The Boogie Man in the Bush: Letter to the Editor Asks, Is Marijuana Legalization Really a Good Idea?

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Pounds of marijuana and concentrate sit on the hood of a police car. [Photo from the Eureka Police]

To the Editor:
Like many of you I imagine, I feel deep sorrow to read these endless articles of busts and gorilla grows; poisoning the planet is despicable, no doubt about it. But I must stand up and say, I am equally unsettled to read about legalization, being the solution to all of our woes.

I understand that the environmental degradation, which exists today (in nearly all industries) must seize; however I do not understand what would positively change in regards to policing the environment, if legalization were in place. There are at least four flaws in the pro-legalization argument that I can see, which contradict this notion of effectiveness in resolving environmental degradation.

First, how are the police going to be any more effective in a legalized society, as they are today? Let us not forget, gorilla growing has always been illegal. Yet, with approximately 30% of the county budget, those sparkly new SUVs, weapons, civil forfeiture, advanced drones and spy technology, it is still thriving today.

Not-to mention, locals can surly concur when I remind them that, police presence is not always in the best interests of our community or the environment, but rather corporate interests (i.e.: Willits bypass, Richardson Grove, Wal-Mart, homeless, gmo labeling, fracking, pipelines, forest clear-cutting, the list goes on). How would this circumstance be different with cannabis?

Another inconsistency I see is, how can we believe growers, who do not care about the planet today; intend to follow environmental regulations, if CA legalized? Regardless if there is increased regulation or police enforcement, whether legal, or not, it doesn’t matter. Most people tend to do what they have to do to survive, with little to no regard for ecosystem impact, unfortunately.

We live within a social structure that rewards violence, the conqueror mentality and a denial of natural laws on every level. It seems the same disease that causes growers to riddle the forests with rat poisons and grow more, to that which causes most police to serve corporations, over The People.

If you think about it, with an open heart and mind, regardless of your ability to have compassion or understanding around why “criminals” act the way they do, we can hopefully all agree; if there were living wage jobs and opportunities for all to procure their basic human needs, no one would choose the life of a gorilla grower who poisons the planet, just to hope to feed their families, right?

Last I heard, it is not so glamorous, camping out in a forest, likely getting paid a small fraction of those who pay them, to live a dirty, isolated existence, with sustenance in the realm of ramen, hot dogs and beer. But we never obtain this part of the story from the mainstream media. We just hear that the police found one of many “bad guy grows”, one of thousands of needles in a small haystack. We hear nothing about, why the needle or haystack exists in the first place, or how that is being remedied.

It is also worth reminding folks that, those plants that were pulled, will get replanted there or elsewhere inevitably. The police didn’t even catch the growers (not that I wish that for them), and it is interesting to note, this is typical of police ability. If they cannot catch the grower, and we can guarantee more plants will be planted, with more water and poisons used; then the police didn’t actually accomplish anything, even on a surface level. It seems nothing has changed after these busts, other than an enormous waste of your hard-earned tax dollars, endlessly spent to fund a war on, the poor ultimately.

At the end of the day, people need to eat, that is why we all do what we do, whether you are a cop, a trespass grower, homeless and/or work for a corporation. No amount of government force, fees, fines or regulations will change this constant theme that, we all need to procure our basic needs and there are only so many ways to do so. I do not mean in anyway to guilt, excuse or condone this reality; I only wish to bring this to light, with the hope to see our community use this once in-a-many-lifetime chance, to set a better example moving forward for others.

 

Any organic farmer can concur, imbalanced environments, breed disease in plants/nature. And if we do not address the environmental circumstances, which initially created the imbalance, the disease will continue to grow more and more problematic, as we see today. Contrary to popular doctrines, people are not above, but apart of nature, and so, apart of this truth too. Having a healthy planet, plant, society or person, requires balance in our environment, which is largely not the case.

With all of the national and local stories of race driven (economically disabled, etc.) police brutality, and before we vote to legalize growing a plant, under this current system of law, I feel it is prime time that we at least demand for police to become peace officers. If they insist on waging war of any kind, they should redirect their focus from their ongoing war on the poor, instead towards a war againstpoverty, which requires NO WEAPONS. Wouldn’t that be amazing to see a peace officer offer a hand to those who have a broken tail light, or those disenfranchised, homeless, or anyone suffering; rather than criminalize them and further perpetuate this system of violence? Coming from a stanch resistor, I would gladly pay taxes for this service. 

I wonder, at what point our community became convinced that a group who dominates, overpowers, uses coercion to control, weapons, and violence to try to combat violence; could have anything to say about enforcing sustainable communities/ecosystems? It seems an obvious oxymoron to me. Almost every notional and local headline confirm the fact that the government and law enforcement are ineffective in regards to maintaining healthy societies and a healthy planet.

If we parallel global and local woes such as environmental degradation, hate, violence, police misconduct/brutality, government corruption and yes even legalization, I see us missing very deep systemic issues and structural contradictions here. We are reaching out to a government and affiliate groups, who have a plan for regulating us that is by structural design, proven time and again, ineffective and unsustainable. We have hopes that the government will save the planet and us from another “boogie man in the bush,” in exchange for our consent to be regulated, and most of our money (via millions state-wide in fees and taxes). But are we convinced they are capable of serving us, our community, or the environment appropriately?

Can you recall a single government regulation, which brought sustainability? Thomas Linzey acclaimed environmental and human rights lawyer, co-author of the Ecuadorian Constitution, the School of Democracy, among many community ordinances says, “Sustainability is illegal, under our current system of law.” At a speech he gave at Lane College in Oregon, Linzey also quotes a fellow activist saying, “The only thing environmental regulations regulate, are environmentalists, making our behavior predictable.” When Linzey investigated thousands of regulations put in place nationally, to determine if our voted-on regulations had any positive influence, he found, we had virtually no positive effects in enforcing rules against corporation’s destruction of our planet and communities. Linzey states, “We do not live in a democracy,” and “the Constitutional structure of the United Sates, was never intended to be democratic.” After years of heart-felt attempts to legally defend communities like ours (Mendocino) in the face of destructive corporate interests, Linzey realized, there is no way to help communities achieve their goals of protecting the community and environment long-term, in our current system of law. So in place of becoming predictable (regulating farmers least likely to need regulating), while ignoring the root of these deeper issues, I say we also heed Linzey’s suggestion and “dismantle the entire system of law.”

Band-Aids atop gushing wounds, does not have to be the method for healing here in the Emerald Triangle, we do not need to rush to legalize. I say we do what we’ve always done, and work to heal in deeper, planet supporting fashions, regardless of the propaganda perpetuated to keep us separate and afraid. I know how much we love the environment here, but it seems we are being snookered into walking down an unsustainable road, by our own rhetoric. Dare I say, Bob Marley is rolling over in his grave to change his lyrics to “Decriminalize it…”

Our community is so wise, so giving, so unified, with hearts focused on permaculture in all facets of life. Why fund our own further victimization by an institution, which wages war endlessly, including a war on our planet, our forests, our families and community for generations? What was the entire struggle for, if we hand this sacred plant over to government and corporate control, in times when mother earth demands we do otherwise?

What are you here for? If your answer is money, this Letter to the Editor, is not for you. This letter is for the countless conscious farmers sowing this soil for change, for heart centered reasons, happy families, educated, conscious communities, growing organic food, living self-sufficiently, enabled to share and volunteer to make the world a better place, etc.

This might not be a super popular idea right away, because it requires some transition, time, and faith in that which is greatly indefinable. However, one big misunderstanding that I see plaguing The Emerald Triangle and society at large (no thanks to the mainstream media) is to believe we require police for protection, or similarly government for social order. Can you imagine a world where we didn’t need police for protection, or government for social order, because our systems and beliefs supported peace?

I can.

In order to move past the spots on the leaves to the root of the imbalance, I wish to pose this question: what if there is no such thing as evil, a person or group of humans in; Humboldt, Afghanistan, Iraq, in Louisiana, in Minnesota, Texas, in any state, or any culture? What if violence is mere consequence of our current beliefs and system’s social manifestations, which inspires the very human behavior that we all wish to see discontinued? Instead of the gun being the problem, is it not the mind of the man who pulls the trigger? Or rather, not the “evil grower,” but the circumstances, which create and reward that behavior, that must be resolved?

Humans have basic needs, of which, most are not met. This is what we need to individually and collectively do our part to address, conscious of it’s interconnectedness and in every realm.  This violent destruction of the environment, this destruction happening to people on all levels, is derived from misinformation, which will continue to exist, until we address the root of the issue authentically.

We can do this! It’s time for humans to evolve beyond this outdated system not built to serve us, in place of flailing in attempts to influence change from within it.  It’s not too late to change course, save ourselves, help save our sacred medicine and community, then grow, to set a better example for the world, and in doing so, positively change it. Just like the proper permaculturalists we are.

Many Blessings,

Shakti

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50 comments

  • Gorilla grows? Now I see the problem… Guerrillas make better growers than Gorillas.

    I’m sorry for being the pain in the butt that spoils someones well thought out opinion. But, I fell off my chair laughing at the thought of a bunch of gorillas growing Marijuana. Hey, It could happen. Nothing surprises me in Humboldt.

    • Really? You are trying to discredit a very well thought out and written position because of a typo? Autocorrect is responsible for most of these mistakes. All that being said, I disagree on many of his points, but yours is a cheap shot that doesn’t contribute to the conversation.

      • Ernie Branscomb

        Don, I toally agree with you. Whether it was auto-correct or a simple error I simply found it humorous. I am, by far, the last person that should correcting anyone.

        • Lost Croat Outburst

          Not a cheap shot at all, Ernie. I had the same reaction, glad you beat me to it. We all make mistakes but a little good humor goes a long way and some us learn something. I know I do.

          The essay is a series of opinions reflecting one person’s opinion. I don’t know anyone who thinks that re-legalizing weed/cannabis/pot will be the perfect solution. People who bring up that canard lose all credibility right off the bat. There will always be problems and issues just like with virtually all agricultural endeavors, including grapes.

          This is a start. Right off the bat it is obvious that the regulatory system appears to make little consideration for the small grower, saddling everyone with fees and expenses. There is absolutely no reason for continued legal harassment of this plant or its people. WE ARE Not all evil as Shakti suggests. We can be regulated like everything else. Constant insults and assumptions that cannabis is unlike anything ever seen on earth seem to be never-ending and Shakti has contributed yet another addition to the ash-heap of history.

          • Yeah and the Poppies are everywhere. The bolgies have 30 green houses next door and the creek is dry. The creek I grew up fishing in is dry 4 months out of the year now. Thanks to your legalization. Oh and there’s no fish when there is water.

      • Ernie…When I saw it was a letter ‘to the Editor’, then attempted to read the letter; all I could think was, that the letter should have been sent to An Editor, to edit.
        Same could probably be said of my sentence.

    • I had my funny-bone tickled on our “flailing attempts” until I realized that “flailing” is exactly what we’ve been doing.
      This is THE most succinct summary of this position I’ve read yet. Thank you. It’s carefully thought-out and hooked up to the Greater Whole, and I intend to copy it and send it on.
      Many people I know need to step back and take a better look at this Sword before we fall on it. af

    • Word Count Warning : 555

      Thanks to all who had the attention span to get through a very intricate, interconnected and complicated issue, and for taking the time to care.

      I feel gorilla is accurate actually, have you been to some of the hills recently? No, I’m sorry, that is totally offensive to gorillas. As funny as it is to imagine gorillas growing, oh wow yes it is ha! It actually helps illustrate my deeper point too. Some people are like animals with growing, or about making money generally, at any cost to people or planet. That isn’t the norm here, in my opinion it is actually counter to our culture, but it exists, and that seems closer to the root of the issue to me. This system expects, values and conditions savage, monkey-like behavior. So why are we attempting to use the problem, as our solution?

      My larger point regarding the future of cannabis is that it’s clear to me, this system we are entrenched in, does not serve the majority of people. It seems to me a perfectly logical question to pose, why we as a group, as separate from society as people can be in the states today, are asking this system to work for us.

      I certainly don’t mean to discount the legalization crowd or discredit the immense work you’ve exhausted for this important cause. I have so much respect for your work. I am entirely aware you do not want to see anyone criminalized, but please understand that is precisely my goal as well. In fact that is a main reason I bring this up, because I care so much about the end of criminalizing people who consume, prescribe, or grow, any plant. Have folks ever considered that legalization will only be an opportunity for the police, government, FDA etc. to criminalize medicine makers, patients and workers even more? That is my fear. It wouldn’t be the first Orwellian narrative in legislation that I can think of.

      I do not understand what is wrong with pushing for federal decriminalization across the board and how this would not accomplish more of our mutual goals, while maintain environmental and community integrity?

      OR, If we are going into this, with the idea that it must be fixed, why not fix what we have now first? How about free 215’s first, no fines, taxes or fees, 99 each, increased police tolerance, etc.

      I never meant to suggest legalization was framed as perfect, or activists didn’t intend to improve it eventually, over time. I understand it is a very long process using the system here, yes. That is again my point; I wonder if it’s a system we can ever succeed in using in any capacity?

      With regulation, I worry we are only hindering our effectiveness as activists for the environment, and so not something I am interested in exhausting my energy in, because again, I care so much. If you wonder where the votes are, you know? It seems a critical topic to discuss and collaborate on, in order to not be divided and conquered come Election Day. I would be the first person to sing with the choir and in line to vote to legalize, if I felt it helped the community, environment, farmers and decreased criminalization. But I am not convinced it will do any of that.

  • You kill me Ernie ,so true that article was so long I lost interest the first paragraph

  • Police used to have protect and serve on their vehicles, no longer the case. I asked one of our local police officers about it, not part of the job description anymore.

  • The answer to why legalization will greatly decrease the problems of environmental pollution, trespass grows, and most of the other problems associated with pot growing being illegal is one word: PRICE. When full legalization occurs, so that the average farmer can grow it in the Central Valley, Colorado, Iowa, and everywhere else, the price per pound will plummet to the point where flouting the law is just not worth it from an economic standpoint. It can be reasonably argued that environmental laws regarding herbicide use, etc, are too lax, but by and large, corn farmers in Iowa follow those regs, because the price they receive for their corn is low enough that there is very little money to be made by breaking the law. Who wants to go to jail for corn? My prediction is, that after commercial growers apply mechanization, breeding, cheap labor, and the economies of scale, and other modern agricultural technology, the per pound price will drop to a level that is comparable to other medicinal herbs, that is, around $50 to $100 per pound. At that point, the grow model starts to look a lot like the current operations of echinacea or goldenseal growers. Again, how many of these growers will risk fines and jail time for breaking grow regs for echinacea, which fetches about $30 a pound? Of course, the cultural history and mythos of marijuana might lead one to believe that there will be some kind of mass uprising against the regs, but in the end, as the market will declares winners and losers, it will simply become not worth it to try to grow commercially anywhere there’s not plenty of flat land and water. That means that the water problems in the hills will take care of themselves, as most Humboldt growers will have to find some other way to make a living. That’s why the debate in Humboldt on the allowable size of a pot garden, and all those detailed regs on taxation in the AUMA Proposition, are not only useless, but cripplingly counterproductive. We need to avoid locking ourselves into uncompetitive and unproductive positions which other states will not likely follow when they get into the new “green gold” rush. We never needed taxes or regs on echinacea growers in the hills, because there are so few commercial echinacea growers in the hills, and as market forces take hold, we will come to see that taxes and regs on Humboldt pot growing are also useless.

    • Nice to hear a rational voice! Thanks Thad. All of the regulations and permits are just people trying make a buck before the golden goose thrashes and dies.

    • 50-100 a pound is not realistic. It will be more like 125-200 for high quality, organic, perfectly grown to full maturity, trimmed to perfection with no stems or leaves.

      • Not going to comply

        Oh wow! The last few comments are so informed and well researched. Haha Especially Futuretoughts’. Futuretoughts projected sale price is $125-200 per pound.
        I don’t understand how he gets there considering It now costs $200 per pound to “[trim] to perfection]”, as he called for. He hasn’t adressed any other costs. Can you address the other costs?
        Obviously none of them have a clue of the cost of producing MJ. In the past it was just haters and jealous people we (growers) were attacked by. Now these idiots think they understand the economics and conditions that determine pricing! I’m sorry Thad that you spent a lot of time on your analysis, and I appreciate it, but it is completely wrong.

      • No one pays 200 to trim anymore and it will be about 100 dollars a pound by my calculations also .Good luck with that organic high end weed . Watch weedicate on vice channel .Harbor side already has miles of greenhouses in the central valley ready for production and that’s just one corporate grow

        • Most people I know in my neighborhood get $200 a pound and I even know cases of $250…

          • Lost Croat Outburst

            Yeah, well, Kymster, I don’t think I want to go through the court system again which incisive, jiving guru Shakti seems to think is a grand plan and has af and other folks suckered in. Sorry, but these keep-it-illegal folks are so clueless and they never quit.

            • I know reporters are not supposed to say their opinions but I think it is better to say it then let folks take that into account when they read my pieces. I am pro legalization. I’m tired of folks going to jail.

              • The thing is kym, the current hoops and regulations you need to jump threw to become ‘legal’ will cost so much and will be such a burden to do for most people, that only the MEGA-growers are gonna go threw the trouble of becoming legal. I’ve been looking into the process of becoming legal and it is by no means a ‘simple’ procedure. Tons of permits, tons of grey area, tons of CASH. This is probably why the only people who are legal right now have greenhouses that add up to 25,000 sq feet. (As I read of the honeydew property in the newspaper) this is going to kill humboldt.

                • I agree. I worry about my community. But that doesn’t mean that I don’t see that legalizing marijuana will be better for the greater good even if it does hurt Humboldt. And, of course, there’s always the chance we could make it work for us.

                • The only way I could see it working for us as a whole, would be if there was a complete reform on the process and procedures/ steps needed to become legit. Cause as it sits right now, theres just too much of a process involved and with it the uncertainty of what’s actually gonna happen down the road to go ahead and give the government a microscope, for them to look up your (you know where) with. I personally feel like if the only benefit of becoming legal is ‘you might not go to jail’ then that’s not enough for me. give me the assurance that once I become legit I won’t be the target of a robbery/ home invasion, give me the assurance that my product will be purchased as soon as it’s completed, and for prices that are the same or above what the current black market PR is…Who am I kidding, I don’t trust the government assurance or not.

                • Saucy, I wasn’t so much talking about the growers when I was talking about not going to jail—I was thinking of the consumers. Particularly I was thinking of young people of color who suffer the worst from this country’s drug laws.

          • Wow really? All the people I know get 1200 a pound!

        • seems like vast majority are 200/lb in my area and nearby areas as well.

        • Sleepy Alligator

          Maybe people who do not recognize the importance of quality trimming are not paying $200, but anyone who’s goal is to provide quality weed that they can be proud to say they grew, not just grow as much crappy weed as possible to make the most money as fast as possible, are still paying $200. Trimming is tedious, back aching, vision blurring, finger cramping work and good honest trimmers deserve no less than $200.

          I’m sure there are problems with my grammar so just save your criticizing English professors.

        • hahaha…I just watched that weediquette episode the other day. Oaksterdam guy is such a D-BAG. As he is showing his acres of greenhouses he says something to the effect of: ‘After I start these up there will probably still be a market for small time growers, you will just have to grow the absolute top-notch, otherwise nobodys gonna buy your stuff. people that have sorta just been ‘skating along’ are gonna have to step up there game or start looking for a different profession.’ – I literally just watched episode so that’s super funny you brought that up. Ya I think it’s safe to say when those greenhouses get planted with weed, it’s the starting days of a few hundred bucks a pound. The greenhouses he has make anything I’ve ever seen look small. (and Imma humboldt local)

          • Sleepy Alligator

            I agree. Steve DeAngelo (owner of Harborside) is a real douchebag and I hope his gigantic greenhouses get overtaken by spider mites. Then maybe he’ll be more supportive of mom&pop growers.

    • I do not know how to respond to each individually, so here goes all of them-

      Thank you Don for seeing past auto-spell check oversights, hopefully to the larger ideas, regarding compassion, parallel causes, effectiveness in solutions, and fear mongering propaganda used to keep us separate.

      Anon, thanks for the heart-felt comment also. It seems we live in the same “fantasy world” where we all have our basic needs met, where there is no need for violence and we are all free. It does blow my mind how difficult it is for folks to IMAGINE a very simple peaceful means of social organization. Humans have only been reinventing themselves for our entire existence, and isn’t that what is being demanded environmentally-speaking today? I do not think this is wishy washy in any capacity, in times like these especially, to think outside the box. Thanks again!

      Thad, thanks so much for taking the time to explain this to me. I can see you genuinely care. I care too. What you mention, has a lot of great points, of which are precisely what I want to avoid seeing happen to our community. I see patients, workers, farmers and the planet getting manipulated and extracted from every angel, while many of the reasons we all love this place, no longer able to thrive.

      I’m not sure why Lost coast outburst felt I was insulting growers or insinuating they are evil, I said the opposite actually and hoped to inspire compassion for one another’s positions everywhere. Maybe you misunderstood? “The boogie man in the bush” is mocking the idea that such a thing exists in any realm. This is the popular propaganda we get fed, but in my opinion there is no such thing as a evil person, just corruption in systems, that creates undesirable behavioral patterns and events.

      Shira you bring up an incredible perspective I hear echoed a lot also. Many didn’t come here to participate in corrupt systems, but with the intention of avoiding them. There has certainly been a riff here that I’ve noticed. Maybe others have also? Some people believe they can influence change from within the system, others feel this is an uphill, losing battle. As far as I understand many folks in the Emerald Triangle, as are of the ladder mindset, coming here to remove themselves from corruption in government and society, or brought here from grandparents and parents who had a similar sentiment?

      Some prefer to not fund war, they opt for the back-to-the land, self-governance, pro-family, sustainable, community-valuing approach, in place of a system, which has a disorder in what it values. Where does the anti-establishment, anti-business-as-usual sector fit into legalization? I do not see these folks being considered.

      General Trimming note-
      $2-300 is standard depending on quality. Anyone receiving less than $200 should quit their job, that is disgusting, oppressive worker abuse, which you can find at any corporation, now hiring. Cheating workers is not what the Emerald Triangle represents. Farmers, who do not pay 200 and get more than 1k per, should reconsider their values. Interestingly, if one must just look at it purely from an economic standpoint, this extractive behavior costs farmers eventually in one way or another. I hear about the cases time and time again. Ultimately the extraction minded farmers get bad worker ethics, bad vibes, etc. Unhappy workers cannot produce quality anything, let alone medicine. It’s a no-brainer to any permaculturist, the workers are a key part of the living system we call a farm, and their feeling nurtured, respected, safe, having basic needs met etc., is as important an element as tending to the livestock, soil and plants.

  • Then what is there job discription? Does anybody know any more .

  • I like the fact that law enforcement is lumped in with large corporations and infrastructure 🤔

  • This letter sounds ridiculous.
    Very hard to read and follow, i cannot even make sense of the nonsense this person thinks. What world is this person living in sounds totally like a fantasy land of generalization of emotional positions.

  • I agree that the root of the problems faced are over regulations that have ripped the busisnesses into oblivion. I also agree that decrimalizing is the path back towards freedom. I must admit, that is why I am shouting “Vote for Darrell Castle!!” every chance I get. We’ve got to work like hell to get him on all the ballots, time is running out.

  • Bla Bla Bla … just legalize it and make the weed industry play by the same rules as all other agriculture.

  • Most of the folks we know sell their weed out of state!and it’s not anywhere near 50,100,or 200.weird.if u sell in it humboldt u make nothing.and I know plenty who don’t use chemicals.she makes a few points in that letter,after I woke up and finished reading it.but I see none of that working.only in my dreams

    • Gma, the conversation is about paying trimmers 200 a pound not about how much the weed gets sold for. LOL. nobody sells pounds for anywhere near that.

  • Not well-written!! Can’t glean the point of all those words; confusing at best.

  • It’s 200 per lb.for a manacurist to trim bud,this day 2016….

  • While I agree with the premise I must say this letter is full of wishful and hopeful fantasy. We had a beautiful thing. We let in and even cheered on the mega-growers and their helpers like Jodrey. Not all of them were greedy egotistical fools….oh wait, they were. They never understood nor cared where that path would obviously lead us. Our only hope was to have law enforcement knock down the now easily seen and easily accessed large open gardens and thereby remove the mega- profit rewards. Law enforcement did not and basically went on hiatus for a number of years around 2004. So yeah, we got flooded by a greenrush of opportunists and parasites. This was all basic human behavior responding to a very obvious situation we allowed to develop and some of us publicized across the country (looking at you, Kevin Hoover). No surprise here. We still had a chance to legalize in a better way that protected medical patients and small growers. We did not do that but allowed organizations to sell the industry out to corporate interests (looking at you Oaksterdam and CCV-H), believing that somehow the big dogs would not show up?! It’s been very sad to witness the confluence of greed, ego, ignorance, stupidity and apathy create the perfect storm for our home-grown industry to be delivered to the same corporate beast that many of us crawled into the hills and worked so hard to oppose. But some of us got filthy rich and blew large stacks of cash on conspicuous consumption items so I guess that’s cool?!!

  • I hear the author`s points and I think they are well thought out and relevant to the discussions going on in many parts of our society right now.. While the idea of being free from the criminalization of the herb that has called to so many of us is obviously comforting and appealing, I cannot believe that a community of outlaws can be so shortsighted. policing and regulation does not work. It especially does not work for trans people, people of color, womyn, indigenous people, non cis gendered people etc. If you are having a strong contrary reaction to this letter you might read an article on checking your privilege or even the definition of privilege. I ended up here in life to avoid the governments version of safety which has always left me violated and profiled.

  • Sleepy Alligator

    Shakti I understand where you’re coming from and agree with many of your views, but this is the real world and I believe you’re big plan is one for fantasy land. I personally have one reason for why I hope that weed will be 100% legal on a national level some day (something I doubt will happen in my lifetime) and that reason is so not one more person will ever go to jail again for possession of marijuana in the U.S. I don’t mean possession with other related crimes, I mean just possession. Anyone who hasn’t been to jail for possession might not understand this but I’m guessing anyone who has will understand where I’m coming from. Outside this Emerald Triangle area there are still many places in this country where you will be put in jail for a seed, a roach, a baggie with weed residue, etc. There are many people sitting in jail right now and some being arrested as I type this for possession. If for no other reason support legalization to restore freedom of those jailed and assure freedom for those who just want to smoke a joint.

  • If you’re paying $200-250 a pound then you’re getting ripped off by a greedy-local.
    Trimigrants are anywhere from $100-150 max.

    Trimigrant rate is still too high, not a practical expense for a business and certainly not worth the skill-set required to preform the job.
    Soon trimming will be minimum wage (where it belongs) along with strict hiring screening and standards.

    • Sleepy Alligator

      No, if you’re paying $100-$150 then you’re either greedy or you don’t expect quality trimming. Either way you might not want to leave those cheated trimmers alone with your weed.

  • I disagree that environmental regulations have done nothing. The Clean Air and Clean Water acts have improved things tremendously. Is the job complete? No and it will never be complete while we have a growing population clamoring for unsustainable lifestyles.

    I also disagree that the environmental damage is done by people just trying to survive. Most of it is done by people wanting a lavish lifestyle who have no compunction or morals about harming anyone or anything in the process. Of course there are many who do this work on a smaller scale to survive and most of them do minimal harm.

    I am for harm reduction, and this can only be accomplished by legalization, or possibly decriminalization.

  • How has the Clean Air and Water act helped provide clean air or water? The current democratic nominee supports fracking, fluoride- a known neurotoxin is applied to approximately 75% of our drinking water nation-wide, and water is being poisoned with lead by politicians who greatly had no repercussions for their negligence. There are so many children in small minority communities in Texas and elsewhere that are on breathing devices due to pollutants in the air, caused by major industries, permitted by government to do harm to people and planet. With all due respect, these are just a few things that have me skeptical about our government enforcing environmental regulations, which effectively protect the environment. Thomas Linzey discussion in Oregon, if you are interested- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ilkABR3jVqA
    Or, here is something shorter, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CjLChnUyUcA

  • The discussion of trim price per pound isn’t so simple;
    would you rather get $200 and sleep on the ground in a tent in the cold rain while working all day in an old crappy trailer, or get $150-$175 and have luxury accommodations?
    So you see, not so simple.

  • Why should pot farmers be exempt from same guidelines and regulations that food farmers have to follow? Food producers have numerous permits, licenses, ordinances and laws to adhere to, from city, county, state, and federal regulators. Layers and layers of requirements, Good Agricultural Plan, Good Handling Plan, storm water runoff plans management plans, costly organic inspections and certifications if they choose that route. Why should someone growing your apples have to jump through all these hoops and pay the taxes and not pot farmers? What makes pot so special? Just legalize it and treat it as any other farm. With this large segment of the population is not contributing to the tax base which supports the schools, roads, police and fire it is no wonder that the infrastructure in crumbling.

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