The problem with Amendment X is this: it is a solution in search of a problem and the fix is worse than the original problem.
It is treasonable for state legislators to look to the feds to control state hemp. CO was the first 10th Amendment hemp state, starting planting a year before the 2014 Farm Bill allowed it, and the only 10th Amendment hemp state until WV. While many us have taken heat publicly from CDA SecAg Sinning for pushing for 1% since 2015, the smart way to approach it (the way actual farmers would have) would have been a fix-it bill for hemp: 1) 1% max THC with testing of the whole plant, not just the top few inches, and 2) within the first 50 days of planting, instead of for max THC (CDA does all that just to appease the DEA, who Sinning admits badgers him).
The HIA hemp association with a Pres quoted as saying “I hope Colorado hemp fails” because of its 10th Amendment approach is pushing the bill hard, as are others in Big Hemp. The usual ethically-challenged suspects who try to corral the various hempen cats to say only what their masters demand are pimping it hard too. Beegle, Cait, Beatty, et al. That alone tells me something is rotten, as is the harsh way these “political geniuses” build consensus among hemp’s best and brightest who just happen to disagree with them. It’s a special interest bill aggressively foisted on us by the bad actors in the industry. It sets a very, very bad precedent, the leg undoing the voter’s will in the Con just for special interests, which include those protecting Canadian hemp investments.
The only wild card is if Colorado leg changes the definition to be 1% max THC, that would be permissible under Amendment X. But why include the feds if that’s the case?
In my opinion, Veronica Carpio has been the subject of a hate campaign by an ex- hemp lobbyist in CO. He’s a misogynistic twat who has tried to get pot felons banned from hemp in CO for 3 years at least. I push back like this:
Marijuana felons are the unheralded heroes of the hemp and marijuana movements. Without them working in great danger for years to satisfy a market monopolized by the government, none of this happens. Not hemp, not medical marijuana, not the bloated stock market valuations making the rich richer.
Therefore, one of the most-abhorrent ideas is to ban them from industrial hemp and the legal marijuana industry. Even the Hemp Industries Association itself was started by a pot felon, and a drug defense attorney, before it started taking orders from an anti-pot zealot. A CEO of the a public hemp company is a notorious marijuana felon who used to run close to 200 boats, as is “Silver Tour” Robert Platshorn of Florida, and Marc Emery of Canada. This discredited provision may rear its ugly head again in DC with the considering of the Farm Bill and various hemp bills, but has also re-surfaced in Colorado, of all places.
That it targets ONLY pot felons is particularly cruel, as there is zero public safety logic in it: still allowed are baby rapers, mother murderers, and violent armed robbers, only those merely growing or selling a plant are banned. This appears to be yet another attempt to hurt US hemp and put it at a disadvantage against hemp from Canada, likely by US investors in Canadian hemp. Introducing manufactured controversy in Colorado, a male lobbyist has been floating his pet misogynistic proposal since at least 2014, to target one person only: an effective female hemp activist and farmer. Marijuana felons have had their lives turned upside-down to satisfy private prison industry investors with an unconstitutional law, and have already paid their debt to society. Penalizing them this way is against public policy, many states even restore their vote. They deserve a hand up, not a heel down.
Make no mistake, those running the hemp associations and their lobbyists would throw felons under the bus in a heartbeat to get even only hemp fiber legal federally. They’ve told me as much. A cheap win to fatten their coffers and prove relevance as they daily become less so. But we should all cross the finish line together, especially those who have paid their debt to society already for merely growing a plant.
Past Prohibition is a sin of our fathers, but continued Prohibition is all on us.
To push-back, I suggest the following:
1) expunge the marijuana felony convictions of anyone convicted in Colorado, automatically and without application by the convicted. There, that will take care of the problem.
2) But I wouldn’t stop there; as victims of the War on Marijuana, those with pot felonies should be given preference in an application for a any type of marijuana license, in any legal state.
3) Pot felons applying to grow hemp in Colorado should have application fees waived, as well as for veterans growing hemp.
4) We have rehabilitation programs for felons of all kinds, so why not pot felons? The state of Colorado should appropriate some of the marijuana tax revenue to fund 3) above as well as a program to teach them how to grow CBD hemp flowers, or how to breed, or how to start a hemp processing business heavy on the logistics they once used to smuggle pot.
Copyright 2018 Richard Rose, all rights reserved.
What I’ve written about HIA, an association I helped gain legitimacy and get on its feet in the ’90s:
I’m confused: you say “HIA is helping us”, but which HIA is that? After all, the worst parts of the hemp law are the very same ones they’ve been pushing in CA and HI since 2009. No CBD, mandatory certified cultivars, no pruning of individual plants, only dense field style, no female-only, no indoor. Anti-“everything that made Colorado hemp such a success.” How can you possibly think that suddenly after all these years they saw the light and error of their ways and now oppose the very provisions which they originally proposed? Especially because the 3 seats they have on the IHAB refuse to encourage actual production of hemp in California.
Which HIA are we talking about? The one that killed permanently the birdseed market for us in 1999 all over a lie to help a non-member, one who slagged HIA every chance it got? Or the HIA that sued to stop DEA’s legalization of hemp foods in 2001, saying then “DEA lies” but today quoting DEA like it was an Oracle Of Truth? The HIA started by a pot felon but which today has no position on marijuana legalization and is silent about pot felons in hemp? The HIA which kicks out then starts a whispered campaign of slander against its founders? Or the “Bronutivahoba Association ” which works only for a few of its members?
The HIA which was hating on CBD for years until it saw the money in it, and is now All About That CBD? Or the HIA behind mandating certified cultivars even where they don’t exist like So Cal and Hawaii, thereby killing two birds with one stone: protecting Canadian hemp while rewarding their friends selling certified seed. The HIA with a President trying to silence Colorado hemp’s most effective activists, or the HIA kicking out elders and founders who don’t agree with their lies and aren’t afraid to say so? The HIA responsible for recreational pot being more legal than hemp in 8 states? The HIA arguing against no regs on WA hemp, or the HIA pretending to speak for the entire Movement while secretly doing everything to slow that Movement in order to protect Canadian investments? The fiber group HIA suing DEA over food with a straight face despite the advice against it by the guy doing 90% of the hemp food business, or the HIA that made bank off killing hemp foods for 2.5 years when DEA paid its attorneys fees?
Apologists, which HIA are you referring to that’s going to fix the mess they themselves made? The HIA <this close> to throwing out an anti-THC zealot for slagging it to NAIHC, but then let him take over instead despite an unprecedented community warning in High Times in May 2000? The HIA which encouraged theft of and blocked trademark of the industry’s best two brand names? The HIA with a President who makes her career using patient-shaming of pioneers for sheer financial gain, or the HIA with a President screwing her competitor, a Colorado hemp farmer submitting seed to Cornell? The HIA President who sends me messages like this to me: “You are so mentally ill that I have compassion for you; but you need to know that I am always sure to make clear to every fine hempster in several countries that your sociopathic malignant narcissist ass has the insanity to attempt to connect with that your are [sic] literally bat shit fucking crazy and mean-spirited pathological liar to boot. You are a sorry sociopath.”? Or the HIA which gives me the first awards for food in 1997, then today acts like it was just a drunken one-night stand? The HIA with the President who prepares legal cases for a living but uses Veronica’s use of the courts for character assassination? I’m confused, surely we can’t be talking about the same HIA here?
The HIA with the President who proudly tells Dope Magazine “We used to say it didn’t take any inputs,” Beckerman said of hemp weed. “We used to shout it from the rooftops, ‘it doesn’t need this, it doesn’t need that,’ and frankly none of it was true!”? Or the HIA with a President who says CBD is a bubble and CBD is Schedule 1 and HIA v DEA 2004 doesn’t apply to CBD, in order to slow the CBD Hemp Movement? Or is it the HIA always pushing for research-only for mankind’s oldest crop by universities with zero experience in Cannabis but beholden to the Feds, while other nations are free to grow?
Chris and I have been talking about this stuff for years and were there at the beginning of HIA, we helped make it a force, a legitimate trade association. And we know where the bodies are buried, the rank stuff which has never been made public. Yet you relative-noobs, knowing NONE of it, are always telling us to STFU. Why is that? To present a “Unified Voice?” But what if that voice has the timbre of Gilbert Gottfried and spouts nonsense designed to slow us down? Few of you have the integrity to do other than what you’re told by people very bad for the Movement. You say “we must unite and speak the truth,” then when we do it’s “STFU.” You don’t want the truth, you can’t handle the truth. You want a carefully-manipulated lie which is sold to you as The Truth, and you buy like a hipster at an Apple store the day the iPhone X is released.
If HIA wants to pretend to be The Voice of the Industry, then it has no business excluding legitimate voices within that industry while covering up ill behavior toxic to the Movement. How we get there is as important as getting there. If we can’t have leaders who are ethical and tell the truth no matter what, perhaps it’s time for new leaders?