“One has a moral responsibility to disobey unjust laws.” -Martin Luther King Jr.
In every society, each citizen will eventually come to a crossroad in which a choice must be made. It is a choice that will not only define the society, but ultimately, define the individual. It is an age old battle between right and wrong, good and evil, moral and immoral. After all, every person involved in creating the many different laws that Americans must adhere to, are only human. Meaning, that each is susceptible to greed and all the many different forms of treachery that could potentially alter ones ability to clearly and morally strike laws into place.
Today, this defining moment is happening for us all. With the new poll showing that 74 percent of Americans believe that marijuana has real medical benefits and will soon be completely legalized, most are beginning to feel a bit morally wrong about continuing to look the other way as our government profits off the overwhelmingly high percentage of nonviolent marijuana arrests. As of January 2014, over 25 percent of the federal prison population was incarcerated for nonviolent marijuana offenses. An overwhelming 50 percent of that total population was arrested for Drug related crimes. The federal prison population has increased by almost 790 percent since 1980. In a country where fifty percent of the federal prison population is incarcerated due to laws that the vast majority are speaking out against, it is the right as well as the duty of each citizen to openly stand against it.
There are still plenty of States that have yet to embrace the many health and industrial benefits to hemp and cannabis. Within these States, many ailing individuals are still in need of what is being recognized as the most versatile plant on the planet. These sick and potentially dying people are afraid to heal themselves with what has been proven (in most cases) to be a cure to what ails them. The archaic marijuana laws that restrict them from acquiring it are all that stands in the way. Within this dire need, a group by the name of Healthy Hopes is choosing to stand against this corruption and help these desperate souls. The mission of this nonprofit organization:
“To provide safe access to medical cannabis to seriously and chronically ill patients who have no hopes of legally obtaining the medicine they need where they live. We do this by providing resources to patients so that they may become “medical marijuana refugees” and move to states where they can safely and legally access the medicine they so desperately need.”
It says a lot about a country when its residents are forced to uproot their homes, move their families and enter a legally gray area of acquisition solely to medicate themselves with the only option that is left. An option that could be the choice between life and death.
There is no doubt that many wonder why the government chooses to keep hemp and cannabis on the schedule one narcotics list, where it remains illegal on a federal level with restricted research. One simple answer is that there is no money in curing, only in treating an illness. It would be like creating a product that never breaks. Sure, one would stand to make a large profit at first, however, after the first surge, sales would inevitably die off because no one would ever need another. This is the logic followed by those who stand to profit by hindering the legality of cannabis. Cannabis has already been shown by many leading scientific and medical groups to be able to rapidly reduce, if not heal completely, many serious illness’ that affect this country. One would think the overall health of the populace would take precedent over a pharmaceutical companies’ profit and loss statement, unfortunately, for those dying of what they were told was incurable, that is not the case.
This country will see many more groups like Healthy Hopes arising as the need for companies of this sort become clear. There is no doubt that this group will be met with hardship and complications while trying to relocate those in need. Many will seek to disrupt this process but complications do not deter those out to better the world. Hardships only reveal those out to fight the cause, and rally those true of heart to return to the fray. The Last American Vagabond wholeheartedly supports Healthy Hopes and calls to those with a desire for change. Be a part of a group intent on helping those Americans left to their sickness by a profiteering government. Be a part of what heals this country and sets a course to prosperity and civil justice.
“Political language is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind.” George Orwell
Americans shared a combination of shock and exuberance when President Obama made his recent statement to The New Yorker in regard to alcohol being more dangerous than marijuana. This raised many questions as well as a call to action that was clearly heard by those waiting for the right moment. In February, 18 members of Congress went as far as to send Obama a formal letter indicating their strong desire to reevaluate how the federal government regulates marijuana. One would think this statement was the herald of change. However, the Obama administration set out to dance around the issue while continuing to drag their feet.
“We’d be more than glad to work with Congress if there is a desire to look at and reexamine how the drug is scheduled, as I said there is a great degree of expertise that exists in Congress. It is something that ultimately Congress would have to change, and I think that our administration would be glad to work with Congress if such a proposal were made.”
This statement was made by Attorney General Eric Holder on April 4 of this year. Clearly, 18 members of Congress sending formal requests for action in the previous months, represents just the proposal that this statement suggests has yet to be made.
“The truly scary thing about undiscovered lies is that they have a greater capacity to diminish us than exposed ones. They erode our strength, our self-esteem, our very foundation.” - Cheryl Hughes
At one point in this nation’s history journalism was an honorable and respected craft. It embodied a sense of duty to the people, a dedication to the freedom of information and the people’s right to the truth. It was carried out by men of honor, men who were revered. As always there will be some who choose to go against the grain and act out of desire and greed, but today the American people are seeing a complete loss of accountability within their trusted media.
Today one would be hard pressed to find a main stream media source that isn’t sponsored or completely backed by a corporate or private source. The problem being, that these financial sources have very specific agendas and would go as far as to broadcast information that was knowingly untrue to suit their needs. The facts and the truth are a secondary concern. With the addition of the internet to that equation, the idea of today’s media is intermingled with countless news outlets that can wildly claim unsubstantiated facts with no fear of reprisal. Yet, many Americans will still read, believe and repost those very same articles nonetheless. So the sad truth is that most of the country is being mislead about what is actually happening.
“When a man is denied the right to live the life he believes in, he has no choice but to become an outlaw.” - Nelson Madela
Meet Joe Cannabis (Joe’s real name has been changed at his request).
Joe is your average American citizen. He smokes marijuana for fun every so often but has slowed down after the birth of his second child, primarily for financial reasons. Like most Americans today, Joe feels that marijuana is grossly misrepresented by our government and feels that it is no different than tobacco or alcohol. However, he lives in a country where it is unfortunately still illegal, so he keeps his feelings to himself. Not so long ago, legislation was passed that made it possible for regulated dispensaries to legally operate within his home state. Having a pro marijuana mentality and a strong belief in the medical uses of cannabis, Joe decided to open a dispensary and get in on the ground floor; assuring that his growing family would have a secure financial future. Assuming that his state would not lead him astray, he invested all his saving into this pioneering venture. Being on the forefront of this Marijuana Movement, Joe was unfortunately one of the many who felt the unjust wrath of the Federal Government, who decided that they no longer agreed with the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States...
“As has been well documented, I smoked pot as a kid, and I view it as a bad habit and a vice, not very different from the cigarettes that I smoked as a young person up through a big chunk of my adult life, I don’t think it is more dangerous than alcohol.” -President Barack Obama, The New Yorker
The United States finds Itself in the beginning of an era. One of moral, civic and patriotic rediscovery. An era where the people once again find their voice and remember that the power has always resided with the American majority and not the elite few. It is every conscientious individual’s responsibility to inform the public of the truth when that truth is so obviously being disregarded by those who’s very duty it is to inform. Even with all that has shifted due to the current Marijuana Movement, many men of both authoritative, and political standing continue to state proven misconceptions and flat out lies. Political agendas have always had a way of blurring the distinction between fact and fiction to suit the needs of its architect. It is for this very reason that it is important to educate oneself and not be cowed along by the agendas of men who’s only true allegiance is to money. The current facts courtesy of Drugpolicy.org:
At what point in the history of the United States did the will of the majority become a choice for the Federal Government? When did the rights as citizens of this country become tangible objects that could be molded to suit the motives of whoever is in control? These are questions that every American needs to be asking themselves with every breach of the constitution that gets deftly swept under the rug. Every moment in this country someone’s rights are abused by the very men meant to protect them. Within human nature there has always been an inherent potential for evil, for greed. This is known to us all, and is exactly why the law of the land is set in place to provide safety, or at least the illusion of safety. The only possible fault in this structure lies in the actions of those charged with upholding such protections. When those we look to for retribution fail to act, or are the perpetrators themselves, every delusion of safety is lost and the reality behind their inaction becomes painfully clear.
There are many documented events of government officials committing dramatic violations to the rights and protection that every American is entitled to.
“The man who reads nothing at all is better educated than the man who reads nothing but newspapers.” Thomas Jefferson
The idea of the United States, at one point, was synonymous with the idea of power, morality, and leadership. A shining light in a world drowning within its own corruption and dishonesty. Choices were made that reverberated throughout the free world; clearing the path for those striving to break free from the shackles of coercion. The mission of The Last American Vagabond has always been to shine light on the dark corners of our society and force the average citizen to think for themselves. To look beyond whatever bias nonsense one chooses to read or watch from the mainstream media and develop one’s own opinion using common sense and deductive logic. Americans find themselves in a country today that has shed the extra mental weight of it’s morality and leadership, but deftly held on to it’s power. Looking at where this country began, compared to where it currently stands, one can honestly wonder with whom that power currently resides.
The system once set in place by our Forefathers, designed to give power to the people, is now only a phantom shell of what it once was. Enough of the shell remains to allow those unwilling...
“For the first time in human history, tomorrow’s generation is predicted to die younger because of today’s food system.” - Generation Food
Never before in the history of the human race have future generations been uncertain about the security of their food source due to the actions of their predecessors. The world is seeing an unprecedented decline in available food due to the direction that is being taken into the world of genetically modified (GM) foods. Monsanto claimed that GMO's would solve the world hunger problem, when in reality, a larger and much more serious problem was created, or rather, manufactured. Most specifically the “Terminator Seeds” by Monsanto which are genetically altered to produce unusable seed, forcing farmers to buy new seed every year. These GM plants cross pollinate, spreading this deadly life ending gene with no control. Think of the cataclysmic consequences this could, and will have, on the planet. A future of single generation crops slowly starving the world. When one turns the sustenance and survival of a people into a business...
"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts." - Bertrand Russell
In a society so wrought with controversy, starvation and conflicting agendas, it becomes easy to take advantage of the people’s desperate need for a solution. Those claiming to have a cure all will always arise, but in this uncertain world it is rarely that simple and deception is usually involved. Monsanto is a company that all should be aware of, if not already fear. They are patenting genetically modified organisms, (GMO’s) seeds designed to withstand chemical herbicides. Monsanto claims to be working for the farmers but by locking companies into licensing arrangements, and collecting royalties by claiming that the seed is now the “intellectual property” of Monsanto, they are raising the cost of seed which these farmers are now forced to buy. This is pushing the small farmers out of business. Open pollinated seeds are replaced by genetically altered seeds, and a renewable resource becomes a nonrenewable, patented commodity.
On September 10, the first United States hearing of reconciliation of state and federal laws on marijuana took place, with little to no reconciliation of laws, or opinions for that matter. The simple fact that this hearing was held at all portrays how much the movement has become a visceral issue to the American people. It shows there are those within the government, however outnumbered, still fighting for the American dream; still fighting for the voice of the people.
Those passionate about the purpose of this hearing stated their intentions, and federal leaders for the continuation of this antiquated marijuana prohibition were put to question. Important topics such as the interaction of banking industries and pot retailers, and whether it would be allowed moving forward, were discussed with no avail. While continuing to claim that persecution of personal or medical marijuana use was low on their list of priorities, James Cole, Deputy Attorney at the Department of Justice...
Federal Piracy The Robbery of Medical Marijuana
Posted August 28, 2013
Pirate:One who preys on others; a plunderer. Plunder:1. To rob of goods by force, especially in time of war; pillage. 2. To seize wrongfully or by force; steal.
The Federal Government has recently been executing what most are calling “smash and grab” searches upon medical marijuana dispensaries. Showing state issued warrants to locations operating legally under their state law, then raiding, looting, and leaving, with no criminal charges issued and no documentation left. Regardless of the unconstitutional illegality of marijuana under federal law, this style of "in and out" raid with no paper evidence or receipts of seizure left, is wrong, illegal and immoral. This is piracy cloaked by a DEA badge. This is our government’s way of showing the American people that the law does not apply to them, and that if we won’t comply with their wishes, more unlawful acts will continue under the guise of federal law.