420DC Weekly Round Up
Headlines from 2/23-3/2
Brought to you by The Outlaw Report
In a report published by the D.C. Fiscal Policy Institute, author Doni Crawford predicts D.C.’s adult-use (recreational) cannabis program, “if designed well, will be able to create more equity, and in some areas, reparations for the damage past cannabis policy has wrought.” The report goes on to saty, “given that structural racism is designed to protect wealth for white people and deny it to Black people and other people of color—combined with the specific economic harm for people of color created by prior cannabis policy—simply opening up this industry without intentionality will exacerbate inequities.”
When dispensaries opened Tuesday morning, the website they typically use to check a patient’s identification, photo, doctor’s information and most importantly—their monthly allotment—had vanished, preventing them from making any sales. Certifying physicians who have to renew their patient’s medical cannabis certifications each year were unable to recertify the list of their patients whose certification expired while the system was (and still is) not working. “I have patients using [cannabis] for cancer treatment, or for managing side effects of their cancer treatment. I have patients using it for seizures,” one nurse practitioner said. “There are times they don’t have access to their medication because of a website, and that is completely irresponsible.”
According to a press release from Marijuana Justice, which analyzed data from the Office of the Executive Secretary of the Supreme Court of Virginia, Black Virginians made up 52% of all possession charges since decriminalization was implemented in July 2020, even though they only account for 20% of the population of Virginia. “Virginia has never proven to be competent in enforcing marijuana laws fairly,” Marijuana Justice Executive Director Chelsea Higgs Wise told Outlaw Report. She said the latest arrest numbers are proof of “our own living legacy of systemic harm that must be stopped through legalizing marijuana right.”
Crestone, a sort-of documentary from Baltimore filmmaker Marnie Ellen Herztler tells the story of a group of twentysomethings with a whole lot of creativity and a whole lot of angst and plenty of time on their hands who moved out to Crestone, Colorado where they grow pot and record strange, oft-brilliant rap songs. Weed documentaries are pretty common during this moment of decriminalization and legalization, but Crestone feels like weed—it is partially narrated by a stoned, drone operator—and that’s a lot more rare.