You’d never know it, reading High Times Magazine today, that they once thought I was the great hope of the movement.
In the July 1992 High Times, then-editor Steve Hager said at the outset of a 4-page interview: “Several years ago, the Canadian government banned the sale of High Times. Emery responded to this law by ordering thousands of additional copies and advertising their sale at his bookshop, City Lights. Twice he has flown me to Canada for autograph sessions, and each time he’s made calls to local police requesting his own arrest. In today’s world, Emery is an anomaly: a successful businessman who campaigns for individual rights.”
But now, High Times disses me in each issue with cheesy anonymous complaints in their letters column, or with bogus reviews of our world-renown seed business. They even urge me to fold up the big top and leave the movement! Since 1992, my organizations (including CC) have contributed over $2,000,000 toward court battles, ballot initiatives, jailed individuals, rallies, conferences, marches, elections ? all involving cannabis or the drug war! There is virtually no drug reform group or organization in North America that has not received some assistance from us. Compare that with HT‘s sorrowful absence of any accomplishments in making America a better place for the cannabis community in their 30-year history.
After Canadian Parliament passed a law in 1988 banning all printed matter that promotes or advocates the use of any illicit drug, High Times was not permitted into Canada. I was the lone individual who challenged the ban by distributing HT, even in front of police. No one, including HT themselves, made any attempt to challenge this law in court except me. By the end of 1995, I went to court to have the law deemed unconstitutional. After the court victory had made HT legal again in Canada, HT commenced distribution of their magazine north of the border. And to this day, I have never received a note or word of thanks in this regard!
In 2000, Cannabis Culture reviewed and wrote about the fake buds that International Oddities and Riverdale Organics distribute through ads in HT (CC #25, May/June 2000). These two mail order advertisers are intimately connected to HT and are the principal sources of revenue for them. The activities of IO and RO involve deceptive and virtually fraudulent promotion of fake marijuana appearing ‘buds’ to the impressionable and vulnerable market target of 15 ? 24 year olds.
Since that article was published in CC, HT has been unrelenting in their hostility towards us. Our print run (92,000) is approaching the 130,000 copies HT prints each issue, and they’re very threatened by our growing success and world-wide acknowledgement.
High Times should be worried. HT has been a regular source of information for DEA raids on hundreds, perhaps thousands, of HT readers, advertisers, and clients over the years. That began with Operation Green Merchant in 1987, whereby HT advertisers were ordered to turn over their shipping lists to the DEA. Many HT readers faced busts & prison as a consequence of buying HT and ordering from their advertisers.
In 2003, HT advertisers and partners were targeted again, with devastating impact on the glass pipe and bong industry. On page 78, CC reporter Paul DeRienzo uncovers the damage wrought by DEA operations against the cannabis community, and in particular HT magazine. HT imploded and was nearly obliterated!
Currently, the US Congress has been investigating the industries that develop and sell urine-test avoidance kits like The Whizzinator or Number 1, which provide synthetic urine free of implicating substances. Now these industries are facing government harassment to withdraw their promotion from marijuana related magazines, and cease distribution of their valuable products. Order now while you still can!
As we report in Hydropanic on page 110, the hydroponic industry that allies itself with the healing herb is also facing pressure from government and within the industry.
And selling paraphernalia, ephemera, and even political advocacy can get PayPal to regard you as trouble, freezing your assets. Find out how the devil is in the details on page 34.
As a community, we get harassed every which way, but sometimes it’s fatal. In Tazed & Abused on page 83, CC journalists Peter Gorman and Reverend Damuzi investigate deaths of drug users caused by the police’s favorite non-lethal pacifier.
This issue is the first fully edited CC by Jodie Giesz-Ramsay and myself. We really pride ourselves on the investigative activist journalism in this issue, but if it gets a little heavy, you can wash down the serious stuff with our Cannabis Vodka Party on page 38!
Kottonmouth Kings are our featured musical act, captured live on stage, in the grow room, and with some hot babes, on page 28. Our vivacious Assistant Editor Jodie is the centerfold; the BC Marijuana Party Bookstore girls are on the cover. CC Magazine is also proud to reprise work by one of the most influential artists of the early 70’s, Vaughn Bode, with a touching coda by his prot?g? and son, Mark, on page 68.
Critics and fans alike often ask ? with differing intonation perhaps ? What have you been smoking?! Well, a day’s worth of buds from the seed desk, full-melt bubblehash, and fruit and veggie pipes are some clues about how we inspire ourselves to put out this magazine! And you, the reader, inspire us, with your great pics for Show Your Grow on page 58 – 59 this issue. Tell me what you think of this, my first Cannabis Culture edited completely by Jodie and I. We’re proud of it, and hope you are proud of us.