 12 hours a day, 6 days a week at the Oakland Free Library, where she was librarian. Her hours were so long that she usually stayed on a cot in the basement, eventually moving to Oakland.  

The hardest part of her arduous life was not finding the time to write, and watching her compatriots like Twain and Joaquin Miller (whom she named) have successful writing careers. She even cared for Miller's daughter while he went off and laid a wreath of California laurel she had made at Lord Byron's grave, something she longed to do. Miller read aloud Ina's poem to Byron as he placed her wreath: 

O winds, that ripple the long grass!
O winds, that kiss the jeweled sea!
Grow still and lingering as you pass
About this laurel tree.

Sunday, August 2, 2020

Kerry Washington & Girlfriends Light Little Fires Everywhere

Kerry Washington plays an artist who finds inspiration in weed in Little Fire Everywhere 

I hadn't realized it, but I spent National Girlfriend Day yesterday binge watching Hulu's Little Fires Everywhere, the female-produced adaptation of the acclaimed Celeste Ng novel about race, class, motherhood and more. 

Set in the "planned community" of Shaker Heights, Ohio where Wu lived growing up, the series was co-produced by her and by series stars Kerry Washington and Reese Witherspoon, among others, including Lynn Shelton, the beloved actress/writer/director/producer who died unexpectedly in May at the age of 54 from acute myeloid leukemia.

Unlike the book, the series shows Washington's character Mia, an artist and single mother, smoking a marijuana pipe in her studio, and in her car before starting one of her menial jobs. Washington tweeted in answer to the question, "What was the most fun thing to bring to life on screen?" like this: