By Sonia Case
Following important cannabis news articles every day can be a real burn-out, we know. That’s why the Emerald rolls up a chronicle of the headiest news hits, and passes them to you at the end of each week. We Bring You: The Digital Dime.
Today is June 19th, an annual holiday to commemorate the abolition of slavery in the U.S. On this day in 1865, Union Major General Gordon Granger landed in Galveston, Texas and officially declared that all slaves were free.
Since the late 1800s, Juneteenth celebrations have soared across the country. Recent protests against police brutality, sparked by the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery, have brought national awareness to this year’s Juneteenth celebrations.
This is a year for radical change in the face of systemic racism and criminal justice. The Black Lives Matter protests are just the beginning.
Viva Las Pardons!
This Wednesday, June 17th, the Nevada Board of Pardons Commissioners unanimously voted to pardon over 15,000 people convicted for low-level cannabis possession.
Democratic Gov. Steve Sisolak initially introduced the measure last week, stating that if approved, the resolution would, “clear the state for thousands of people who bear the stigma of a conviction for actions that have now been decriminalized.”
The measure grants unconditional clemency for those with possession convictions for up to 1 ounce of cannabis from January 2001 to January 2017. Qualifying individuals must submit an application along with a copy of their criminal record.
Racism, Cannabis and You
Want to learn more about the early history of cannabis in the U.S.? Check out the Library of Congress’ (LOC) research guide on “Marihuana.” Newspaper clipping with titles such as, “Is the Mexican Nation ‘Locoed’ by a Peculiar Weed?” and “Victims of a Mexican Drug” are sure to blow your mind. LOC’s collection explores how cannabis was used in anti-Mexican propaganda and how that led to cannabis prohibition in the early 20th century.
You may remember Louisiana Rep. Larry Bagley, R-LA, from a few weeks ago. Back in May, Rep. Bagley was working hard to make medical cannabis more accessible in his state. Well, you can now join Rep. Bagley in a celebratory cha-cha dance. Last Thursday, June 11th, Democratic Gov. John Bel Edwards signed House Bill 819 into law!
The new bill will go into effect on August 1st, 2020. HB 819 will expand the list of conditions qualifying for cannabis treatment and remove restrictions on which doctors can prescribe medical cannabis. According to HighTimes, once this new law goes into effect, Louisiana’s medical cannabis program will be one of the most comprehensive in the country.