23 Mar 2011

Are 13 symbols in an X pattern inherently offensive?

Hey, Blenders, I’m back from my long, strange trip to wherever it is baristas go when they haven’t posted in eons.  Hi, Pam, hi, Autumn, everybody… In case we haven’t been introduced, I’m “Radical” Russ.  I’m a straight white married atheist pot legalizer from the Pacific Northwest, so you can

02 Aug 2010

Will Marijuana Legalization mobilize the Left like Gay Marriage Amendments mobilized the Right?

Ryan Grim at Huffington Post reports on the notion going round political circles that California’s Prop 19 (and, to a lesser extent, medical marijuana initiatives in Arizona and South Dakota, and dispensaries for medical marijuana in Oregon) will be for the Democrats what anti-Gay Marriage Equality amendments were for Republicans

30 Jul 2010

Democrats make crack cocaine sentencing slightly less racist

Netroots Nation was a blast!  I got to have a great hour with Pam, eating chicken salads and catching up since our last F2F in Denver in 2008.  I briefly got to see Autumn as well before she headed off to another activity in her busy weekend. It reminded me

24 Jul 2010

Reporting from Netroots Nation in Las Vegas

As I write this, Senator Al Franken from Minnesota is sitting across from me at my table in the huge Rio Hotel ballroom.  We’re watching House candidate Tarryl Clark, who will take on Rep. Michele Bachmann in Minnesota.  He came out from backstage to watch and since my table is

18 May 2010

Anti-gay, anti-pot Rep. Mark Souder wants forgiveness?

I woke up this morning to the news that Rep. Mark Souder, 8-term Indiana Republican, was resigning amidst a sexual scandal.  It seems the married Mark was having an affair with his married aide, Tracy. As a guy who blogs for a leading drug reform organization (NORML) and for a

10 Mar 2010

The New Jim Crow: How the War on Drugs Gave Birth to a Permanent American Undercaste

I work this issue every day and am well aware of the racist nature of the War on (Certain American Citizens Using Non-Pharmaceutical, Non-Alcoholic, Tobacco-Free) Drugs.  But even I wasn’t aware of the outrageous statistics comparing the Drug War to Jim Crow era.  Michelle Alexander lays it all out in

19 Feb 2010

Princess Barbie Talibania Complains of Academic Bias in Speaker Selection

Howdy, Blenders!  Busy busy busy and haven’t posted in a while and I miss you all!  I’ve been called from a higher power to return for a quick post, called by that guanoloco siren song from my favorite Virginal Warrior For Christ, Princess Barbie Talibania. Barbie’s upset this time because

24 Jan 2010

Medical marijuana CAN kill you… if you need an organ transplant

Medical marijuana activists like to claim that cannabis has never killed anyone.  While it is true that cannabis is remarkably non-toxic (“the safest therapeutically-active substance known to man,” according to a DEA judge), medical marijuana use has actually killed many people in the United States. For in the now fourteen

01 Dec 2009

Norm Kent on the suicide of Mike Penner

One of my colleagues from the NORML Board of Directors wrote this compelling piece on Counterpunch.org: The suicide this past weekend of Los Angeles Times sportswriter Mike Penner, who for the last few years wrote under the byline of Christine Daniels, leaves me today with a desire to rant and

04 Nov 2009

Why do marijuana dispensaries win and gay marriages lose on the same ballot in Maine?

As I wind up my evening in the West Coast Portland, I log in to the WCHS6 website on the East Coast Portland to follow the election results in Maine.  For me it is a repeat of the mixed emotions I felt on Election Night 2008, where I was elated