Jerry Mitchell was being bugged by some new kid in town to help him find a couple of joints. He turned the fellow down on a couple of occasions, but finally picked up 1/3 of an ounce of homegrown from a local source and sold it to the new kid for $5. It turned out the new kid in town was an undercover agent and Jerry was arrested, convicted and sentenced to 12 years in prison.
John Lennon obviously thought something good might result from his focusing national attention on this unjust prison sentence for a minor marijuana offense, but I suspect he was as pleasantly shocked as the rest of us when, shortly following the event, the Michigan Supreme Court took action to free John Sinclair.
Without marijuana there would be no marijuana smokers and without marijuana smokers there would be no marijuana legalization movement.
Jimmy Carter was the first US President ever to endorse the decriminalization of marijuana, first during his 1976 campaign and again in 1977 in a statement to Congress — which I helped to draft
That enormous challenge of reversing marijuana prohibition would not have been possible without the earlier work of LeMar, Amorphia and those pot-head jazz musicians and hip poets.
Dr. Grinspoon’s extraordinary personal commitment to advancing both marijuana policy and the NORML organization demonstrated his deeply held belief that we all have an obligation to fight injustice whenever and wherever we find it.
One of the more pleasant personal benefits of spending much of my professional life working at NORML has been the opportunity to meet and work with a number of interesting celebrities who were equally motivated to speak out against marijuana prohibition.
When I started NORML in late 1970 I realized that our movement would need the support of some courageous doctors and other health experts to overcome the widely-held perception that existed at that time that marijuana must remain a crime to protect the public health. I found that support in Dr. Lester Grinspoon, Dr. Norman Zinberg, and others.