I Stand For Change | MMJ Rally in LA

People at the rally

Tania and I went to the rally at the Federal Court Building in downtown Los Angeles for Charles C. Lynch and for the cause of Medical Marijuana this afternoon.

I had emailed Charles to let him know we going to be there and bringing buttons to give away. The official name for the rally was “Hope for Change” – but I finished hoping on Nov. 5th – Now I’m standing up, as are many others, so we get real change that helps us as patients.

I think our fear and silence has let this nonsense go on for too long. It’s true that some of us will take a hit for standing up, but we’ll all lose if no one stands up. I really believe in medical marijuana, I really believe that marijuana is a gift from God.

I also feel like I have nothing more to say that can add to the debate over marijuana use. Over the last 26 years I’ve heard just about every argument on both sides, and frankly, I’m just tired of it… The truth has been said over and over and ignorance still rules the day.

Here’s some photos that Tania took today at the rally…

Today’s Rally:

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The injustice is that Charles C. Lynch, a good community business man, is having to go through this whole stupid trial and everything else just because he choose to be compassionate, stepped forward and helped provided relief for numerous MMJ patients in his area.

But the local sheriff who does not like marijuana being legal for people with chronic illnesses, and apparently believes his opinion matters more than the law and the state constitution he’s sworn to uphold, so he called the DEA in to try and ruin this man’s life…

Here’s a bit from the MPP’s newsletter about Charles’ case:

Charles Lynch operated a medical marijuana dispensing collective in Morro Bay, Central Coast Compassionate Caregivers, that helped more than 2,000 seriously ill patients obtain their medicine in a legal, clean, and safe environment. In March 2007, the facility was raided, and federal Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) agents later arrested and charged Charles with five counts of marijuana-related federal crimes.

Charles not only complied with California’s long-standing medical marijuana laws, he was operating under a license issued by the City of Morro Bay and was a well-respected member of the local community. Nevertheless, Charles was treated like a common criminal under draconian federal marijuana laws, and the county sheriff even cooperated with the subversion of state law.

The jury in Charles’ trial was not allowed to hear any information relating to medical marijuana and his compliance with state law. Consequently, on August 5, 2008, Charles was found guilty on all counts.

While President Obama has pledged to end the raids on state-legal medical marijuana providers, that does little to help Charles. He is one several providers still facing federal charges or sentencing from raids during the Bush administration. His sentencing is set for March 23, and if the judge doesn’t show discretion because of Charles’ status under state law he could end up spending the rest of his life in prison.

I made a bunch of buttons over the weekend for the rally that look like this…

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I quickly gave away all 120-150 buttons and got to walk around, talk to a few folks… I haven’t been feeling so great (the flu – almost over it now…) so we cut out after a bit. I just wanted everyone to have a souvenir of a moment, a moment when we know we stood for this movement, we stood for Charles, stood for justice, we stood for change…

For those that got a button today – Wear it proudly, proud that you stood up, proud that you’re part of the change, and not just talking about it…and I hope it brings a smile to your face when you a digging through a box of old stuff 20 years from now and find this little button and you remember those crazy days back when marijuana was illegal…

A movement isn’t just a one day event, but a series of steps to reach a goal.

Help Charles C. Lynch reach the goal of staying out of prison and getting back to his life.

Visit his website: (http://www.friendsofccl.com/) and send him a message of support today. On his site are listed a number of ways you can help. On March 23rd he gets sentenced…

The Right Way To Do Business

I had the best business encounter over the phone late last week, and to balance against my complaint posting last week, I thought I would tell you about it.

A Button Machine for 1 inch buttons

A Button Machine for 1 inch buttons. Image from American Button Machines.

I have a button machine for making 1 inch buttons. I started making them several years ago when my friend Ryan Smolar loaned me his machine for an extended period of time (thanks again Ryan!). Shortly after I had to return Ryan’s machine, a good friend bought me my own for my birthday.

I somehow jammed the machine in October while I was making buttons for the Charles C. Lynch Rally in LA. I got about 70 buttons made before I messed it up, and I set it aside while I worked on other things…

After I set it aside it started to become this “thing” I had to do something about with lots of confusing variables and stuff I had no idea about – I think we call that fear. And fear kept me from moving forward and doing what needed to be done if I wanted to use the gift I had been given.

I don’t know why phone calls are so impossible for me sometimes. Finally – last week – I decided to just do it, and I called American Button Machines in Plano, Texas, and ended up talking to the nicest person I’ve every encountered on the phone. Not fake nice, but a real, genuine person who put me at ease and after a short conversation I felt empowered and knowledgeable enough to tackle the repairs that Keith (that’s the nice person’s name) suggested. In a half an hour I had my machine working again. And in the process I felt like this was finally, really, my button machine.

Thank you Keith at American Button Machines!

Your loyal customer,
Jon, onehumanbeing

Double Rainbow

Double Rainbow Detail - Click to see full Image of the Moment

Please note: I am publishing this post about a week [2-25-2009] after I first wrote it. See the note at the end of the post for more details…

Ripples After The Splash

The last 36 hours have been very difficult. (the story gets better, really…)

I’ve experienced this before, the relapse after a big depression, just as you’re heading out of the whirlpool. It’s like ripples from a big splash in a pond.

Peeved

That’s the word I settled on to describe how I feel today. I’m angry, bothered and vexed – but mostly it’s wrestling with God, trying to get through my confusion of the moment…

So today, I’m not the best to be around – I have a short temper, and I feel like I have an agenda in every conversation… most of which have been with Tania who had the day off today and got to enjoy my dark windstorms and blowing clouds…

I don’t get this way very often, and haven’t in a long time, so it’s really throwing me around this time, and tripping up my footing.

I believe in a God of big promises, and today I need to see some of those show up… like I said – I have been peeved today. Maybe it’s something I ate, my various medications – I don’t know…

A note to those who don’t understand the work of faith: faith is not blind, it’s a force that strips away all your illusions and makes you face the real problems, like food on the table and clothes to wear. To learn about faith that works you have to ask questions, it’s fear and doubt that keeps you one quiet.

I found out from Tania as I was muttering about in my peeved ramblings this morning, that she was dealing with the same kind of thoughts, and she had been praying about the same things that were bothering me.

Praying – a much better response. That’s how we’ve moved from questions to answers in the past – we prayed – and it has worked every time so far…

We both agreed that we needed to see some of those promises, and now was a really good time, really… and we prayed.

Rainbows

Later this afternoon I drove over to A Soothing Remedy Collective, and saw my new friend Dr. Shillstein (that’s his weedtracker username), the guy who runs the place.

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I usually enjoy visiting the Dr. but today I was just a dark cloud coming to visit. I had gone there just to drop off some MMJ (Medical Marijuana) Week buttons for them to give away,  but I also picked up a gram of Mango OG Kush (the Dr. recommended it for my situation – a very good choice) and left…

After I got home and had some of my new herb (still feeling peeved, but in a nice, kush-induced, fuzzy kind-of-way) I glanced out the front window and saw the most beautiful rainbow I’ve ever seen (and no, the rainbow wasn’t because of the herb).

I called Tania over to see, and we both ran downstairs to try and get a photo of this amazing sight.

I’m very serious when I say I’ve never seen such a brilliant, complete, colorful double rainbow. The composite photo above does not do it justice.

Now I realize that there are “rainbows” and there are “Rainbows: The Amazing Version” – This was the latter…

I have never seen one such as this, but I imagine that the one Noah saw must have been like this, because you look up it and go, “Wow…” – you just have to.

You might or might not know that the rainbow Noah saw was a sign to him from God that represented God’s promises to him, God’s covenant with Noah, and all mankind after him. I feel like today, God answered my storms with a rainbow…

An after note: 11:30 pm – I’m still feeling a bit peeved – I hope this feeling goes away when this current depression ripple passes because I do not like feeling this way…

Note from about a week later – Feb 25, 2009

I didn’t publish this post on the day I wrote it because in it’s draft form it was such an incomplete picture of what was going on in our life, the much bigger picture where this is just one footstep of faith leading to the next – but for those that don’t walk this way it could cause confusion.

My life is about fanning the spark of faith in the people I meet, and I don’t want to do anything to blow out that spark…

This double rainbow was followed up by a show the next day on the Science Channel about Uncertainty and Quantum Physics. When I need spiritual clarity, I turn to Quantum Physics – it gives me great perspective.

All the peeved feelings melted away after that night, and my questions have started to return to me as answers that help me see the world with more love, hope and purpose…

And I have a new material for my work now – Uncertainty. More about that coming up soon…

So now, over a week later, I’m starting to understand in an even-more-amazed-way the beauty of that rainbow, on that particular day, and that moment. It’s a gift that keeps on giving. My faith is now stronger and has a larger vision…

STEW: part three

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Welcome To The WE Generation…

It is late in the evening of November 5, 2008 and I am amazed at what I’m watching, feeling and seeing coming to pass… it’s like watching as the world begin to turn, but it only seems that way because of the long night and the early fingers of light that are just beginning to shoot across the horizon.

Today I thought back about 6 or so years ago when I worked at the Gazette Newspapers in Long Beach, and we had an office manager named Kenya.

Kenya has a white father and black mother, kind-of-like Barack, and we would talk about the black/white thing once in a while.

One morning when I was talking to her about this issue I said, “You know Kenya, the world is upside down…The last shall be first, and a change will come…”

Why do I believe this?

Because I am a child of 1964, and after 1964, everything changed… I grew up believing Martin Luther King’s “I Have A Dream” speech.

Because both of my parents were from Springfield, Illinois, and Lincoln has been a hero of my since childhood.

He had a dream, and Martin had a dream, and they became my dream, and on January 20, 2009 the two come together in what WE have chosen to dream together – Change we can believe in…

In the night, unless you are awake and watching the sky, the light goes out and artificial light takes over until we sleep and dream. Everything looks different in artificial light. We hide from monsters, and jump when the wind blows against the house…

We have tried to comfort ourselves from the fear with myths and legends to protect us while we sleep, looking for clues that when morning comes everything will be alright, that our flag will still wave.

Welcome to dawns early light…

Tell me, can you see?

The flag does still wave and the blessing goes on. The new day does come and the torch of the night is passed, because we have one more night still to travel through, but that’s when a ladder comes down from heaven, and the glory of El-Shaddai will fill the Earth…

But before then, the light of day is about to burst around you, and what looked so strange in the night will look very different in the light of day.

That all aside, I can not tell you how much I am crying inside for the children of Esau…

To be continued.

Red Fish, Blue Fish

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Red Fish, Blue Fish
Which school would you swim with?

Watching the debate last night made me think of this: Whose company would I want to go work for? McCain’s or Obama’s…

McCain Conglomerate (also known as McBush’s Farm): Fuzzy, emotional, fear driven company with an aging Maverick who has mutated into a loose canon and is soon to be replaced by a hockey mom who’s previous job was run by emotion, vindictive firings and gross lies. Wage are low and declining, but they give you a neat flag to wave.

Obama Industries: Fresh, new company with a motivated and dedicated staff on top of the latest technologies and all working on the same page. The CEO is a young organizer who can get things done. Ask him what he is going to do and he will give you a bullet point explanation with no fuzzy edges… and you can read more about the details on his company website. Instead of recycled, failed approaches, this CEO is forward-looking and flexible, ready to meet the unforeseen challenges ahead. Good wages and benefits.

Hmmm… let’s see, work in fear and emotional turmoil and get paid like crap or the company of promise with living-wages and health care?

I’m not walking, I’m running to get a job at Obama’s company… as a matter of fact I think I would camp out the night before just to make sure I was first in line.