A few things Washington State Democrats ought to do next


Eminently achievable: Retroactive clearance of all marijuana misdemeanors.

Seattle actually already did this through City Attorney Pete Holmes earlier this year.

It may be more difficult for the legislature to do, or they might need to direct the state attorney, but unlike HB 1260 – 2017-18: “Providing for the vacation of misdemeanor marijuana offense convictions“, the focus should be on providing for this automatically instead of requiring often under-informed people to go through a process that necessarily is time-consuming and often costly.

Stretch goal: Extend clearances to felonies

This is a tougher sell because folk with say only “bad guys” got felonies but we know that’s not true, and undoing this harm would have an even bigger impact on housing and jobs.

Whether ounces or pounds, people shouldn’t continue to be punished for something we reward folk for doing now (i.e. Uncle Ike’s vs who used to stand on 23rd and Union)

Ultimate goal: Divert recreational cannabis tax funds to a stipend for people with marijuana convictions

The exact formula would involve some tough math, but it ought to be proportional to their punishments: the most severe the punishment, the larger the ongoing payments.

While this would be helpful to lots of people whose lives were derailed by what we now know to be unjust convictions, it’s going to make a radical difference in the lives of the poorest people. Because the drug war has disproportionately targeted people of color, so will the benefits.

Continue reading “A few things Washington State Democrats ought to do next”

You can’t ‘Just Say No’ to weed because pot smokers are like cat owners

The other day, I went to one of the nearby recreational marijuana shops and got a few things for the house. None of us smoke regularly, but we do host people a lot, and a guest’s recent description of me as ‘quite the homemaker’ is sadly accurate.

When a friend came over later,  I remembered he didn’t enjoy smoking, so I said that if he’d like to try it again some time, one of the strains I’d gotten was 0% THC, high percentage CBD and would be physically relaxing without being psychoactive. I told him how such an edible had helped me when I pinched a nerve and needed an affordable muscle-relaxer.

He declined then mentioned how he’s noticed that weed seems to be the only drug that people will continue to push on a person after they’ve heard you don’t want to do it.

After thinking on it, I think I figured out why.

Continue reading “You can’t ‘Just Say No’ to weed because pot smokers are like cat owners”