I’m DanKres (pronounced: Dank- Rez). I am the new Editor of Cannabis Culture Magazine. I accept this job with full respect for the effort it demands, the sacrifices made by our movement’s trailblazers and the relentless joy of inclusion in this tribe.
You are all badasses and I am happy to be counted among your numbers.
Yesterday, the office of our magazine and the Pot TV studio was raided by members of the Vancouver Police Department. Production computers were seized, archives breached and the personal laptop of one of my colleagues, stolen.
CCHQ, the head shop next door to our studio, was also raided. The locks were cut from the security gate, the doors forced open and windows obstructed with paper before any of our staff had arrived at work. When the people came to do their jobs, they were forcibly blocked from entry. Police seized files, computers, iPods, and cell phones (many of these taken from the lost & found). Our vapor lounge, a safe space of 18+ public congregation, was also ransacked. Art was removed from the walls, property smashed and in a heartless tragedy, the four cats who live there were traumatized.
No arrests were made in Vancouver, nor were any charges laid. It was a smash and grab. A fear tactic committed by bullies nearly two years after the voting public declared their support for a campaign platform founded on an end to cannabis prohibition. And it happened in a community where 147 people overdosed on prescription opioids last week, 14 of them fatally. These lives were cut short, and perhaps if they had been encouraged to share in the jam nights, yoga and positive vibes of our space some of this loss of life could have been prevented. There are no overdoses at CCHQ, yet the police are too busy displaying their might in a peaceful place to protect or serve those dying in the streets.
The only question now is, why?
As near as I can figure, and the evidence supports it. Their motive is control and compliance with the rules, even after the public has declared those rules obsolete. This is about creating a climate conducive to monopoly and big business. It is not about protecting children from the cannabis boogeyman or discouraging organized crime. It is about branding scarlet letters on all those who do not strictly adhere to the system imposed upon us. Their power was granted by the people, and now the people have realized they were lied to. Prime Minister Trudeau’s post-election victory “hope over fear” statement fuelled headlines nationwide, but through action and inaction, the sentiment has proven as easily dispersed as a puff of smoke exhaled into the high winds of reality.
The attack by the VPD was part of a co-ordinated nationwide politically motivated assault on Cannabis Culture locations in Toronto, Ottawa, and Vancouver. The operation was codenamed “Operation Gator,” and in its wake, our founders, Jodie & Marc Emery, as well as three more peaceful people remain imprisoned in Toronto.
Despite all this, today will be business as usual. Our stores are open. Simple, beautiful tasks and pleasant transactions are being completed by kind people in honor of a commitment to freedom from oppression and support for our brethren in unjust bondage.
There is no shame in what we do and infinite power in our solidarity.
Our history is formative, and our audience of millions of people just like you, are critical thinkers who understand a law is not just simply because it is a law. You are and will continue to be respected in all content published here. This magazine was born to fit the needs of people yearning for relevant information, humorous review and expert analysis of the mystical potentials at play in the Cannabis world.
Under my guidance, this mission statement will remain fulfilled.
#freejodie #freemarc #stoptheraids #endprohibition #noprisonforpot
Photo courtesy Darryl Dyck and The Canadian Free Press