The leaves are starting to change color, harvest season is upon us, and fall has officially begun. As the days grow shorter and the temperature gets a bit cooler it is a good time to reflect on the year that was in cannabis law reform.
2010 turned the steady momentum we had built in previous years and amplified it to a near unstoppable force. Nowhere was the enthusiastic spirit more prevalent than at this years annual NORML Conference in Portland, OR. The theme, “Just Say Now!”, was perfectly encapsulated in both the mood and tone of speakers and attendees. With the addition of states such as New Jersey and the District of Columbia to the list of localities legalizing some form of medical use and Proposition 19 only five weeks from the polling booth, there is much to be optimistic about.
The conference’s content reflected this immense progress, but also illuminated the turning point at which we have arrived. It is time for coalition building and outreach, the war on cannabis can only be ended by reaching out to formally overlooked and marginalized groups. These groups, while not necessarily consumers themselves, still suffer from the negative consequences of prohibition and would benefit greatly from its repeal.
Those privileged to attend the conference were treated to some very poignant speeches and discussions. It was hard not to come away impressed by speaking notables such as Alice Huffman of the CA-NAACP, travel guide Rick Steves, musician Greta Gaines, Congressman Earl Blumenauer and Governor Gary Johnson. Fortunately, for those who were unable to attend, we are beginning to populate our YouTube page with new video content captured in Portland. We invite to you visit our site at www.youtube.com/natlnorml and experience some of the conference’s best moments. For now, treat yourself to speeches from show stealers Alice Huffman and Greta Gaines, as well as a recap of the first day of the conference. More will continue to be posted in the coming days.
NORML would like to extend our unending gratitude to all those who contributed to making this event possible. Enjoy the thought provoking speeches and educate others with what you learn. The time has come to liberate cannabis, all we have to do is “Just Say Now!”