Marijuana

"I Smoke Weed and I'm a Good Person!" DNC Cannabis Pride March Concludes with Smoke Session at Delegates' Entrance

Cannabis marchers thank Philadelphia police for their professionalism, then proudly smoke marijuana at DNC gates.

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DNC Cannabis March Smoke-in
Reason/Anthony L. Fisher

About 100 stout-hearted demonstrators took part in today's DNC Cannabis Pride parade, marching from Philadelphia's Marconi Park down Broad Street and concluding at the security gates outside Wells Fargo Arena, where most participants smoked marijuana in plain view of law enforcement. 

With the Democratic National Convention (DNC) in town this week, the Philadelphia PD certainly has greater law enforcement concerns than a well-behaved group of pot-smokers who have already marched in far greater numbers this week, and the police gave the cannabis marchers a safe escort down the street toward the convention.

One of the marchers, Dana Beal, was a living embodiment of why this now-fairly benign act of protest was a revolutionary act in very recent memory. Beal was a Yippee (the name given to members of the Youth International Party) in the 1960s who organized some of the first "smoke-ins" in New York's Tompkins Square Park. Prior to the march, Beal talked to the crowd about how much progress has been made in his over 50 years of pro-marijuana advocacy, but he also angrily decried marijuana's continued status as a Schedule I narcotic.

Beal also leveled a dig at members of the Revolutionary Communist Party, who he accused of "ripping off our permit" when they held a protest at the same spot where the Cannabis Pride people had been legally permitted to demonstrate. "I know those guys," Beal said, "they just don't respect potheads!"

Don't touch my stash, bro
Reason/Anthony L. Fisher

One speaker talked about how legally prescribed medicinal marijuana has helped dramatically reduce his daughter's seizures, and a wheelchair-bound man told Reason about how marijuana has helped with his anxiety and pain management after he broke his neck in a pool accident eight years ago. 

Adam Eidinger, a Washington, D.C. marijuana activist and the founder of Capitol Hemp, told the crowd that "he's not excited as he probably should be" about the fact that a woman is set to make history tonight when Hillary Clinton accepts the nomination of a major political party for president.

"I'm not sure she's going to be so much help, to be honest," Eidinger said, "but that's why we're here." Eidinger celebrated the language included in the Democratic platform calling for states to serve as "laboratories of democracy on the issue of marijuana," but complained that the word "marijuana" has yet to be uttered by an on-stage speaker at the DNC.

The march concluded at the gates of the DNC, where most of the demonstrators proudly and openly toked up on joints in plain view of law enforcement. One of the march's organizers thanked the Philadelphia police for supporting their right to protest and decried the "assholes" who breached the gates of the security perimeter last night, which he described as a deliberate attempt to mislead the media and make the police look bad. 

People are still rotting in jail for marijuana-related offenses, and despite the Democratic Party's platform, there's plenty of reason to be skeptical of what a potential Hillary Clinton administration would do when it comes to marijuana legalization and prosecuting the war on drugs. But a large group of self-professed potheads blazing up in plain view of the police — and thanking those same police for being "cool" — is still quite a thing to behold. 

NEXT: LIVE from the DNC in Philadelphia - Matt Kibbe

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  1. Beal also leveled a dig at members of the Revolutionary Communist Party, who he accused of “ripping off our permit”

    Wow, imagine he called the cops on them.

    “‘Yippee Sicks “The Man” on Communists””

    its notable how the former anti-institutionalists always transition to begging favors from institutions.

    1. Maybe he should also realize that they’re communists, and ripping off is what communists do.

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  2. One of the march’s organizers thanked the Philadelphia police for supporting their right to protest and decried the “assholes” who breached the gates of the security perimeter last night, which he described as a deliberate attempt to mislead the media and make the police look bad.

    So what now? This was a marijuana protest/demonstration that doubled as a support for the police? Am I reading too much into this?

    1. He was just greasing some cop pole, hoping to keep them from arresting his peeps.

  3. the word “marijuana” has yet to be uttered by an on-stage speaker at the DNC.

    I really hope GJ gets in the debates. Anti-interventionist (he definitely is compared to the other two), pro-marijuana legalization, lower taxes, pro-free trade, etc. He is a stark contrast to the other two. It is sickening.

    1. I really don’t think Gary Johnson can do any of his positions justice in the debates. I also think libertarians wrongly believe they hold stronger appeal to voters than they really do. A better spokesmen already took most of those positions and didn’t crack 1% in the GOP primary (spare me talk about how Rand “sold out” because he proposed an unrealistic military spending increase offset by cuts elsewhere – a move made to make a point, not because he thought it would be adopted).

      Johnson makes the cankled one look charismatic.

      1. Johnson makes the cankled one look charismatic.

        I don’t have a problem with most of your statement, until this.

        1. Ditto. But I like oddballs.

    2. I really don’t think Gary Johnson can do any of his positions justice in the debates. I also think libertarians wrongly believe they hold stronger appeal to voters than they really do. A better spokesmen already took most of those positions and didn’t crack 1% in the GOP primary (spare me talk about how Rand “sold out” because he proposed an unrealistic military spending increase offset by cuts elsewhere – a move made to make a point, not because he thought it would be adopted).

      Johnson makes the cankled one look charismatic.

      1. He is a goofy bastard, and I would agree with you but he does not have to be charismatic in debates. He has give a few solid answers to questions and people will project on to him, like they do for Trump and Sanders. I do not think he is going to win of course, but he could move the needle on a few issues, which at this point is the best we are going to get.

      2. At the time Rand was making these points, there were a dozen other options ranging from completely fuck nuts to slightly sane. If GJ gets to present his case next to Hillary and Donald alone, I think these point may resonate a bit better.

        1. I’m not sure that going from a dozen other options ranging for completely fuck nuts to slightly sane, to two options running the gamut from completely fuck nuts to slightly sane, is going to make a difference.

          1. which one is sightly sane?

    3. The other two?!! Way to gloss over the fact there’s a woman running.

      1. Think about her vagina, Paul. You gotta think about it. Think – think about.

        1. According to my wife I already spend way too much time thinking about vaginas.

  4. I smoke crack and I’m a good person.
    I cook and use meth and I’m a good person.
    I snort heroin and I’m good person.

    While in this instance they are advocating for freedom, I can’t help but remain cynical that if the drug of choice were just changed slightly a lot of the marchers would react with revulsion. When the argument used to advocate decriminalization/legalization is still devoid of an underlying principle of self-ownership, it’s almost self-defeating. Despite Reason’s beating the marijuana drum the loudest, relatively few people are in jail for simply smoking it. Selling it? A bit more. But it’s the other drugs that people get hammered for.

    Maybe I just don’t have the patience for the whole incremental thing the progressives are so good at. They move things inch by inch one incoherent argument at a time.

    1. Don’t you get it? I’m a good person, why would you want to deprive me of my liberties or property? It would apply to crack, etc. too.

    2. “When the argument used to advocate decriminalization/legalization is still devoid of an underlying principle of self-ownership, it’s almost self-defeating.”
      Yeah.I did a lot of drugs back in the 70’s and 80’s. In retrospect, I see my experiences as mostly positive. I haven’t used anything illegal in decades because I had a business, a wife, a kid, a mortgage and really didn’t have the time for it anymore. Seems like the natural course of events to me. I’ve had conversations with old friends from back in the day and they all support legalizing reefer. But bring up coke, meth, LSD, Mescaline (still don’t know what that was) or heroin and they all turn into Dick Nixon because, you know, that shit is dangerous. Some of these people actually sold me this shit.
      To the extent that legalizing marijuana will put a small dent in the WOD I am delighted. But the idea that it is evidence of a resurgence of classical liberalism is, I’m afraid, wishful thinking

    3. It’s not the imprisoning of people for possessing or even selling MJ that I’m concerned about… it’s the Vice Mafia Squad using MJ as an excuse for no-knock raids, caninicide, harassment of minorities and legalized looting. Drug abuse needs to go back to being a medical problem instead of a criminal problem. (Yeah, I know, good luck with prying police, prison guards and Big Pharma away from their cash cow.)

  5. I’m hoping someone brought a bag of Doritos the size of a parade float.

  6. The perennial political problem this issue has is the unseemliness of fun. The advocates are seen to want to engage in something frivolous, i.e. their own enjoyment, while it’s supposed to be, “Ask not what your country can do for you….” That attitude wouldn’t’ve been enough to get pot banned, but it is enough to enormously slow down repeal, such that it’s taking a super-majority.

  7. “I smoke weed and am a good person”

    That’s on my family crest.

    1. Mine too, sans the ‘good person’ clause.

  8. Wish I had some weed right now. Cuomo, speaking at the DNC, is the worst, most annoying speaker I’ve heard since the Republican convention.

    1. Don’t I know how awful he is, but good god did you catch Sanders the other day?!

      1. With the obvious caveat that content is not what I’m judging, yes, I did. It was the first time I’d really sat and listened to him. I didn’t think he was bad, but that deal with jabbing his finger in time with his words would get annoying really fast.

        Just listened to Pelosi (guess I’m a masochist). She was almost as bad as Cuomo. Frankly, I expected the speechifying skills of the pols at this level to be terrific. I’ll never have that expectation again.

        I listened to several Republicans’ speeches last week (not all of them). They were uniformly dismal. Even more dismal when you consider the rich cornucopia of subjects and positions that are so easily criticized on the other side.

        1. Cuomo used to work in my office building. He is exactly what you would imagine in person.

        2. I am amazed that anyone with sense can watch that stuff. Reading the platforms is all I can stomach. Fortunately, it’s all that matters.

          1. Fortunately, it’s all that matters.

            Yes, nothing matters quite like the document that nobody who’s actually running for election wrote or is under any obligation to obey.

        3. People get to that level via cronyism not by any kind of talent or skills.

  9. Look, i’m just saying tho…. this Jill Stein thing.

    not cool yo.

  10. a large group of self-professed potheads blazing up in plain view of the police ? and thanking those same police for being “cool”

    ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? The Pig Was Cool

  11. I don’t smoke weed and I’m an incredible asshole. let us criminalize not smoking the chronic.

  12. They say they smoke pot and are good people. Wrong. Democrats are neither good, nor are they people. Just soulless things to be cleansed from society before we lose all our freedoms to their “progressivism”.

  13. The anti-air conditioning people terrify me.

    1. lolwut? That’s truly evil.

    2. Yesterday, I replaced an AC unit in a foyer directly above a boiler room. It needs a working AC unit, you know?
      I took the old one (just a window unit) back to my shop and took it apart. Cleaned out the inside of the fins , which you can’t clean unless you take it apart. Worked great. Promptly installed it in the window of the shop.
      OMG. AC is the greatest invention since cheese.

  14. Bad link to the Democratic platform plank on jailing hippies, mexicanos and afro-types and confiscating their homes, autos and bank accounts for weed. What is clear is that the Kenyan and Bill’s wife both believe in prohibition, asset-forfeiture and mandatory minimums, NOT repeal and freedom.
    BTW, I am willing to trade a plain-text GO Pee Mein Kampf platform for a People’s Democratic State platform in similar format.

  15. I Smoke Weed and I’m a Good Person an asshole. But the two things have nothing to do with each other.

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  17. So wait, the police actually did their jobs and helped to keep the peace without infringing on activities that hurt no one? Imagine that. It’s enough to actually give a guy hope.

    The bottom line is that MJ is going to be legal soon. Colorado, in particular, has shown that it can be done in a way that not only keeps people’s choices intact but also limits the ammo of the prohibition crowd. Living in Utah means my state will be one of, if not the last to jump on the bandwagon unless they can see the dollar signs from taxation. Luckily the Mormons do love their money.

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