This last weekend, on Saturday July 11th, the “California Cannabis Hemp Initiative 2016” launched its campaign at the Chalice event in southern California and hosted a Free Concert and Rally at the Martin Luther king Jr. Civic center park in Berkeley. I was not able to attend the Chalice Event so I do not have much to share in those regards for now. Listen and check out more info about the Chalice event on the next episode of Let My People Grow on Wednesday night from 9pm to 11pm. You can also hear more about the Chalice event on Thursday night from 7:00pm to 9:00pm on the CCHI 2016 Radio Show.
However, I was able to attend the free concert and rally in Berkeley. Michael Rivera, his lovely girlfriend, Diane Valdavinos and myself all carpooled up to the event for the day. Let me start by saying that MLK park is a lovely park with the most beautiful surrounding architecture that backdrops almost every photo you take. Ron Wesley of ALotOfFun Productions did a wonderful job securing a beautiful location, stage, the most amazing talent, and security for the event. the stage was perfectly placed for the flow of people constantly coming over from the farmers market taking place on the next street over. They could hear the wonderful music being played as they shopped for their organic fruits and veggies and would instantly migrate towards the vendors, booths and stage. Special shout out and thank you to Ron L. Wesley for making that special and awesome day possible.
It really was a great day in the park. Thousands of people strolled through the park enjoying the music, food and vendors. all while stopping by the California Cannabis Hemp Initiative 2016’s booth. Some sat back in the shady round and enjoyed the show from a cool and windy distance. Many parents had their children playing in the park enjoying the music while they played on the playground. Not everyone was consuming cannabis but a lot of people were. The most shocking thing to me was there was no upturned noses from parents or people getting snooty about people consuming cannabis in the park. You also did not see a single cop harassing anyone.
The day started with the smooth groovy sounds of SopWith Camel floating through the airwaves of MLK park. minus the Bassist. Sadly his mom is not doing very well and we all wish him and his mom the very best. There almost hypnotic grooves filled the park with smiling faces and attracted the on goers of the farmers market over towards the vendors, booths, and stage. Though they were missing a band mate they truly played an awesome show for the city of Berkeley that day. Thank you guys!
After Sopwith Camel finished their amazing performance. The Island of black and white came on stage and just blew everyone away with their uniquely amazing sound and style. At one point in the performance the sound board operator was having a few technical difficulties and they continued to play acoustically. At one point in the performance the lead singer hopped on his uni-cycle and played his accordion while riding around in the front of the stage. he played for a minute or two while the band seamlessly picked up with the tune he was playing. He then returned to the stage and continued the performance. these are some really talented performers and musicians who donated their time and money to this great cause.
After the face melting performance and awesome cover of “House of the rising sun” by the Island of black and white we got to hear from one of our first speakers of the day, Pat Malo from Santa Cruz.
Then The band at Hand stepped on stage and played some classic covers of some classic hits from the sixties and seventies for a bit and kept everyone grooving and smiling until the Bluesetta Band came on stage and tickled the keys and played some jazzy tunes for everyone in the park. Ima Jean Hemp even made a guest duet appearance on stage with the Bluesetta band. Rocking and wailing like there was no tomorrow. I really enjoy this band. They are all such nice lovely people and talented musicians to boot.
After the Bluesetta band was done wrapping up there jazzy set we got to hear from one of my personal favorite cannabis activists and freedom fighters. Chris Conrad, author, an expert witness on cannabis and owner and operator of the West coast leaf. Now its all digital and goes by theleafonline.com. He showed up to the event to express his pride and gratitude to the people who have kept the CCHI Initiative alive all these years. This is language that was written and crafted by Jack Herer and Chris Conrad and many others many years ago. These men, and women did all the studies and researched into the real causes and people behind prohibition. They also did heavy research into the positive effects of legalizing cannabis hemp 100%. How it could in fact help save the planet, stop deforestation, replace petroleum, and help reverse the green house effects. Chris knows that the CCHI 2016 is the best language and initiative for the people of California in 2016. That is why he spent so much time in the past fighting and crafting this language in the first place. I could go on and on talking about how much I respect Chris Conrad, his awesome wife Mikki Norris, and everything he said that day. But I will just let him tell you in his own words.
Now if that didn’t get you fired up to get off the couch and take to the streets collecting signatures, and stumping for the people’s initiative, the “CCHI2016″ I’m afraid there is not much anyone can do to motivate your lazy ass. What did he call it again? Oh yeah! ” This is the best, the best, the best initiative for the people of California and its up to us to secure it on the 2016 ballot, and its the one I want everyone busting their butt for this upcoming election cycle!”
Just after Chris Conrad got the entire park and city of Berkeley ready to march across the United States and demand the end of Prohibition we were all greeted with the intergalactic funky sounds of Gigantis. This lady, and gentlemen’s where rocking and funking the hell out of MLK park during the hottest time of the day and it never even phased there intergalactic jam session. These Guys and Lady were awesome. She even game me a free Shirt! One of my new favorite bands.
After the intergalactic funky grooves had finally resided. Dan Herer made his way to the stage and spoke softly, calmly and very intelligently about the importance of ending cannabis prohibition and why he believes the California Cannabis Hemp Initiative 2016 is that solution. Unlike his father he is quite and humble, But just like his dad he gets directly to the point and is very motivational. He is a very nice man and a very hard-working person that I respect dearly.
Once Dan Herer wrapped up his speech Clear Conscience took to the stage and blessed everyone with their reggae/rock/hip-hop sound. These guys didn’t hold back anything. They came on fast and jammed out with their rocking island vibes vibrating throughout the park. These guys did an amazing job and were quite possibly one of my favorite bands of the event. I really like the flow and sound of their music. They all really meld and mesh together quite nicely producing their very own unique sound and vibe.
Once Clear Conscience wrapped up their performance we got to hear from another O.G. cannabis activist. State Coordinator of the CCHI2016, and a dear friend and trusted associate of Jack Herer’s, Buddy Duzy. Buddy took to the stage to tell everyone that the California Cannabis Hemp Initiative 2016 is not just a pot initiative. It is a states rights initiative. This allows us to Legalize, the way we want to! These allows us to regulate, the way we want to! The government has no business, or legal right telling the sovereign people and the sovereign state of California what laws or guidelines we must abide by in regards to cannabis hemp prohibition.
Must be getting early? Are all the clocks running late? Because I’m hearing a grooving sound that is similar to the Grateful Dead, but it kinda sounds Hardly Deadly! Hardly Deadly closed out the night with some of the greatest classic Grateful Dead songs the world has ever known. They got everyone that remained in the park to come up to the stage, dance and be merry while they closed out the evening and event with their own unique and awesome dead head sound. You can tell these guys genuinely enjoy music and just jamming out till you can’t jam out no more! These guys were a great finishing act for an amazing evening in the park in Berkeley Ca.
I just want to thank everyone that came out to the Event last weekend. The vendors, the food, the sound guy, security, the amazing bands and speakers, and the Promoter for making this day possible. It was a very memorable day and a very successful official launch of the California Cannabis Hemp Initiative 2016’s campaign. We are all looking forward to having many more of these types of events as the campaign continues. I know me and Diane are working hard on trying to lock down a venue to hold a CCHI 2016 Free concert and rally here in fresno or the central valley. So if you can help us with securing a location for an upcoming free concert and rally for the CCHI 2016 here in fresno please contact us at email@example.com or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Before I go, I wanted to share some photos of dear friends, dedicated activists, and all the amazing vendors and booths that helped make that day possible. You guys rocked! Thanks again!
By Dustin F. Lowery
Are you looking forward to the potential of Cannabis legalization in California come 2016? So am I! Have been for quite some time now. Since 2009 I have actually dedicated my life to sharing and educating people about the truths and potential of Cannabis Hemp. Its one of the main reasons I am writing this article today. The future of Cannabis legalization in California may seem almost destined to pass with flying colors in 2016. I assure you, it is not going to be as simple as it is perceived. What some may consider legalization, doesn’t necessarily equate to the legalization you may be expecting. Now with that being said, there are only a few ways to ensure that real legalization happens in 2016. And almost all of them start and end with you. Yeah you, the reader. Not just you, me and everyone else also.
First things first. If you’re sitting back waiting for the (DPA) Drug Policiy Alliance, (Norml) National Organization for Reform of Marijuana Laws, (ASA) Americans For Safe Access, and other so-called activists groups to deliver legalization for you. You probably would not get to excited about the final result. Do you believe they will form an initiative that favors the average patient, or consumer over the current medical marijuana industry leaders and stake holders? If you do, you have been sadly mislead. Why? Because these very organizations are ran and supported by, you guessed it, the very Industry leaders and business owners who enjoy their absorbent profits from the current unregulated model. How could I possibly know this? I have seen it first hand. I have traveled up and down this state to several cannabis events sponsored by these groups. I have seen the subversion they use to promote the Industry over the plant itself. I specifically recall the big ASA lobbying event at the state capitol a few years back. Where they specifically advertised the weekend as a patient lobbying day. So I wanted to check this lobbying day out for myself. I figured at least it would be an educational experience. Which it was, for several reasons.
When we arrived at this local union hall in the middle of nowhere in Sacramento one of the first things I noticed was there was a lot of dress shirts and Dockers. Everywhere! They all had their ASA lobbying day badges around their Necks looking professional. They had very nice and lavish charter buses they had rented to bus the “Patients” from other districts to Sacramento. Where were these patients? After clambering around during their meeting recording what I could with my camera I had seen virtually no patients. Every word out of their mouths was about lobbying there representatives the following day at the capitol building . All about regulating the medical marijuana industry. The thing I found most interesting was after the meeting I wanted to speak with some of these patients and get there take on the meeting. Almost every single person I spoke with was a patient in the legal sense, but not your everyday average patient. They were all Industry insiders, and Dispensary owners there to lobby their representatives for more restrictive regulations in regards to the medical cannabis industry. I think one of the most telling signs was how excited Don Duncan got once Stephan Deangelo and his Brother showed up at the capitol building. My point is, they tell you one thing to your face, and do another behind closed doors. They verbally promote legalization, regulation and reform. But not the kind that benefits the everyday consumer and patient. If you are relying on them to author something that will meet your needs as a Consumer or a Patient. Think again!
One of my favorite Hemp activists Chris Conrad wrote a really good piece back during the TaxCannabis prop-19 debate. ( http://weedactivist.com/2010/07/25/another-word-on-jack-and-prop-19-from-chris-conrad/ ) (Excerpt) – Initially Jack deeply hated Prop 215. He literally stumped up and down the state cursing out hemp activists who backed it. He screamed at us, called us traitors for working on medical use, and claimed that Dennis Peron was secretly against legalization. When 215 was filed, Jack filed the California Hemp Initiative (CHI) on the 1996 ballot to block it. and changed the name to “California Hemp _and Health_ Initiative” so people signing it would think they had signed Prop 215, to mess with the signature count. When I called him on it, he said he was trying to keep Prop 215 off the ballot because, among other things, “people will stop working for legalization and we’ll be stuck with medical forever. No hemp, no legalization; that will be the end.” Later he circulated the CCU petitions for pay, then before the election came to support it completely. Now some people actually credit Jack for ‘passing Prop 215. Jack vociferously opposed Senate Bill 420, but he loved the dispensaries it allowed to open. ( click the Above link to read the entire piece).
Jacks words – “people will stop working for legalization and we’ll be stuck with medical forever. No hemp, no legalization; that will be the end.” Jack Knew it then, and they also knew it then. Guess what ? They still know it now! This is exactly what we have been dealing with for the last 19 years. The industry leaders and club owners don’t want there quasi legal black market profits going anywhere. So enter the DPA, Norml and ASA with their attempts at dividing the legalization movement as a whole. They certainly don’t want the everyday average consumer to be able to cultivate their own Cannabis at home, over buying their middle man marked up products in their stores. Do you think (Norml), (ASA) and the (DPA) want everyone in California cultivating a possible 99 plants legally? Do you think they want to lose that revenue stream? Not just the dispensary owners and industry leaders but the activist groups themselves? No they don’t! and they are very active right now at subverting attention away from the CCHI 2016 initiative for other initiatives that have not even been written yet. Yet they all love to invoke the legacy of jack Herer. Like Stephan Deangelo of Harborside in Oakland Ca. One of the Worlds largest dispensaries in the world by the way. He constantly speaks of how good friends him and Jack were, and how they shared the same vision in regards to legalization and cannabis, Well I will have to beg to differ here. I personally asked Stephan Deangelo during the CCHI 2012 signature campaign, at Harborside’s yearly shindig called The Deep Green Festival if he supported the Jack here Initiative. He simply replied, I do not support any initiative until they have already registered for the ballot. So the man who makes the most money, and the most profits in California, from the Patients of the medical cannabis industry no less, won’t support or finance any legalization effort until it has already officially made the ballot. Share the same vision my ass!
The point is, if you rely on industry leaders, and activists groups to do the work for you, you’d better get ready for a heaping pile of disappointment. Trust me when I say they will let you down every time. In the words of Jack Herer – “You guys have to be warriors for your own freedom. You can’t depend on me or anyone else to do it for you. This freedom comes from our willingness to put our acts on the line and teach people all the comprehensive information we have learned about cannabis hemp.” We don’t need big money, we need big motivation and big determination from an educated base of citizenry. The CCHI 2016 is organizing up and down, and throughout the entire state as I write this article. We are organizing a base of volunteers and supporters to get the signatures necessary to qualify for the November 2016 ballot. Please click the link at the top right of the site for more information on how you can get involved with the fight to liberate cannabis 100% for everyone.