Congress, Pass The Joint! Rally at the U.S. Capitol

CONGRESS, PASS THE JOINT!

CONGRESS, PASS THE JOINT!

We recently got news that the Senate’s budget for the District of Columbia still contains the tyrannical Harris Rider. This means that DC’s federal budget will go to conference committee in order to hammer out the differences between the House version (which has the Harris Rider removed) and the Senate version of the federal budget. We also have word that House leadership will not seek the removal this rider in conference committee. This means DC is being thrown under the bus again and will likely allow the Harris Rider to remain in the budget for the next year. This also means that both Councilmember Grosso’s legalization bill and the Mayor’s legalization bill will not be able to move forward for at least another year!

WE DON’T HAVE TO SIT QUIETLY AND LET CONGRESS PUT OFF MARIJUANA LEGISLATION!

Join us on the East Lawn of the U.S. Capitol at 11:30am on Tuesday, October 8, 2019 to demand Congress pass meaningful cannabis reform legislation! We are calling the demonstration,”Congress, Pass the Joint! Rally at the U.S. Capitol.” Please join us during your lunch break!

But it’s not only DC residents getting thrown under the bus. It’s EVERYONE IN THE UNITED STATES. More than half the states in the United States have passed laws allowing some form of medical cannabis, but Congress has refused to legislate. The entire West Coast of the U.S. has legalized cannabis, but adults can’t legally take their cannabis across state lines.  Worse, right now there is an epidemic of toxic THC cartridges plaguing the United States, but instead of passing meaningful legislation to regulate cannabis and cannabis products, Congress has done what they are really good at: nothing. Remember how during alcohol prohibition there used to be stories of people going blind and/or dying because of knock-off alcohol? Sounds like history is repeating itself thanks to congressional inaction. This week the House passed the banking bill, which lays the foundation for legal cannabis businesses, but the Republican-controlled Senate has yet to take it up. Congress will continue to do nothing unless we demand action! What are they waiting for? CONGRESS, PASS THE JOINT!

We have Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) confirmed to speak and we will reach out to other members of Congress, the Mayor, and cannabis-friendly DC Councilmembers. Out of respect to the Congresswoman, this will be a NO SMOKING / NO CONSUMPTION demonstration. We do not anticipate any arrests and have applied for permits from the U.S. Capitol Police (a first for DCMJ!).

TITLE: CONGRESS, PASS THE JOINT!
TIME: 11:30am to 1pm EST
DATE: Tuesday, October 8, 2019
LOCATION: East Lawn of the U.S. Capitol, near the intersection of Independence Ave. SE and 1st Street SE.
NEAREST METRO: Capitol South (Orange / Blue / Silver Lines)
PARKING: On-street is very limited around the Capitol. Cab or Ride Share is best.


***MEDIA ADVISORY – ATTN Video & Photo Desks – Cannabis advocates to hold demonstration on East Lawn of U.S. Capitol at 11:30am, Tuesday, October 8, 2019***

Cannabis Groups Pressure Senate to Stop Stonewalling

51 Foot Long Joint Makes First Appearance on Capitol Hill. Members of Congress Invited to Speak.

WASHINGTON, DC – Leading cannabis advocacy and educational organization DCMJ (District of Columbia Marijuana Justice) and its sister organizations will announce Tuesday it will target the Senate in a new front in its effort to get Congress to end its obstructionist policies toward passing legalization legislation.

To hammer home its message, DCMJ will break out its giant 51-foot inflatable joint at the lunchtime rally outside the U.S. Capitol, dubbed “Congress, Pass the Joint.” The rally marks the first time DCMJ will be joined by affiliates COMJ, MDMJ and VAMJ (Colorado, Maryland and Virginia, respectively) in a multi-state effort to pressure the Senate to:

• Remove the midnight rider from the FY2020 Financial Services Act and General Government Appropriations Act (S. 2524) that prevents cannabis commerce and taxation in the District of Columbia. Originally introduced by Rep. Andy Harris Rider (R-MD) in late 2014, the social policy rider was removed from the FY2020 House appropriations legislation, but added in the Senate’s appropriations legislation.

• Pass the SAFE Banking Act (S.1200) that would open up the federally regulated banking system to the cannabis community

• And ultimately pass the Marijuana Justice Act (S. 597 / HR 1456) that will fully legalize cannabis in the United States

“All the evidence points to the Senate majority leadership blocking cannabis legalization laws at this point,” said Adam Eidinger, of DCMJ and Brother Davids, an environmentally conscious non-profit cannabis company. “To demonstrate we are serious about ending the gridlock, we will target vulnerable Republican senators in the 2020 elections from states that have passed legalization laws.”

DCMJ and its sister group MDMJ are not new to politically targeting anti-cannabis lawmakers. In 2018, the community cannabis groups put “boots on the ground” to campaign against Rep. Andy Harris Rider (R-MD). Political professionals who credit MDMJ with indirectly helping to defeat former House Rules Committee Chairman Pete Sessions (R-TX) last year have lauded the anti-Harris campaign. Tens of thousands of dollars in prohibitionist money that went to Harris and Harris-supported third party organizations was diverted from Sessions, money he badly needed in that closely contested race.

“It was fear that led to the poor decision by some Republicans to fund Harris over Sessions. It was MDMJ’s activity on the ground that put the fear into the GOP,” says Kris Furnish, cofounder of MDMJ, “We intend to replicate that effort in states like Colorado and Maine between now and November 2020.”

AJ Dawson, founder of Colorado Marijuana Justice, noted that it’s time to go after lawmakers who claim to be pro-legalization but have done little more that lip service to curb the prohibitionist policies imposed by obstructionist Senate GOP leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY).

“We can no longer accept the behavior of the enablers who allow McConnell to block legalization bills from even coming up for a vote by the full Senate,” Dawson said. “That is the message we will send to Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO): Get your party in order. It’s time for action not just words.”

Eidinger called McConnell’s legalization stonewalling in the Senate “completely out of touch with the majority of the mainstream in the U.S,” and emphasized there is a new economy that is languishing because of the Senate’s inaction.

“Sen. McConnell needs to realize he is holding up job-creation bills by blocking cannabis legislation,” Eidinger said. “This is an industry that would flourish in his beloved Kentucky, but he’s stuck in some time bubble that doesn’t allow him to have a clear vision forward.”

Confirmed speakers will include Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC), along with the leaders of the legalization groups.

DCMJ was founded in 2013 to advocate for cannabis users, growers, and their families. To learn more about DCMJ visit www.dcmj.org or view the demonstration’s Facebook Event Page.

###

Congressional Seed-In

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, March 8, 2018

CONTACT:
ADAM EIDINGER (202)744-2671
Adam@DCMJ.org

“Congressional Seed-In” Announced for April 2, 2019

Citizens to Lawfully Give Viable Cannabis Seeds to Members of Congress to Demand Federal Legislation to Grow Cannabis At Home

No Current Legislation in Congress Explicitly Legalizes Home Cultivation as Corporate Lobby Grab Leaves Many Americans No Way Grow

WASHINGTON, DC – On Tuesday, April 2, 2019, cannabis reform advocates from DC Marijuana Justice (“DCMJ”), Maryland Marijuana Justice (“MDMJ”), and Virginia Marijuana Justice (“VAMJ”) will descend on Capitol Hill to lawfully give away cannabis seeds to members of Congress and their staff, 21 years of age and older. The action is to call for cannabis consumer-friendly legislation that permits adults to grow cannabis in the comfort and privacy of their homes & backyards.

“As full legalization & descheduling of cannabis approaches cannabis consumers & medical patients must be able to travel throughout the United States without fear of arrest, detainment, or harassment,” says Dawn Lee-Carty, Founder of Speak Life, a mom and founder of Speak Life, an organization dedicated to educating parents and legislators on the benefits of cannabis. Ms. Lee-Carty came to advocate the use of CBD, a non-psychoactive chemical compound found in cannabis, and THC after pharmaceuticals failed to adequately treat her epileptic 11 year old daughter. Due to the federal prohibitions on cannabis, Ms. Lee-Carty cannot travel with her daughters medicine.

After voters in the District of Columbia approved Initiative 71 in November 2014 and Congress approved the law in February 2015, all adults aged 21 years of age or older can legally grow & possess small amounts cannabis in the District of Columbia. With the annual spring planting taking place after the last frost in late April, the “Congressional Seed-In” aims to help members of Congress and their staff lawfully start their cannabis gardens in the District of Columbia. Outdoor cannabis requires cannabis to be grown in cycle with the seasons, so a timely spring planting is integral to the success of the crop. However, not every American is afforded the right to grow their own cannabis. Instead many Americans are forced to buy their cannabis from dispensaries, which costs as much as 10 times more than home grown cannabis.

“The only legislation we see in the 116th Congress moving is backed by lobbyists to deal with business interests,” says Adam Eidinger, Proposer of Initiative 71 . “We’re going up to the Hill to encourage members of Congress and their staff that they represent more cannabis consumers than cannabis businesses. We want to legally grow cannabis as a basic right and this is frankly more important to me than access to banks or tax reform for huge marijuana businesses,” adds Edinger.

WHO: Members of DCMJ, MDMJ and VAMJ, expert growers, and cannabis reform activists
WHAT: “Congressional Seed-In” – A Seed Giveaway for members of Congress and their staff
WHEN: April 2, 2019, 11:00 am until 4:20 pm – Ending Rally Near Capitol Steps on East side
WHERE: All Congressional Offices in Washington, DC
WHY: Citizens demand meaningful legislation that fully ends prohibition cannabis cultivation for every adult and allows the movement of cannabis between all States.

“I don’t want cannabis grown using nuclear or coal power. I want it grown using natural sunlight. The current system of using costly warehouses to grow cannabis plants under synthetic light using synthetic chemicals is bad for consumers and bad for the environment. There is a better way,” says Ms. Lee-Carty, who currently grows using LED technology, but would prefer to grow her daughter’s cannabis outdoors..

“The age of utilizing expensive warehouses to grow cannabis is a relic of prohibition and DCMJ & MDMJ believe that cannabis should return to the fields from which it was formerly grown,” says MDMJ co-founder Kris Furnish. “Congress and state leaders have been standing in the way of cannabis consumer friendly reform, while poll after poll show that the American public fully supports the full legalization of cannabis, including home grow.

ABOUT DCMJ
Since its founding in 2013, DCMJ has lead the nation in creative and high-profile cannabis reform activism. After introducing and passing ballot initiative 71, which legalized the possession and cultivation of cannabis in the District of Columbia, DCMJ organized two large seed giveaways that provided all adults the means to grow cannabis for themselves. Since then DCMJ has deployed giant 51’ inflatable joints outside the White House, the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, Times Square in New York City, the 2016 Presidential Debates, and Boston’s Freedom Rally, as well as distributing over 10,000 joints of District of Columbia home grown cannabis at the Inauguration of President Donald Trump to most recently, attempting to distribute 1,227 joints at the congressional “Joint Session” in 2017, where U.S. Capitol Police unlawfully arrested seven DCMJ activists. All charges were dropped the following day. The “Congressional Seed-In” is DCMJ’s fourth annual “Reschedule 4/20,” day of action to highlight the need for meaningful cannabis reform legislation in the United States. In 2018 and 2019, aligned organizations MDMJ & VAMJ were formed to advocate for cannabis reform in Maryland and Virginia.

###

CLICK HERE TO RSVP ON FACEBOOK!

CANCELLED – DCMJ & MDMJ Beach Day

Due to Hurricane Florence, we are cancelling the DCMJ & MDMJ Beach Day! Please sign up for our email list to find out about our latest plans!


Join us in Ocean City on Sunday, September 16, 2018

SAVE THE DATE!! >>> September 16

On the Sunday, September 16, we’re heading out to Ocean City for a sandy summit! We’re inviting all cannabis activists and candidates for elected office in the DDMV (that’s Delaware, DC, Maryland, and Virginia!) to join us for some sunshine, voter registration, music, swimming, and informal cannabis policy discussion.

Bring your finest cannabis schwag (no, not ditch weed, but tshirts, shorts, umbrellas, flags, etc. emblazoned with cannabis botany) and celebrate the end of summer and the coming end of cannabis prohibition.  We should have more logistical information, like a Ride Share Board, ready soon. If you can drive from DC to OC and have a few extra spots in your car, you should help out!! Please take a moment and invite your friends to the DCMJ & MDMJ Beach Day!

A Fair Shot – Representation for Taxation

Join us on Tuesday, March 27 for A Fair Shot - Representation for Taxation

*MEDIA ADVISORY: Cannabis advocates to host a “Fair Shot Popup at the John A. Wilson Building on Tuesday, March 27, 2018*

DC Cannabis Business Association and DCMJ call on the District Council to take action on cannabis

Advocates will hold rally outside Wilson A. Building and lawfully share cannabis outside District Council Chambers

WASHINGTON, DC— Cannabis advocates from the newly-formed DC Cannabis Business Association (“DCCBA”) and DCMJ will hold a rally and cannabis popup at the John A. Wilson Building at 9am, Tuesday, March 27, 2018. Outraged by the increasing number of cannabis-related arrests and the inability for District residents operate legal cannabis businesses, advocates are demanding immediate action by the District Council. Advocates are calling for the District Council to pass legislation that opens the medical cannabis program to home-based businesses, implement the immediate expungement of all former cannabis crimes legalized under Initiative 71, and demand members of the District Council lobby opposing members of Congress for the repeal of the Harris Rider from the federal budget for the District of Columbia.

“I want to pay taxes,” says Lisa Scott, a founding member of the DC Cannabis Business Association, and owner of the small business “Bud Appétit,” which specializes in cannabis-infused food and beverage consulting. “The District Government is sitting on it’s hands when it comes to cannabis reform and in doing so they are leaving behind hundreds, if not thousands, of African-American small business owners who want to contribute to the betterment of the District of Columbia. Moreover, the District government is not doing enough to repair the records of thousands of its citizens who were caught up in the failed war on drugs.”

“While the Harris Rider deals only with ‘recreational’ cannabis, the District Council is free to pass legislation that opens up the overtly restrictive medical cannabis program to allow more small-business owners to participate,” explains Adam Eidinger, co-founder of DCMJ and proposer of Initiative 71. “If a District resident wants to bring their extra homegrown cannabis to a local farmers market, they should be able sell it to any adult without fear of arrest. All cannabis is medical to me and just because unelected members of Congress think otherwise, doesn’t mean the District Council should not stand up for residents and encourage ‘ganjapreneurship.’ That’s why we are calling for our elected officials to go to the Hill and meet with members of Congress to lobby for the removal of the tyrannical Harris Rider.”

Initiative 71 allows adults to possess up to 2 ounces of cannabis and give up to an ounce away to other adults. There is nothing in the law that says adults cannot legally give out cannabis inside District government buildings. Advocates intend to share cannabis inside the John A. Wilson building to make the point that they’d rather be able to legally sell cannabis and pay taxes than the current system of “popups,” which are temporary cannabis markets that the District Council created with their misguided legislation that bans private cannabis events. The Harris Rider, prevents the District Council from passing any laws that reduce penalties for “recreational” cannabis, including the opening of non-medical cannabis dispensaries.


WHAT: “A Fair Shot- Representation for Taxation” DCMJ & DCCBA Rally and Cannabis Popup
WHO: DCMJ, DCCBA, and cannabis reform supporters.
WHEN: 9:00am to 10:15am EST, Tuesday, March 27, 2018
Rally: 9:00am to 9:30am
Cannabis Popup: 9:30am to 10:15am
WHERE: Rally: Outside 1350 Pennsylvania Ave. NW
Cannabis Popup: Outside of District Council Chambers, Room 500, 1350 Pennsylvania Ave. NW


Click here to RSVP on Facebook

Bring It Home – National Days of Action

Take Part in the Bring It Home Campaign this April!

During the first week of April 2018 join cannabis activists from around the country for three days of demonstrations. The “Bring It Home” Campaign aims to highlight the fact that even states with some forms of legalized cannabis, many adults cannot legally “Bring It Home”

MONDAY, APRIL 2 – Adults receiving government assistance for their housing can be evicted from their homes for the possession, use, and cultivation of cannabis. Although 29 states and the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico have legalized some form of cannabis, as long as the federal government classifies cannabis as Schedule One substance, adults cannot use, possess, or grow cannabis if they receive any government assistance. This needs to change!
LOCATION = Your Nearest HUD Building
Not sure where they are? Check: https://www.hud.gov/program_o…/field_policy_mgt/localoffices

CONFIRMED DEMONSTRATIONS:
Baltimore, MD – 3pm @ 417 E Fayette St
Washington, DC – 12pm @ 451 7th St SW + 4pm @ 1133 North Capitol St NE

===

TUESDAY, APRIL 3 – Veterans who valiantly served in the United States military are denied the right to obtain a recommendation for cannabis from the VA doctor. Although 30 states and the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico have legalized some form of cannabis, as long as the federal government classifies cannabis as Schedule One substance, Veterans cannot use, possess, or grow cannabis at any VA Building. This needs to change!
LOCATION = Your Nearest VA Building
Not sure where they are? Check: https://www.va.gov/statedva.htm

CONFIRMED DEMONSTRATIONS:
Baltimore, MD – 3pm @ 31 Hopkins Plaza
Washington, DC – 12pm @ 810 Vermont Ave NW
===

WEDNESDAY, APRIL 4 – Students in states with legalized cannabis can be kicked out of their dorms for cannabis. Worse, at many universities students have already paid for calendar year’s housing and if they are caught with cannabis they must find housing off-campus and do not get their money back from the university. Although 30 states and the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico have legalized some form of cannabis, as long as the federal government classifies cannabis as Schedule One substance, students cannot use, possess, or grow cannabis at any and could be ruin their educational prospects if they Bring It Home. This needs to change!

LOCATION = ONLINE TWITTER STORM! It’s time for students sound off!  More details soon!

===


We plan to add confirmed Bring It Home demonstrations to this page. We request organizers create Facebook Event and send us the link so we can update this page with the time, date, and location. Together we are going to change these outdated policies so everyone can have safe and equal access to cannabis!

Please spread the word by sharing this page and by RSVPing to the Bring It Home Facebook Event.

Questions? Have a confirmed Bring It Home demonstration? Please contact: BringItHome@DCMJ.org

Philippines Stop the Drug War Killings! Free Senator de Lima!

Philippines Stop the Drug War Killings! Free Senator de Lima!

Philippines Stop the Drug War Killings! Free Senator de Lima!

Join us Wednesday, February 28 for a lunchtime demonstration!

Since Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte took office in June 2016, police and vigilantes have murdered more than 16,000 purported drug users and sellers in a bloody campaign of extrajudicial killings. Duterte, who has repeatedly promised to kill hundreds of thousands of people, and who has bragged about killing people himself, is now being investigated by the International Criminal Court for alleged Crimes Against Humanity.

A year ago, the Philippines’ leading critic of Duterte’s violence, Senator Leila de Lima, was jailed on fabricated drug charges. The charges were apparently brought in retaliation after de Lima had a confessed former member of Duterte’s Davao Death Squad testify in the Senate.

On Wednesday, February 28th, please join Filipino Americans, drug policy reformers and other human rights defenders to call for an end to extrajudicial killings and for Senator de Lima to be freed. We will rally from noon to 1:00pm in front of the Philippines Embassy, 1600 Massachusetts Avenue NW in Washington, DC. Among other things, the event will feature a street theater performance in which attendees will symbolically free a Senator de Lima figure from a realistic mobile model of a prison cell.

Please email David Borden to get involved in preparations for this demonstration or for other information, and please spread the word! Participating organizations so far include:

    • Amnesty International USA
    • Criminal Justice Policy Foundation
    • DCMJ
    • Ecumenical Advocacy Network on the Philippines
    • Filipino American Human Rights Alliance
    • Institute for Policy Studies Drug Policy Project
    • StoptheDrugWar.org
    • Students for Sensible Drug Policy

Click here to RSVP on Facebook


Watch the Livestream:

Cannabis and the Law: The Impact of Marijuana Legalization on the Drug War, Public Policy, and Social Justice


2018 UDC Law Review Symposium:

Cannabis and the Law: The Impact of Marijuana Legalization on the Drug War, Public Policy, and Social Justice

Thursday, March 22, 2018 – 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM
Breakfast 9:30 AM / Reception 4:00 to 6:00 PM

UDC David A. Clarke School of Law
4340 Connecticut Ave NW
Washington, DC 20008
202.274.7400

Presented by the UDC Law Review in partnership with the UDC David A. Clarke School of Law

Click here to Register

#Reschedule420 on 4/24 at the U.S. Capitol

DCMJ Statement on Arrests at Smoke-In on Capitol Steps

WASHINGTON, D.C. — DCMJ, the advocacy and educational organization that spearheaded Initiative 71, issued the following statement regarding #Reschedule420 Smoke-In at the Capitol on April 24, 2017.

Statement from Nikolas Schiller, co-founder of DCMJ:
Cannabis legalization is a bipartisan issue that Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Speaker Ryan, and Congress can no longer afford to ignore. There is overwhelming support for ending cannabis prohibition, and 71% of Americans are against a federal crackdown.

This is a peaceful and responsible movement that is demanding Congress to stop cherry picking when to respect states rights. We want Congress to do their job and respect the will of the voters.

Unfortunately, the reality is that sometimes our laws don’t match what the American people want. We have many examples of this throughout our nation’s history. It is time Congress ends unjust laws that ‘criminalize’ tens of thousands every year. However, these injustices cannot stand.

We will continue our work and we not be silenced. It’s high time, Congress get in line with the overwhelming number of citizens who support legalizing a plant scientifically far less harmful than alcohol.


Support for Ending Cannabis Prohibition Has Never Been Higher
According to an October 2016 Gallup poll, American support for legalizing cannabis is at 60 percent, the highest it’s been in 47 years, and a 2015 Harris poll found a staggering 81 percent of Americans support legalization of cannabis for medical use. Seventy-one percent of Americans across party lines and age groups oppose a federal crackdown on state-legal programs. Today, there are 29 states and the District of Columbia that have chosen to create regulated cannabis programs, including four of the five most populated states in the nation. More than 20 percent of the U.S. population lives in states that allow adults 21 and older to legally consume cannabis, and more than 60 percent of the population lives in a state where medical cannabis access is legal.

###

In case you missed it, at yesterday’s White House Press Briefing spokesman Sean Spicer finally answered a question about cannabis. His response was not good. Please watch it for yourself.

It’s Why We’re Rescheduling 420 Again This Year!

New date & time: Gather at HIGH NOON, on Monday, April 24, 2017 with mass civil disobedience at 4:20pm
New location: The east side of the U.S. Capitol

This is a National Call to Action!
No More Waiting!! Congress Deschedule Cannabis NOW!

While other marijuana advocacy groups are issuing statements, we are calling on them to join us in a national demonstration on April 24, 2017. The powers that be ignore our statements and petitions but they cannot ignore us when we gather in large numbers. Therefore we need every cannabis supporter to join us at the Capitol! 

We are urging those of you reading this who live outside of DC, to reschedule your calendar, come to DC, and smoke out the office of your member of Congress. Locally, we have our eyes set on a few members of Congress that need to smell the change we desire.

Congress is not listening to us and they need to be reminded that America’s cannabis laws need to be changed NOW. Not with some lame bandaid of a law that lets states do their own thing or rescheduling that prohibits plant access, but a comprehensive law that allows you to take your cannabis in a car from DC to California without fear of arrest.

Cannabis needs to be fully removed from the Controlled Substances Act, not pushed down to Schedule II into the hands of Big Pharma!

PLEASE NOTE: Possession of cannabis on the Capitol grounds is not legal. Consuming cannabis anywhere in DC outside of a home is not legal either. But sitting quietly while the Trump administration rolls back our freedoms is not something we plan to do. We need to be loud and proud!

The Inaugural #Trump420 showed that cannabis reform is not a partisan issue. There are millions of Trump supporters who support the full legalization of cannabis, and we are encouraging people of all political stripes to join this national mobilization!

Yesterday’s poll showed a majority of Americans want cannabis reform. But unless we loudly demand it, we are going to get stuck with another shitty law that benefits corporations and not the American people.

We expect arrests to take place on Reschedule420 this year, but we know that our cause is just. We know that the best way to make America great again is not enforcing the outdated Controlled Substances Act, but providing Americans the liberty to choose cannabis for relaxation, enjoyment, and medicine.

Moreover, we can argue that ALL CANNABIS USE IS MEDICAL. If you use it to relax, that is medical. If you use it to put yourself into a better mood, that is medical. The argument that only some sick people can use cannabis while other adults are not sick enough to deserve it is deeply flawed. Many people use cannabis in order to not get sick!

Please share this link with your friends and RSVP on Facebook.

NEWS ADVISORY

Contact: Press@DCMJ.org

Smoke-In on Capitol Steps

Legalization Advocates to Lead #Reschedule420 Demonstration to Call on Congress to End the War on Cannabis, Uphold Rohrabacher–Farr Amendment, and Respect DC and States Rights

WASHINGTON, DC – DCMJ, the organization that spearheaded Initiative 71, which legalized cannabis in the District of Columbia, will lead a #Reschedule420 Smoke-In at the Capitol on Monday, April 24th. The demonstration, which is scheduled to take place four days after DCMJ’s 1st Annual Congressional #JointSession—a free cannabis giveaway—will urge Congress to support Ending Federal Marijuana Prohibition Act of 2017 (H.R. 1227), which would put an end to the federal prohibition of cannabis and enable states to decide their own path regarding cannabis policy. DCMJ will also call on Congress to uphold the Rohrabacher–Farr amendment, which prohibits the Department of Justice and the Drug Enforcement Agency from using funds to step in or interfere with state medical cannabis laws. The demonstration will place a much-needed spotlight on the Congressional inaction and ‘delay’ in addressing our nation’s ineffective drug policies. Additionally, DCMJ will call on Speaker Ryan and Congress to remove the DC budget rider that prevents the DC government from sensibly regulating adult-use stores and cafes.

WHAT: #Reschedule420 Smoke-In on Capitol Steps (House Side)
WHO: DCMJ volunteers and cannabis legalization advocates
WHEN: Monday, April 24, 2017 High noon to 4:20 p.m.
WHERE: Eastside of Capitol on the House steps side of Capitol, Washington, D.C.
*Note: Media interested in videotaping DCMJ rolling joints for the congressional giveaway should send an email to Press@DCMJ.org to schedule an appointment.

“Congress and Speaker Ryan can’t afford to ignore the vast majority of Americans, who want to end cannabis prohibition—so we are headed to Capitol Hill to finally have our issues heard,” said Adam Eidinger, co-founder of DMCJ. “Congressional inaction and leaving harmful laws on the books isn’t anyway to run a government—it is irresponsible. Arbitrarily respecting states rights and walking all over DC’s isn’t setting at the bar very high either. Speaker Ryan and others members of Congress need to stop hiding behind the special-interest smokescreen preventing responsible cannabis laws from being enacted. If these members of Congress ask themselves, who has the most to lose from ending the war on cannabis—it isn’t the American people.”

Ending Federal Marijuana Prohibition Act of 2017 (H.R. 1227)
DCMJ will request that Speaker Ryan and members of Congress support the Ending Federal Marijuana Prohibition Act of 2017 (H.R. 1227) proposed by Virginia Rep. Tom Garrett (R) and co-sponsored by Hawaii Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard (D), which would remove cannabis from a Schedule I classification under the Controlled Substances Act.

DCMJ will ask lawmakers to entirely remove cannabis, a plant far less harmful than alcohol and tobacco, from a Schedule I classification under the Controlled Substances Act. Today, Congressional inaction has left tens of thousands of individuals incarcerated, stripped millions of Americans of their right to vote, left otherwise law-abiding citizens with burdensome criminal records, and patients & veterans without access to alternative life-saving treatments that have been known to improve overall quality of life.

Rohrabacher–Farr Amendment
DCMJ will request that Congress reaffirm the Rohrabacher–Farr amendment, which prohibits the Department of Justice and the Drug Enforcement Agency from using funds to step in or interfere with state medical cannabis laws. The amendment has protected nearly two-thirds of the country and cannabis consumers from federal legal intervention. However, the Rohrabacher–Farr amendment must be approved by Congress every year in the federal budget. DCMJ will request that the amendment is upheld under the new Congressional budget.

Protect DC and States Rights
In November 2014, DCMJ-backed Initiative 71 passed by 70 percent of DC voters. Even before Initiative 71 passed, the Council of the District of Columbia proposed a framework, which was approved to regulate the legal sale and taxation of cannabis, which would have enable DC to sensibly regulate adult-use cannabis. However, Representative Andy Harris (R-Md.)—who has long opposed DC’s independence and unsuccessfully worked to block DC’s decriminalization of cannabis—worked to sneak in a ‘rider’ as part of a deal to avoid a government shutdown. The Harris rider has prevented the DC government from spending any of the District’s locally-raised funds to regulate adult-use stores and cafes. This has resulted in the loss of millions of tax dollars, and potentially thousands of jobs.

High Personal Costs and A Waste of Tax Dollars
While some states have implemented responsible cannabis laws, others have decriminalized possession of small amounts of cannabis, and other states still make cannabis possession a misdemeanor or even a felony. Data shows that current our laws are enforced in racially biased ways. Coupled with enforcement issues and a system that coerces guilty pleas, the consequences can be devastating for individuals charged with cannabis ‘crimes.’ The loss of a job, the right to vote, court fines, and other penalties, along with the stigma of a conviction when trying to secure work, an apartment or home or accessing benefits and other programs can be devastating to individuals and their families. Additionally, the cost to identify, arrest, prosecute, sentence, incarcerate, and supervise people for cannabis possession are tens of millions of tax dollars that could be better spent.

Support for Ending Cannabis Prohibition Has Never Been Higher
According to an October 2016 Gallup poll, American support for legalizing cannabis is at 60 percent, the highest it’s been in 47 years, and a 2015 Harris poll found a staggering 81 percent of Americans support legalization of cannabis for medical use. Seventy-one percent of Americans across party lines and age groups oppose a federal crackdown on state-legal programs. Today, there are 29 states and the District of Columbia that have chosen to create regulated cannabis programs, including four of the five most populated states in the nation. More than 20 percent of the U.S. population lives in states that allow adults 21 and older to legally consume cannabis, and more than 60 percent of the population lives in a state where medical cannabis access is legal.

To learn more about DCMJ visit DCMJ.org; follow DCMJ on Twitter at @DCMJ2014; like DCMJ on
Facebook
.

###