I’m Selling Marijuana!

The Harm Reduction Club began selling marijuana openly in Vancouver on
October 19, 1997.

“I’m Selling Marijuana!”

By Karlis

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October 19 marked another victory for the marijuana anti-prohibitionists in Vancouver. This date was the first day for the Harm Reduction Club, a cannabis buyer’s club in Vancouver. Unlike the well-known club in San Francisco, the HRC does not require a doctor’s prescription to purchase marijuana. Only proof of age showing the buyer is over 13 years old and club membership is required. Setting a good example for other legal drug sellers, club membership includes a promise not to operate “heavy machinery” while impaired.

To start the club off, a large public marijuana sale was held on Commercial Drive. Several hundred people showed up to publicly purchase marijuana, while others smoked, talked, made music, laughed and played in the cold air and warm sunshine. Police attended the event and watched from the perimiter of the park, eventually leaving before the event was over. Many reporters were also on the scene, inlcuding video cameras from the local BCTV and UTV, and the national CBC.

Over a hundred people became members of the club, and during the day
about 1 pound of marijuana was publicly sold in the park. With membership, members could buy a one gram joint of “very good bud” for $10, or a smaller $5 version, one per person. While the police stood by, club founder David Malmo-Levine could be heard to sing loudly “I’m selling marijuana!” so there would be no confusion as to what the commotion was about. No arrests or charges were made by police.

The ad accompanying this article is excerpted from a full page ad that appeared in the
Vancouver weekly newspaper “Terminal City”. The full ad is at least eight
times as long and goes into the history of the drug war and the current
situation with the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act. For more info email
[email protected], or call (604) 253-6357

Harm Reduction Club

Free Market Tam-Tam

by David Malmo-Levine, taken from Terminal City.


Free speech. Free music. Cheap pot.


Grandview Park (William & Commercial Drive)

For more info call 253-6357

Pot will be openly sold, but only on and after the 19th, and only to club members.

In 1993, the hemp movement began to remove the shame from “possession” by
holding rallies where many people could commit that crime, shamelessly. The
government’s reaction was to back off.

Well, it’s now time to do the same thing with “trafficking”. The Harm
Reduction Club is an experiment. Right now it’s just a person who knows he
has little to lose by risking five years less a day for trafficking, rather
than letting the shame remain unchallenged, thereby risking a lifetime in a
Singapore-style police state – or perhaps even an environmental nightmare.

Let’s get together and remove the last remaining bits of shame associated
with marijuana, using the profits from the sale of good organic herb to:

  1. provide free legal services
  2. fund education projects to teach people smarter smoking strategies
  3. provide medicinal and nutritional hemp information
  4. promote soft, natural drugs over hard, synthetic ones
  5. teach drugless methods of getting high
  6. create an atmosphere of safety and tolerance to enjoy marijuana in
  7. educate the public about the dangers of prohibition.

These are the seven goals of the Club.

Any money collected above a living wage will be put towards the seven goals
of the club. In addition, in exchange for cooperation from the government,
we will donate 10% of all earnings to cash strapped charities – the needle
exchange and the medical marijuana buyers club, for example.

But if the government continues to arrest us for something that they
themselves have indicated is a health issue, well then that 10% will go to
legal defense – possession, trafficking, causing a disturbance, resisting
arrest, toplessness, whatever – you’re covered.

That’s right, you heard correctly, free legal advice and defense, a
safer-smarter-smoking guide and a gram sized joint for just 20 bucks.
When’s the next time you’re gonna hear an offer like that?

Join the club.

The club will kick off it’s illegal-yet-noble activities at the “Free
Market Tam Tam” on Saturday, October 19th, at 3pm sharp, in Grandview Park
on William Street and Commercial Drive.

There will be an open microphone, and the club invites anyone who disagrees
with legalization to come out and give reasons why, and see if it can
withstand criticism (and see if the criticism can withstand criticism….
it shouldn’t take too long to exhaust all the arguments to prohibition and
get to the bottom of this mess).

If it turns out that someone possesses a compelling reason why we shouldn’t
sell pot to anyone over the age of thirteen who a) signs a pledge not to
operate heavy machinery while impaired on our marijuana, and b) agrees to
read our “safer-smarter-smoking” kit – hey, we’ll bow to reason. We’ll take
our buds and split. The shame of being a pot “pusher” will remain. Big
Brother will have won the day.

About the rally: Interstellar Rootcellar, SKAB, Wes and a number of other
musicians will perform some acoustic sets, and the club will smoke-up any
other musicians or drummers who perform that day. We will also pass the
joint to any videographers who hang out all day, ready to preserve and
distribute the magic moment if and when the cops decide to bust us.

Bring Cameras, food, pot etc. to sell (this is, after all, a free market)
but leave your aggression, hard drugs (especially alcohol) and shame at
home. Be prepared to hug anyone who is getting arrested without reason – we
may be stoned, but we’re not going down so easy.

"Washing one's hands of the conflict between the powerful and the powerless
means to side with the powerful, not to be neutral."

-Paulo Friere

A new world is growing inside the old one.

The club could end up becoming the path to freedom for many people,
economically and politically. The medical marijuana buyers club in San
Francisco had 90 employees – four people got hired full time just to weigh
out buds. The Vancouver Harm Reduction Club itself is non-profit and
collectively run.

The government is really to blame for this enterprise. They denied us any
legal mode of evolution nor justification for a lack of evolution. If they
use force, it will be because they lack reason. If the police get caught
on film using force without reason, prohibition is done for. If they leave
us alone, we’ll out-grow the synthetics. The only way they can win is to
intimidate people away from joining up.

The Harm Reduction Club non-transaction info line is 253-6357. Pot will
openly be sold, but only on/after the 19th and only to club members.

Almost everybody knows the drugwar is a joke. The real crime is that good,
potent, organic bud isn’t easily available from a reliable, responsible
source. How many times in your life will you again be given the opportunity
to party, dance, sing, smoke pot and hug people in order to fight the
powers-that-be and save the economy and ecology?

See you on the 19th.

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