Pought Thots

The Reader’s Complaints
I just read “The Editor’s Complaint,” in CC#15. Listen, my good man, you have every right to be pissed off! Don’t hold anything back!

There is a phrase called “righteous indignation” or “justifiable anger.” Everybody wants someone else to take the heat on controversial topics. I’m not the first person to say that people get the government or drug laws they deserve.?I meet elderly High Society people all the time who say they secretly liked Lenny Bruce or even Billie Holliday. Well, where were you when they were getting arrested? How come you hide their CDs when friends come to visit?

I can certainly understand that some misguided people think all you folks do at the magazine is “party.” One big stoner fest, dude.

As the editor of my own neighborhood newsletter here in San Francisco, I understand that Dana Larsen, editor of Cannabis Culture, is the “engine” behind getting people to meet deadlines and getting reluctant businesses to advertise in your “controversial” magazine. People, by nature, are sluggish, lazy lumps. The need to “kick butt” is constant.

Go ahead and get good and mad. To quote a famous San Francisco writer, William Saroyan, “When you laugh, laugh like hell, and when you get angry, get good and angry. Try to be alive. You will be dead soon enough.”

Peace, love and hemp,
Brian “Wally” Wallace

Thanks for the kind words. Note however, that this magazine is by no means a one-man show, but we are a small crew. Suzanne, Mike, Dan, Tia, Patty and Marc all play important roles in producing this fine publication.
? DL

Just writting to let you know that you are not the only one feeling sort of pessimistic about the cannabis culture. It seems like Canadians don’t feel too strongly about any issues regarding cannabis culture unless they are incarcerated themselves or someone in their family is affected by cancer or aids…

I know it is pretty pitiful but that’s the way Canadians in general are. I think there is also the issues concerning the Black Market ? too many individuals make damn good money exploiting the system.

Oh! Canada.

Sincerly yours,

Actually, I don’t feel pessimistic, I am very optimistic that ultimately we will overcome all adversity and legalize all forms of cannabis around the world. I do however, sometimes get frustrated at the apathy and hypocrisy I see around me.
? DL

I must say, first, that I think you’re doing an excellent job producing a fine magazine in a hostile environment. It saddens me that part of that hostility comes from the very public that should be supporting you.

You are, I think, a magazine devoted to spreading information about an illegal substance or two. Given that, it is hard to imagine that other societal boundaries will never be crossed. A little nudity, a little porn, whatever. The important thing is that you are able to fulfill your mandate without too much fear of bankruptcy.

If I don’t like it, I can flip the page and not purchase the product. It seems to me that readers must want this stuff, or you wouldn’t be getting advertisers.

To those readers who are offended: don’t buy, don’t call, don’t look. To those advertisers who are afraid to damage their reputation: we are not children. We are adults who can tell where one ad begins and another ends, and we don’t believe in guilt by association (or else they might arrest my mom). And to you, Dana: carry on!

Peace in the New Year!

Yours, Chris

One devoted reader sent us some photos of a CC Collage by his talented roommate. The photos don’t do justice to the huge 3′ x 6′ design. Too bad he had to cut up all those valuable old backissues to create this masterpiece!

Hemp, marijuana, or credibility?

Reading “The Editor’s Complaint” in issue #15 saddened me. My heart goes out to you. I work very closely with Mark Lathrop, owner of Monadnock Hemporium (New Hampshire’s only all-hemp store) and also founder of New Hampshire’s Hemp Council. We are also very frustrated. Many people who come into the Monadnock Hemporium are very supportive with their words, but not their dollars. For 3 years Mark has used thousands of his own dollars to operate the Monadnock Hemporium. He is almost out of funds.

We on the New Hampshire Hemp Council (NHHC) have been working very hard to get hemp reintroduced into New Hampshire agriculture. This coming season we will be reintroducing a bill into our state legislature, which lost by only 11 votes last year (175-164).

Our biggest hurdle is the Drug Enforcement Agency, which thwarted our efforts last year by testifying that our real intention was to have outdoor hemp fields to hide pot crops in.

So you see, it’s a matter of association. We have to be very careful. If Mark were to put in a line of paraphernalia with his hemp goods, he could make some money because that’s what would sell. However, that would compromise our position and Mark’s credibility.

We do agree with you: cannabis should not be prohibited, no matter which strain you are talking about. We also are aware that most cannabis supporters/users are using more than one variety. But given our position, I can understand why hempsters would shy away from associating with your magazine.

By the way, in his article “How to Open a Hemp Store” did Marc tell how to get people to buy your hemp goods?!

Lynne Wolf
New Hampshire Hemp Council

In Marc’s article on opening a hemp store, he explained that opening a hemp-only store would not be profitable, and recommended an opening day inventory of $3000 hemp products, $3000 books and magazines on pot, and $5000 smoking devices.

Ultimately, the “hemp movement” is made up almost entirely of marijuana smokers. The vast majority of those who buy, use and promote hemp products are pot-people, and although hemp is breaking into the mainstream, this will still be the case for some time in the future.

This being true, it seems poor business practice for any hemp store or organization to alienate the majority of their potential supporters and customers by entirely disavowing marijuana. You believe that it would undermine your efforts to promote industrial hemp if you were to sell smoking paraphernalia in the store. Yet it seems to me that a successful store selling paraphernalia and hempen goods is far more of a benefit to the cannabis cause than a hemp-only store which is going out of business.

The people who come into a “hemp store” are going to be almost all pot-smokers. They will buy hemp lip balms and hempen jeans along with their pipes and bongs, but they’ll come because they love pot. The non-smoker won’t buy her hemp lotions and jeans from your store, she’ll go to the Body Shop and Bootlegger. Ironically, the more successful hemp becomes in the mainstream, the harder it will be to run a hemp-only store, since all of your merchandise will be available through bigger chains, and at a better price too!

I think that you need to re-evaluate your position. There’s many ways to promote industrial hemp, but unfortunately a hemp-only retail store is not a viable one. Although activists are still playing an important role in the re-introduction of hemp worldwide, it is not in providing a retail outlet for hemp goods, but rather in educating farmers and lobbying the government. There is room for employment and enterprise in the hemp-only world, but it’s a much more rarified and difficult environment for the small-business entrepeneur.

If you enjoy running a business and want to succeed financially, then I strongly recommend you begin selling a nice selection of bongs, pipes and other smoking paraphernalia in your store. Make as much money as you possibly can selling anything and everything to do with cannabis culture, then use those profits to promote whichever forms of cannabis you prefer. Get ads in the paper promoting hemp, make hefty donations to the Hemp Council, buy off politicians, etc.

A thriving cannabis store will serve as a rallying point and backdrop for other activists in the community, as well as providing employment and a source of income for special projects. Don’t let your store and your activist spirit go under because of your fear of what the bad guys might say about you. It will not hurt your cause to own a thriving and successful cannabis business.


An appreciative reader

Good Day.

I’ve never written a letter in my life ? I’m not good with words ? so I’ll just use a sentence from Jenn’s letter in the last Pought Thots: “Your dedication, intelligence, hard work and bravery are not going unappreciated.”

I’m a subscriber from the beginning an I really enjoy reading your magazine. Your last issue was just great. Lots of good information.
Here’s a (very) small token of my appreciation. Thank you for doing what you do and keep on keeping on.

Peace and joy,

Leonard’s token of appreciation was a $20 donation and 2 chunks of fine hash. The hash was enjoyed by most of the CC team, while the money helped one of our contributors buy groceries for another few days.

Thanks Leonard, such kind sentiments help make it all worthwhile.

? DL