Marc Emery’s US Federal Prison blog #16: Letter to Jodie

Marc and Jodie, July 4th 2010Marc and Jodie, July 4th 2010Dearest Jodie: After I saw you Sunday for our perfectly lovely visit (smashing dress you had on), I was informed I was moving from unit DB to another unit. I thought, uh-oh, what did I do, but it wasn’t punishment at all, it was to unit FA, which is kind of a waiting unit for inmates who have been designated to their federal prison. So I’ve been designated!

I probably pack-out in about 4-6 weeks, but they don’t tell you when you go, or where you’re designated to. Wish I knew! I sure hope it’s Lompoc near Santa Barbara in California. The prisons I can be sent to have to have INS, or Immigration and Naturalization Services, because I’m a foreigner. The options include California, New Mexico, Texas, Mississippi, Georgia, North Carolina, Ohio, or Pennsylvania. I’m hoping for Lompoc in California. [September 29th update: Marc has been designated to Taft FCI in California.]

Once I get packed-out, by the way, you can follow me by putting my name and inmate number in the inmate tracker. That should let you know where I am once I’m on the road, as it were, because there might be up to several days where I have no ability to phone or email you.

I should have called you from unit DB when I was told after our visit at 10:30am Sunday that I had to move immediately, because it took 24 hours for my phone and email situation here at FA to be set-up and I know you were so worried to not hear from me. But I’m okay, miss! Just make sure people know that any mail they want to send to me should be addressed to Unit FA from now on.

I know my cellie JD was disappointed to see me go; we got along great, listening to old music stations like the Vancouver Island 100.3 (The Q) and guessing who the artist was and when it came out originally, making food at night, and sharing all our commissary and books and newspapers. I was disappointed for a few moments, but really, I’m glad to be moving along in the process.

My Canadian transfer application is in to Public Safety Minister Vic Toews. Our friend Dan Grice’s meeting with Toews sounded very positive, and I’m hoping the money bomb for Saturday October 16th, for my new US lawyer (transfer application specialist), gets promoted heavily to raise as much of that $8,500 as possible. Loretta Nall in Alabama is donating the $100 she wants to give me to that effort, and I asked her to tell everyone she knows to help out, even if its $5 or $10 or $25. It all adds up and it all helps. Every day I get letters from people wondering how they can help us, and I’d have to say giving a little bit to help pay this new lawyer is what we both really need.

You can donate through the Cannabis Culture online store by clicking here.

Each step along the way brings me closer to you! As of July 29, that was the last day charges could be filed against me from any other jurisdiction (5-year statute of limitations) in the US on the seed selling. Then on September 10, the sentencing went as we’d agreed under the 11(c)1(c) plea agreement, so that was done. Then we got the transfer application in to the Canadian government the same day, and we have probably have had over 2,000 letters sent in to encourage Toews to bring me back to Canada – plus people stop him everywhere and bring it up, and he is always saying that he’ll bring me back as long as I promise not to break any laws. I’m on record as promising quite clearly not to re-offend, and for my 5 years on bail I certainly did not, so he has every good reason, politically and in the interest of “public safety”, to bring me back home.

Now I’m in the first stage of getting transferred out to my designated US prison, and once there, I put in my US transfer application. So I’m excited! I have my own cell for now, and that’s nice. In the near 5 months I’ve been here (I have 200 days served so far with my Canadian 66 days credit), I’ve shared a cell and never had my own, except when I was in solitary for 21 days! So last night was the first day with my own cell when I wasn’t being punished. I have sunlight coming into my cell this morning, with the same view I had in solitary of the parking lot and surrounding trees. It’s nice to see the world on a sunny day!

I finished the Nelson Mandela auto-biography, “Long Walk To Freedom”. It’s a great and very inspiring book. Most of it was written when he was in prison. I hope you are working on my autobiographical stories that I’ve written while I am in jail here! I want those stories up at by the third week in October, so please don’t let that project lapse! I know you are busy with the store, your writing and researching, the fundraising and money bomb, visiting me, all the interviews, etc., but I have 15 stories now, plus all my other writings, interview, documentaries, videos, and I so want to have them in one place where people can see all the work and experiences I’ve had in my life that got me to be Prince of Pot. I’m going to quote you a number of sections from Mandela’s book later on, his observations about being in prison and being a freedom fighter and political prisoner are very astute and prescient and it’s a book made for quoting.

The water bottles handed out by Toronto activists (Photo: Oliver Gee)The water bottles handed out by Toronto activists (Photo: Oliver Gee)Today, in the mail, I’m hoping part three of Taylor Branch’s brilliant trilogy on the life and times of Marin Luther King, Jr. arrives, “Canaan’s Edge”. It’s the perfect time for it to arrive, as I’ve completed the first two, and after Mandela’s book I’m excited to finish MLK’s great life story. If it doesn’t arrive, I’m going to read Tom Strong #3, the next book in the great Alan Moore graphic novel.

I’m hoping I start to get people’s photographs of the Marc Emery Support Day on September 18th, especially from Loretta Nall, Addie Clemons, you, Chris Goodwin and others. I want to see what the bottles of “Marc Emery Bong Water” that the activists in Toronto gave out – 2,500 bottles of clean water bought and labeled by my great supporter Khalid and his partners at Pixel Dreams – look like. I would have called it Marc Emery Freedom Water if it were up to me, with subtitles like, “Slake Your Thirst For Freedom” or “Water the seeds of freedom” or “The cool, refreshing taste of liberty”, etc., but they do call themselves the Toronto Hash Mob so a funky title is very much in keeping with their rep. That’s the fun of a decentralized campaign, eh?

My health is good, I loved our two visits on the weekend! Glad you thought my chapter for Barry Cooper’s book on the law (“Never Get Busted Questions & Answers”), “Life in a Federal Prison” was good, and fair. Since you are the editor of that book now, you’ll learn plenty about the law to enhance your credibility as Policing & Crime critic for the BC Green Party. This experience is all part of our education, Mrs. Emery!

I love my fabulous wife, and am excited about making progress in the scheme of things. Every day that goes by is a day I learn something new, write something about my life, and especially it’s one day closer to being with you and sharing our terrific future together! I so want to be your Executive assistant when you get elected to office! “The Speaker recognizes The Honourable Jodie Emery from Vancouver Center” – can’t wait to hear that! It’s so going to happen Miss!

But in the meantime, better get to work on all the things you’ve got to do! I love my Mrs. Emery so much!

Your Husband with tremendous admiration for you,

Marc Emery
Marc Emery

Marc Emery is a Canadian cannabis activist, entrepreneur, and politician. Known to his fans as the Prince of Pot, Emery has been a notable advocate of international cannabis policy reform for decades. Marc is the founding publisher of Cannabis Culture and Pot TV.