WHAT – The Seattle Hempfest XXI, America’s largest "protestival"
WHEN – Noon – 8 p.m., Friday, Aug. 17, and 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 18 & 19
WHERE – Myrtle Edwards Park - Pier 70 on the downtown Seattle waterfront
Is it time to retire marijuana prohibition? The world's largest cannabis policy retirement party thinks so. Seattle Hempfest 2012 expects many tens of thousands to attend its 21st annual event, and as America’s largest marijuana law reform event Hempfest invites everyone to join in the celebration to end cannabis prohibition Aug. 17-19 at Myrtle Edwards Park.
The 2012 "protestival" features hundreds of booths and six stages of music and speakers dotting the mile plus expanse at Myrtle Edwards and Centennial Parks, on the beautiful Puget Sound. With the Washington state decriminalization Initiative 502 on this November’s ballot, there will be much discussion about the merits and mechanics of regional cannabis reform on all of Hempfest's stages.
Seattle Hempfest history book hits the streets
By Seattle Hempfest Staff
SEATTLE – How did a humble a group of community activists build the world’s largest pot rally? Protestival: A Twenty Year Retrospective of Seattle Hempfest, tells how the Hempfest was built from the ground up with little more than a vision and the conviction necessary to take that dream to fruition. Protestival details the long, hard struggle to build the world’s largest all volunteer annual free-speech rally.
To note this year's 20th anniversary milestone, Seattle Hempfest Executive Director Vivian McPeak has written a book about the two decades that the flagship annual event of America's cannabis culture has been advancing the cause of reform. The world's largest marijuana law reform gathering, the Seattle Hempfest draws hundreds of thousands of attendees down to the Seattle waterfront each year. This year's event is Aug. 19 - 21.
Seattle Hempfest Core Staff
Seattle Hempfest has filed a lawsuit in United States District Court against the City of Seattle, as well as its mayor, director of the Seattle Department of Transportation, director of Seattle Center, and chairperson of the Seattle Special Events Committee. The suit seeks relief under the U.S. Constitution and the Washington Constitution, and was filed in an effort to obtain a 2011 permit to produce the annual free speech rally to reform America’s laws prohibiting cannabis.
The suit asks the city to issue an appropriate permit for Seattle Hempfest in August 2011 and, if necessary, to enjoin Seattle from implementing the "West Thomas Overpass project" in such fashion as to interfere with the use of Myrtle Edwards Park in August 2011. Planned summer construction of the sky-bridge in Myrtle Edwards Park, the location of Hempfest since 1995, has displaced the mammoth event which routinely draws more than 100,000 attendees annually.
Well aware of the slow-moving nature of the Seattle Special Events permit process, Hempfest submitted its special event application earlier than ever, in early November 2010, hoping for a decision within the 60-day period set forth by law. However, after months of negotiations Hempfest organizers find themselves with neither a date or a venue for the annual summer "protestival," which is celebrating its 20th anniversary.
By Stephanie Bishop, Hemp News Correspondent
I was born in 1974, the year Nixon left office. Somewhere in my late teens, I realized my Kraft Macaroni and Cheese was toxic and the Smurfette Big Wheel, which I loved, was made by a little Kid is Asia for 2 cents a day. I don’t think they make much more 35 years later. Since then, you wouldn’t believe the amount of information I have taken in and processed. Governments are spending more money on guns, missiles and warplanes than basic services for their people. Our food is toxic on purpose. Corporations focus on the bottom line, destroying lives and entire eco-systems to see it grow. The really rich continue to violate the really poor. All of our financial systems are non-sustainable. Our air and water, the very things we need to survive are polluted. The list goes on and I haven’t scratched the surface. It’s enough to drive a person mad.
I learned to build up my filters and decipher truth from subtle lies. I joined anti war groups and attended rallies, marching with thousands of individuals dedicated to ending commodity wars fought on our dime and in our name. Eventually, I had to look for solutions or be lost in the vastness of problems humans face today. I had to focus on something with the potential to save the World. I found this solution in the Cannabis Plant.
Now's the Time....Whether you support the Teapot Party, Tea Party or any other party, this candidate appeals to a wide variety of voters and is sure to stir up some governmental changes in Kentucky and across the United States.
By Michael Bachara, Hemp News Correspondent
Gatewood Galbraith is currently campaigning for Kentucky's 2011 gubernatorial race as an Independent, free from any party affiliations, and describes himself as free from hidden agenda. Galbraith is focusing his campaign on young voters by proposing a freeze on college tuition expenditures, a $5,000 educational voucher to high school graduates for college or technical school, and legalization of cannabis for medicinal purposes, which he estimates could save the state $500 million to $1 billion in medical costs each year. His pledge is to end the “synthetic subversion” in his state.
United States: Sunil Aggarwal, PhD – Removal of Cannabis from Schedule I of the Controlled Substances ActSubmitted by restore on Tue, 12/21/2010 - 06:57
The Pharmaceuticalization of Cannabis: Rescheduling proponents suggest cannabis doesn't meet the Controlled Substances Act's extensive criteria for placement in Schedule I. The U.S. Government clings to the stance that cannabis merit’s Schedule I status.
By Michael Bachara, Hemp News Correspondent
Sunil Aggarwal, PhD, represents a new generation of scientific-minded doctors, leaving cannabis’ negative propaganda behind and fighting for it as a valuable, medicinal plant. His credentials include the Medical and Scientific Advisory Board of Americans for Safe Access (ASA), Health Professionals for Responsible Drug Scheduling, service on the Board of Directors for the American Academy of Cannabinoid Medicine and he is a Seattle Hempfest Core Staff Member.
“A society has to make a choice: tolerate alternative lifestyles or build more prisons.” Rick Steves
By Michael Bachara, Hemp News Correspondent
In August, travel writer and activist extraordinaire, Rick Steves, spoke to the Seattle Hempfest Hemposium about the futile attempt to enforce a failed prohibition, Europe's successful and pragmatic harm reduction approach to marijuana and the basic non-apologetic stance of cannabis use as a civil liberty. “I believe, very strongly, that it is the responsible, adult, recreational, no apologies necessary, ‘it just makes my music more fun,’ recreational use of marijuana is a civil liberty," Steves explained.
Tribute to Jack Herer
By Gatewood Galbraith
Jack Herer is a social and philosophical tsunami, the ripples from whose splash will forever grace the shores of human consciousness in every freedom loving nation.
He is a grand champion of “We the People” and a natural cycle in our battle with the synthetic subversion which threatens the very concepts of the sovereignty of each human individual.
Jack's tireless efforts to eliminate the facts about cannabis have furnished freedom fighters everywhere with the tools of knowledge with which to resist the fascism of the corporate state as it seeks to subject everyone to its economic bottom line.
Jack recognized that cannabis is a gateway to existentialism, which enlightens our existence and is the basis of our freedom of choice. He also recognized the miraculous healing powers of this herb and many sick and dying people have found comfort in its use after reading his wonderful manifesto "The Emperor Wears No Clothes". I am one of them.
By Michael Bachara, Hemp News
Don E. Wirtshafter ( http://drugsense.org ) gives a speech to the Seattle Hempfest 2010 crowd, in tribute to his good friend Jack Herer.
"Hempfest would not be here were it not for Jack," says Wirtshafter.
He discusses the chaos of the Drug War and how it needs to be stopped. He explains about the DEA and their viscous "sneak and peek" and "knock and talk" tactics to taking advantage of legal medical marijuana patients in Washington.
Don feels that the community needs to step up and help these people who are being taken advantage of and realize the value hemp can bring to our society.
Don is best known for his 1990 launch of the Ohio Hempery, America's first hemp products merchant. He is an inspiration to many within the cannabis legalization movement.
Footage: Hempfest 2010
August 21, 2010
Stop the Drug War, Before They Kick In Your Door
By Paul Stanford, Executive Director of THCF for Hemp News
My speech at the 2010 Seattle Hempfest is my effort to highlight the historical, scientific and philosophical importance of hemp and cannabis. I honor cannabis reform activists that have passed on, such as Jack Herer and Dr. Tod Mikuriya; those arrested for cannabis, such as cannabis minister Roger Christie of Hawaii, Marc Emery of Canada, and Eddy Lepp of California; and those sentenced to death for cannabis in Malaysia.
By Steve Elliott, Toke of the Town/Special to Hemp News
If you've never been to Seattle Hempfest, the world's largest "protestival" based around marijuana, you really owe it to yourself. While it's hard to describe the vibe of being in a crowd of a couple hundred thousand like-minded people, those who have been there keep coming back again and again.
Hempfest, going strong since 1991, is one of the best and almost certainly the biggest marijuana rally in the world. This year's edition hits Seattle on Saturday, August 21 and Sunday, August 22, and is dedicated to the memory of legendary hemp activist Jack Herer, whom the movement lost this year.
Free admission, good music, friendly people, and a beautiful setting have always been among the reasons to attend -- and Myrtle Edwards Park on the lovely Seattle waterfront is guaranteed to be smelling really good once the party kicks in.
"The Seattle Hempfest is incredibly inspirational," said Paul Stanford of this year's primary sponsors The Hemp and Cannabis Foundation (THCF).
By Michael Bachara, Hemp News Staff
The Hemp and Cannabis Foundation (THCF) is proud to be the main sponsor of the Seattle Hempfest because our mission is to educate the general community about the benefits of the cannabis plant to our society. Hempfest 2010 will be held on August 21st and 22nd, and takes place every year at Myrtle Edwards Park expanding in recent years to include the adjacent parks. Hempfest offers five stages of entertainment, a Hemposium question and answer forum, and hundreds of vendor booths, sure to please a myriad of musical, informational, and entrepreneurial tastes.
The time to act in support of hemp is now, so please reach out and create awareness in your community. The Berlin Wall fell quickly, and together we can end this unjust war on the cannabis plant in the same manner, but we need to unite in solidarity. Vivian McPeak, the event's director declares, "No political or human rights movement in America has made it this far without eventually winning. It's just a matter of time."
from Drug War Chronicle, Issue #626, 4/2/10
There is a chance, albeit an outside one, that the entire West Coast could go green in November. Last week we noted that the California tax and regulate initiative had made the ballot, and reported on the Oregon Cannabis Tax Act initiative's ongoing effort to make the ballot. This week, we turn our attention to Washington state, where yet another marijuana legalization initiative campaign is underway.
Sponsored by Seattle Hempfest head Vivian McPeak, marijuana defense attorneys Douglass Hiatt and Jeffrey Steinborn, and journalist-turned-activist Philip Dawdy and organized under the rubric of Sensible Washington, initiative I-1068 would legalize marijuana by removing marijuana offenses from the state's controlled substances act.
As the official ballot summary puts it:
"This measure would remove state civil and criminal penalties for persons eighteen years or older who cultivate, possess, transport, sell, or use marijuana. Marijuana would no longer be defined as a 'controlled substance.' Civil and criminal penalties relating to drug paraphernalia and provisions authorizing seizure or forfeiture of property would not apply to marijuana-related offenses committed by persons eighteen years or older. The measure would retain current restrictions and penalties applicable to persons under eighteen."
"Hemp will be the future of all mankind, or there won't be a future." Jack Herer
By Michael Bachara, Hemp News Staff
Video By Reimond Kerezsi, LK & Oregon NORML
The featured video is an eclectic compilation of passionate speakers from the August 2009 Seattle Hempfest. It includes interesting perspectives from "The Emperor of Hemp" Jack Herer, Allen St. Pierre, Keith Stroup, Paul Stanford, George Rohrbacher, Anndrea Hermann and Seattle Hempfest's own Vivian McPeak. It is sure to give you inspiration.
"It doesn't matter if you are a Democrat or Republican, we are going to legalize marijuana no matter what happens in ten years, because when 60% of the American public wants something, they're going to get it." Allen St. Pierre
"Contact your legislators tell them to end marijuana prohibition. It's time to tax and regulate it. The more letters they get like that, the sooner the day will arrive." Paul Stanford
THCF and Several NORML Chapters Join In
By Paul Stanford and Michael Bachara, Hemp News Staff