The Grass Is Greener

In Beats + Bytes by Nue Agency

Growing up, this week always featured one of my favorite holidays. No, I’m not talking about Passover. I’m talking about 4/20.

The Cannabis business is one of the “Nue frontiers” we are most focused on. I pinch myself when I think about how much we’re working in this amazing sector. There is so much opportunity for impact and growth, both socially and financially. There are a lot of solid companies and smart players at the table already, even though the green revolution is still nascent here and abroad.

As we understand the business and implications of having Cannabis legal in America (not to mention the rise of CBD and other cannabiois and terpenes), it’s important to understand the implications of this industry in terms of criminal justice.

April 20th (“420”) is a cultural celebration of cannabis consumption, but the reality of its relationship to our culture is more bleak. Despite a rising tide of legalization measures in the United States:

● people of color continue to be arrested, incarcerated, and criminalized for low-level cannabis offenses at greater rates than their white counterparts (despite similar rates of use);
● the communities hit hardest by cannabis prohibition may be prevented from participating in or otherwise benefitting from the newly legal cannabis industry;
● people with records for activities no longer considered criminal continue to bear the yoke of criminalization, which impacts their access to education, housing, medical services, and nutritional programs;
● many would-be cannabis entrepreneurs face impossible barriers to entry because access to capital has been routinely denied to them;
● patients experience difficulty in accessing their medicine and may be prevented, de facto, from accessing their medicine altogether;
● legalization legislation lacks comprehensive environmental considerations.

These are a few of the reasons why Nue is supporting the inaugural kickoff of 421 FOR ALL, a historic campaign to promote and advocate for a fair, equitable cannabis industry by focusing on criminal justice reform, social and economic empowerment, patient rights, environmental protectionism, inclusion, and diversity.

Central to this day of justice will be a live-streamed fundraising event at New York City’s Chelsea Music Hall benefiting some of the organizations leading the push for cannabis equality: Drug Policy Alliance, Cage-Free Repair, National Bail Out, and Veterans Health Solutions. It begins at 8 PM.

Let me know if you want to get involved and how. Visit www.421forall.com and follow them on Instagram and Twitter (both @421forall) for more information.

RELATED: Hip-hop pioneer Fab 5 Freddy’s documentary, Grass Is Greener, is out on 4/20. Netflix describes the film as the connection between cannabis, music, mass incarceration, and people of color in America. As always, Freddy is right on time.