Letter to Jodie upon receiving the bad news

Jodie and Marc at D. Ray James prison, March 27thJodie and Marc at D. Ray James prison, March 27thDearest Sweet Wife: Today, April 16th, I have 1,188 days to go until my release date of July 9th, 2014. That includes my 235 days good time credit, so I have to hope I can maintain that good standing to get out by then. That’s 38 months and 3 weeks away, a long time, no doubt, but it was once 60 months. And before that there was five years where you and I anticipated the inevitable extradition and incarceration with anxiety and unspoken dread.

All our time together since you and I became intimate exactly seven years ago this week has been tinted with the certain knowledge I would be going to jail. When you and I got involved in April of 2004, I was facing charges of passing one joint in Saskatoon, a charge that kept me in jail five days just to obtain bail the month before, March 2004. I had been on a university speaking tour across Canada, and after speaking at the University of Saskatchewan campus, 40 of us went to smoke a few joints in the park beside the Bessborough Hotel where I was staying. We were all nestled in the Vimy Ridge memorial pavilion, honouring the soldiers who died in the infamous WW1 battle (fighting for “our freedom” as they say). After we finished, a police officer came by, said he smelled smoke, and asked a 23-year old university student, “Did Mr. Emery pass you the joint?” Yes, the student replied.

On August 19th, 2004, I was convicted of trafficking that one joint, and much to both our shock, was sentenced to three months, 92 days, in Saskatoon Correctional Center. My time there is well documented, and you should resurrect some of the choice jail blogs that I made throughout my time there, especially so they don’t get lost into the cybersphere forever, as those were some of the best writings I had ever done up to that time. Remember, that is where we fell completely in love, if we weren’t already, because each night I would furiously write my thoughts and politics from 10pm to 2am each night, and then after my job in the jail was done from 8am to 2:30pm – I was the janitor of the prison administration center where much of that staff worked, paid $5 a day, the top wage in the inmate job hierarchy – I called Chris Bennett of Pot-TV collect and he would record my voice narrating my writings of the night before. He would put this on a CD and hand it to you, and each night you would painstakingly listen to the disc, line by line, and type it up so it could be read on the internet.

Just as my newsletters I wrote at D. Ray James were read by the staff there, at Saskatoon Correctional, all the staff would read my jail blogs of my time there. When I was vacuuming the carpets around the staff, I would spy out of the corner of my eye them reading the latest entries. It was a passionate retelling of each day there, and all the political, emotional revelations that were going on. A lot seemed to happen in the 62 days there. I went in to court on August 19th, and I thought I would get a $500 fine, but instead was stunned when the judge, after a long speech condemning my bad influence on the community, gave me 3 months. The last words I said as I was handcuffed and lead away immediately after sentencing was, “Three months for one joint!!!????” It was a blazing hot summer day outside that August 19th.

I was released on October 19th into a beautiful snowy blizzard. Your taxi to pick me up was an hour late because of the bad roads. It was cold and the snow fell relentlessly, but there are few days in my life when I was happier. You were there to pick me up at the prison with Dana and Rebecca, and you accompanied me to the various TV and radio stations to give my comments on my highly publicized release. I savoured the food in four different restaurants that day, and then by mid-afternoon, I could wait no longer and we made love in the hotel. I remember that evening I was in the hotel computer room, doing my email, you sitting beside me, and I was speaking on my phone and said “I just got out of jail”, then, noticing a person on the computer beside me, put my hand on his shoulder and said to him, “Don’t worry, it was nothing unsavoury”, and he turned around and said, “I know.” It was Canadian musician Matthew Good, performing that night in Saskatoon, staying at the same hotel, also checking his email.

US transfer application rejection letterUS transfer application rejection letterI bring this jail memory up because yesterday I received the dreadful, but not wholly unexpected, DENIAL of treaty transfer from the US Department of Justice.

I know you had sincere strong hopes that both governments would accept my transfer application. I certainly qualified in all of the criteria set out in the DOJ guidelines, and I had unprecedented political support in Canada – a Senator, 14 Members of Parliament, a Member of the BC Legislature, four city councillors, two mayors, and at least one State Representative. Those are just the elected officials we are aware of whose endorsement for transfer we have copies of. Yet I was refused because of the “seriousness of my offense” and “serious law enforcement concerns”.

Additionally, it would appear my constant critiquing of the US penal system in my newsletters was inferred as a reason for the refusal, as the DOJ referred to my “actions within my control” that caused them to deny me.

DEA chief Karen Tandy always said my arrest was political, in fact, in her statement issued the day of my arrest, she doesn’t actually mention my so-called crime of selling seeds to consenting adults, because that, juxtaposed with being one of the top 46 most wanted in the world, would sound outrageous and absurd. Instead she railed on repeatedly about my political ‘crimes’ in opposing the US federal government war of cannabis.

DEA Head Karen Tandy's statement on MarcDEA Head Karen Tandy’s statement on Marc

“Today’s DEA arrest of Marc Scott Emery, publisher of Cannabis Culture Magazine, and the founder of a marijuana legalization group — is a significant blow not only to the marijuana trafficking trade in the U.S. and Canada, but also to the marijuana legalization movement.

“His marijuana trade and propagandist marijuana magazine have generated nearly $5 million a year in profits that bolstered his trafficking efforts, but those have gone up in smoke today.

“Emery and his organization had been designated as one of the Attorney General’s most wanted international drug trafficking organizational targets — one of only 46 in the world and the only one from Canada.

“Hundreds of thousands of dollars of Emery’s illicit profits are known to have been channeled to marijuana legalization groups active in the United States and Canada. Drug legalization lobbyists now have one less pot of money to rely on.”

When I called you and told you the upsetting news about my transfer application being rejected, you were thunderstruck. I know it was a shock and disappointment, and of course, we both know it’s further punishment because of my life’s work in repealing marijuana prohibition, and for the millions of dollars – not hundreds of thousands as Tandy stated, but millions of dollars – I contributed to the US, Canadian and worldwide repeal movements, and my pride in doing so.

We have no choice but to channel our indignation into the movement. I expect every soldier in our great cause to do their duty. I hope our American friends and supporters will appeal to hold “OBAMA: FREE MARC EMERY” signs, banners, etc. at every opportunity at every rally, gathering, website, Facebook profile, meeting, town hall, sports event, and wherever people gather. I enjoin them to begin a campaign to write the President and urge him to pardon me.

I also urge my American friends to support the Presidential nomination campaigns of Congressman Ron Paul and former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson. These two men are great men, fully behind the repeal of cannabis prohibition, and do not retreat from saying so. They need our full support, in primary votes, in campaign contributions, in volunteer efforts, fundraising, and sign carrying. I cannot stress this too much. Ron Paul was the real man of Hope in 2008, but the false Hope was elected instead. Ron Paul is the greatest man of our time, a champion of the Constitution and has opposed every aspect of the drug war since first elected to Congress in 1974. He is co-sponsor of bills legalizing personal possession of cannabis , industrial hemp, medical marijuana, the Truth in Trials Act, ending the Drug Czar’s budget – simply every aspect of the federal drug war, Ron Paul has opposed it. [Marc’s massive study of all US Congress votes for Cannabis Culture Magazine #63 showed that Ron Paul was the #1 supporter of our culture. View that article here.]

It is my fervent hope that the Republican Presidential ticket for 2012 will be Ron Paul & Gary Johnson as President/Vice-Presidential nominee. Ron Paul is an incredibly decent, honest, ethical man, an intellectual giant and a down-to-earth person. There simply has never been a better candidate for the trust of the people in the last 50 years for the office of President. For our people, our cannabis culture, there simply is no one who comes close. Jodie, if our American people want to honour my life-long struggle to secure their freedom in the face of this prohibition tyranny, they MUST support Ron Paul in his bid for President. [Read more about Ron Paul’s stance on cannabis and the drug war here, here, here, and here.]

My Canadian people must commit themselves to voting in the May 2nd Canadian federal election. It is vital to punish the Conservatives for both extraditing me, and persisting in bringing in legislation to impose mandatory minimum jail sentences and other cruel punishments upon the cannabis culture. Most young people do not vote; this has had, and will have, tragic consequences if that happens May 2nd. I recommend all young people, all Canadians reading this, vote at the earliest advanced poll they can find for their riding, before May 2nd. They must vote for the candidate with the greatest chance of defeating the Conservative. In English Canada, this means voting Liberal or NDP, in French Canada, this means voting for the Bloc or Liberal. This is no time to vote Green; that alas, only helps the Conservative. Certainly, it is not the time in our culture’s history, in our nation’s history, to fail to vote. Think “FREE MARC EMERY – IMPRISON STEPHEN HARPER” and get out and vote.

If they need a push, Jodie, beg them to read my most recent essay, amongst the best works of writing I have ever done, “A Visit by the Grand Inquisitor Himself on the Eve of an Election Call”. If they don’t realize who the Grand Inquisitor in the story is, Jodie, please tell them. Whatever people think of Michael Ignatieff or Jack Layton, they are not evil men. Stephen Harper is evil and death, to our culture particularly, and to Canada certainly. [See “10 Reasons to oppose the Harper candidate in your riding” from Rabble.ca for a great list of why Harper is such a threat to Canada.]

As for us, I hope our wonderful supporters who have been so caring, loving and generous to myself and you will continue to be so kind, you will need the financial help so you can visit every two weeks in Mississippi, and I will need the great uplifting letters I continue to receive. 38 months and three weeks IS a long time, but it is made endurable by the gifts of love and respect I receive from those who take the time to show their support, consideration and understanding.

Send mail or money to Marc

Most of all, my dear sweet Jodie, without you I would be lost, forlorn, and ever so lonely. You are my rock, my pride, you have exceeded all my expectations and have become one of the most respected activists for our glorious cause. Every day you impress me and hundreds of thousands of others by your dedication, passion and eloquence. I live on through you and am dearly proud that you bear my name, Mrs. Jodie Emery. I pray for your well being, and I am not a religious man, but those positive affirmations to the universe make me feel better, and I can only hope that many others will do what they can to help you, when and how they can do so.

I remain, Your honoured husband,
Grateful I have so much, under these circumstances, to still be thankful for,

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.



  1. Anonymous on

    hes a dik thas all there is to it

  2. Anonymous on

    your a pig

  3. Anonymous on

    After the Conservatives executed L. Riel they have never been able to maintain a conservative vote in Quebec.

    It is the Conservatives who allowed marc to be extradited to the US. Let everyone follow Quebec’s lead and all pot smokers never vote for the Conservatives again.

  4. Son of Sam Walton on

    Marc and Jodie –the odds are in today’s computer savvy world that more people know who Marc Emery is than Stephen Harper . . . Something Tells me Harper won’t be remembered like that one guy –the fact that you are in an American prison at this time with our War problems in the Middle East and Mexico –our recession –Event Horizon disaster –and Obama Politics –your in a concrete and steel spotlight that you’ve barely got enough room to move around in yourself –but all the people in the world have plenty of space to see you lying in that cell for this and this reason. If you would have been locked up in the 90’s or 80’s or 70’s for all of this –then the Feds would have won –but they messed up and made you almost like a Martyr –they decided to lock up a popular man with a professional business and website at the height of political deluge that we are all swimming in . . . If Marc could only take a few more steps and tell the world the truth: that the odds are a lot higher that Stephen Harper is a Dallas Cowboy’s Football player whom won the 2011 Super Bowel than for marijuana legalization and activism to be about the right to get high . . . no, the fact that you are an honorary guest in America means something more than a bunch of people wanting a legal buzz (sorry for the accommodations) –tell the people that Marijuana Legalization is about the right of people in the Middle East to not ever have to be near a bombing or to not ever have to drive on a roadside bomb –tell them that marijuana legalization has nothing to do with getting high –but the ability to afford functional and comfortable bullet proof vests –the right to go to school with real teachers whom are secure in their jobs and futures –the right to build a house made out of hemp –pot legalization has more to do with the right to work than it does to spark up another owl –currently in America –the citizens been denied the right to work and we mistake privileges and having various ways to entertain and escape boredom with freedom . . . as soon as pot heads can march on the streets and tell the people the truth that pot legalization has absolutely nothing to do with our protected rights to get high. The epitome of drug or marijuana legalization is about respecting the ideas of Martin Luther King, Jr. and the freedoms of Americans to leave their houses and go to a job of their choosing –their right to buy products made in America –our right to have cleaner land for our children –our right to be a part of building up a great society instead of watching it be torn down in the names of wasted taxes and the helplessness of the incarcerated. Marc –take it a step higher –the first images of marijuana legalization to come to the minds of any man or women whose ever stepped foot outside their own door is financial stability and safety -the right to be an Ameican or Canadian with no war news -with the ignorance that 9/11 never happened since it only happened because of drug money. Do this Marc and the history books will show you to be not only more popular –but more righteous . . . jokes and shameful puns will not be tossed at your entry like they will be to the entries of Harper and others when read by the future generations . . . Many Colleges will require students to do papers and works on you. Interesting how the Government is only making you popular and politically successful –to forever be viewed in a positive light unlike the negative one that Nixon, Hitler, Anslinger etc. have.

  5. Brian on

    Unfortunately I saw this coming from the start. Now it will come down to Marc getting out of there alive. I have said over and over and over….protesting, voting etc. will do NO good whatsoever. Ever. Its going to come down to pitchforks and torches. Old school. Anything less is a complete waste of time.

    Marc, I wish you all the best and my thoughts will be with you everyday until you are released.

  6. Okie Nate on

    We expected nothing less of these Nazi Feds here in Oklahoma. They are trying to make an example of this political prisioner to scare the rest of us. This prision sentence is not about marijuana, it’s about ideas.

    This marijuana fight will not stop at any time! They must let you out one day…remember that…they are bound by law too. Keep ur nose clean and keep up the writing exposing the atrocities of the U.S. government.

    Learn to meditate deeply and learn Yoga, and they will never take your Spirit. Don’t let them break your Spirit, or they win. Keep your Spirit strong. Your Flock is here supporting you everyday!

    Nobel Peace Prize for Marc Emery!

    God Bless Marc, you are in our prayers.

  7. Anonymous on

    It’s obviously colusion between the officals in DC and the conservatives in Canada. Since it was the US that turned it down how do you protest in Canada? It was their perfect solution.

  8. Patrick of Westmorland on

    As the darkness of the denial settles upon our hearts
    our eyes are clouded with tears. Our Prince is in exile
    with little hope of a soon return.

    The war machine has capture our John the Baptist not to be
    let out of their clutches. He is their vodoo doll of sorts
    through their abuse of our beloved leader they inflict their
    cruelty on an entire community.

    But know this, we the devoted soliders will fight on.
    Truth and justice will one day silence their dogs, their guns
    and their lies. They may have won the battle but they will
    Never win the war!

    Even now their war on cannabis consumers is loosing ground State by
    State , Province by Province. Remain strong Prince history is on our side!

  9. jay tee on

    keep up yur spirits marc, them us feds are out to break u n keep movin u around, damn nazi amerikan bastards!! need some lead between the eyeballs to knock some sense into them.

  10. Anonymous on

    once again your incoherent ramblings prove cannabis likely causes brain damage

  11. laffreck on

    Lenny Bruce did a number in which his Mother and Aunt were constantly being
    victimized by perverts who kept leaping out from behind the bushes and EXPOSING themselves. Finally he had to tell them: “It’s not the perverts,
    IT’S THE BUSHES. Get rid of the bushes.”
    In this case, the Americans are the bushes. The Canadians are the perverts.

  12. Anonymous on

    Marc, as a natural born american, I am rather ashamed that our “government” has decided to make an example out of you (quite obviously unjustly). I am so sorry that this has happened to you, someone who is clearly just fighting to end what is one of humanity’s greatest examples of sheer greed and ignorance. You have done a lot to move us forward towards a more sane way of thinking in regards to Marijuana. We are far from general acceptance of Marijuana but we have come far. With people like you showing everyone what’s wrong with corrupt governments, I will always remain loyal to the cause and I hope you can feel the good energy being exhibited by those of us on this side. Be strong Marc

  13. dutchman on

    I looked closely at the letter sent out from the DEA statement about the arrest of the Prince of Pot. This was in 2005 more than five years ago. Mr Tandy goes on and on about Marcs crimes < Most interesting is the sn]mall boxed in section at the bottom of the official DEA letter, that being the whole mandate of the DEA.. This I believe Marc and his gang of jolly pirates should have paid closer attention to. The DEA are acting properly in their fight against marc. The DEA powered to stop drugs on their way to the USA and anywhere else. Marc was supplying seed ammunition to the American drug farmers during their drug war. It is no wonder the punishment was so severe all this in spite of Marc pleading guilty while chained up in the court. Marc and his supporters are famous for their long time active stirring up the pot of activism for marijuana, Marcs chances for a transfer as well as even a reduced sentence shortened is impossible, This is what perhaps the other letter was stating that being Marc has some now to have control on his actions that spoiled his chances of transfer to a prison in Canada. The crime was not politics but trafficking seeds of a famous drug plant. No surprises here. A model prisoner may have received permission to transfer, that being the case, Marc did not receive the transfer and could it be because he was not the model prisoner that was reasonably expected ? It is a mystery why crying about Marc will change the drug law. or soften the public harts. In Holland, our good relationship with the straight public was ruined by foreigners who made so many demands on others. Soon the tolerance bubble burst and the police are back to their old tricks, It looks like the same thing will happen to Vancouver. It has already happened to the Prince of Pot and all his friends in jail,The DEA are clear in their efforts to stop drugs and they have prevailed . 2000 more nights behind iron bars will make marc emery a believer of that. I am so sorry it ended this way.

  14. Anonymous on

    Cousins within the internal alchemy of human beings, like trees as the wind blows branches willy nilly in space seeming to be in control. The tree sends roots deeper to support itself in these brutal conditions and actually gains strength to endure. I believe you will both make positive use of this attack and situation, My heart and prayers are with you, these powerful connections with the great divine are like candles that never go out within the darkest of caves. Be well. Namaste, peace and patience.

  15. foam on

    Where is Marc? Hopefully in a much nicer Club Fed?

  16. Anonymous on

    To think he may have been refused a transfer because of web blogs.
    This is about as close as it gets to thought crime.
    Vote the CON’s out.

  17. Anonymous on

    To Marc and Jodi,
    I will continue to ‘write in’ Ron Paul on my ballet.All of my family and friends have done the same and will continue to do so.However I will say this,should Mr.Paul ever get elected I’m convinced that the office of President of the United States is merely a figurehead for the ‘true’ powers that be.We will endeavor to persevere in spite of this.

  18. Anonymous on

    That rap sheet is so ridiculous, it’s ridonculous! Bogus, bogus charges. It’s obvious you have a target on your back Marc. Give ’em hell! Stay strong.

  19. The BallyHoo on

    I’m sorry to hear this. Marc, keep strong and get through the hell.
    Completely politically motivated refusal.