DCMJ Statement on White House Firings

March 19, 2021

ADAM EIDINGER (202) 744-2671
KEN BAZINET (202) 660-2449

***Statement to the News Media***

White House Firings for past Cannabis Use are an Outrage

DCMJ Urges President Biden to Rethink Position on Cannabis Administration is Sending Wrong Message to Americans

Statement from Adam Eidinger, co-founder of District of Columbia Marijuana Justice (DCMJ), in response to the White House firing staffers for past cannabis use:

“We were outraged to learn that the White House is using past cannabis use as a cause for dismissal of staffers. It would be an understatement to call reports of these dismissals arbitrary. We are quite certain that the White House does not fire staffers for use of alcohol, a scientifically proven deadly and harmful substance. We’re confident there is even alcohol stored away in the White House, and not just in the residence. The White House is clearly ignoring that voters in the District of Columbia have legalized cannabis, and that nearby Virginia and Maryland allow for medical use of cannabis. If the White House wants the best and brightest working there on behalf of the American people, it needs to tolerate all viewpoints and lifestyle choices, including the legal use of cannabis.

By taking these punitive actions, the White House is informally asking current and future applicants to lie. Lies are the enemy of democracy. If applicants know that being honest about past or current lawful cannabis use will prevent them from working at the White House, then they have no recourse but to lie about their current or past cannabis use. This is bad public policy and President Biden should understand that the destructive and failed War on Drugs does nothing but hurt the American people, especially people of color.

We expected that President Biden would evolve from this twisted 20th century view of cannabis use and adopt the positions that an overwhelming majority of Americans have embraced. From ending the use of cannabis laws in the abhorrent practice of racial profiling, to clearing the way for conclusive research into all the medical applications for cannabis, to keeping the government from intruding further into private lives, the majority of Americans want an end now to cannabis prohibition.

We want to see this administration succeed in righting many wrongs. We’ve even tried to be helpful. Our upcoming ‘Joints For Jabs’ cannabis giveaway is in direct response to the administration’s ‘Go Big’ effort to get Americans vaccinated against COVID-19. We are quite confident the message behind ‘Joints for Jabs’ is reaching a significant portion of supporters and non-supporters of the president.

This White House needs to think about finding a new place for itself in the legalization movement and avoid an unnecessary confrontation with a key bloc in the Democrats’ political base. With these firings, the administration is sending out a dangerous message in this era of cannabis enlightenment that is going to force a meaningful reaction by those threatened by the actions of this White House.

We call upon President Biden to use his executive power to de-schedule cannabis immediately. There are millions of Americans living in states with legal cannabis that should not be excluded from working in the White House, or a job of any kind in public service. If you need advice on how to truly embrace ‘Marijuana Justice,’ we urge you to consult your vice president, who as a senator introduced the Marijuana Justice Act.”


Since its founding in 2013, DCMJ has led the nation in creative and high-profile cannabis reform activism. After introducing and passing DC’s Initiative 71 in 2014, which voters legalized the possession and cultivation of cannabis, DCMJ organized three large seed giveaways that provided all adults & Congressional staffers the means to grow cannabis for themselves, deployed giant 51’ inflatable joints outside the Capitol, the White House, the 2016 Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, Times Square in New York City, the 2016 Presidential Debates, Annapolis Statehouse and Boston’s Freedom Rally, as well as distributing over 10,000 joints of District of Columbia homegrown cannabis at the Inauguration of President Donald Trump, and 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). DCMJ will distribute 5,000 joints at vaccination sites across the District of Columbia on April 20, 2021 in conjunction with its upcoming “Joints For Jabs” cannabis giveaway. In 2018, 2019, and 2021, aligned organizations MDMJ, VAMJ , COMJ, and NYMJ were formed to advocate for cannabis reform in Maryland, Virginia, Colorado, and New York. DCMJ demands cannabis be removed from the Controlled Substances Act and all Americans are given the right to grow cannabis in the safety and privacy of their homes.


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