A discussion of California’s marijuana initiative took an all too familiar turn when Marc and Jodie Emery assaulted Dragonfly De La Luz on Facebook this past Saturday.
While shooting the messenger rather than the message is standard operating procedure for the proponents of California’s Proposition 19, this particular exchange marks an all time low.
Except for the time Chris Bennett and David Malmo-Levine screamed from Vancouver, Canada that Scott Imler was a narc while he was going to trial in Los Angeles, California. Bennett and Malmo-Levine are lieutenants of Emery and this occurred during the summer of 2002.
After opening the first medical marijuana dispensary in Los Angeles, The Los Angeles Cannabis Resource Center (LACRC), and after keeping it open for 5 years, Imler was raided in the wake of 911, on 25 Oct 01.
Many people believe these accusations set the movement in Los Angeles and Southern California back ten years. Certainly, it tore the activist community apart. In the name of unity, of course.
Marc Emery set the tone for the current divisive and diversionary jihad with his diatribe on 5 Jun 10 that begins by declaring that everyone opposed to Prop. 19 is either a prohibitionist, a profiteer, a narc, or a jealous has-been.
The following month, Russ Belville published his “I gots mine” article in the Huffington Post where he states:
Craig and the other dispensary owners who oppose Prop 19 are the ‘I Gots Mine’ element of the anti-legalization campaign. They’ve got the corner on a retail market worth billions, one that is only worth billions if you arrest 850,000 mostly-black-and-brown adults a year for participating in it.
What Belville seems to have overlooked is that the “I gots mine” crowd are the proponents of Prop. 19.
There’s Marc Emery, who made a good living for many years selling marijuana seeds over the internet at astronomically inflated prices “for the good of the movement”.
There’s Steve DeAngelo, who owns Harborside, the largest dispensary in the state which grossed $26 million last year and is located in Oakland, which is the home of Prop. 19.
There’s Richard Lee, who had $1.4 million cash to give to the signature campaign to get Prop. 19 on the ballot, and who owns Oaksterdam U as well as one of the 4 permitted dispensaries in that city.
There’s Jeff Wilcox, on Prop. 19′s steering committee and owner of warehouses in Oakland with $20 million to spend to turn them into industrial marijuana cultivation operations.
This takes the pot calling the kettle black to a whole new level.
It’s a page right out of Karl Rove’s playbook. And to add insult to injury, it is being done in the name of “unity”. While proclaiming “divided we fall”, they are wantonly dividing the movement.
While marijuana advocates are proclaiming Prop. 19 is not legalization but thinly veiled prohibition, the proponents of the initiative beg the question by accusing anyone opposed to the initiative of being opposed to legalization.
Meanwhile the media toss red-herrings into the debate by framing it as “stoners against legalization” instead of “stoners against Prop. 19″, as was done recently by David Downs in an article titled “Stoners Against Legalization” published by EastBay Express.
Though this article can only be described as a hatchet job on marijuana advocates opposed to Prop. 19, and Dragonfly in particular, it does report that marijuana attorneys Jennifer Soares and Bill Panzer are opposed to the initiative, though it doesn’t tell us much about why. Jennifer Soares represents medical marijuana dispensaries in Southern California. Bill Panzer is a noted marijuana attorney and author of Proposition 215.
As a side note, so far 3 of the authors of Proposition 215 have come out against Proposition 19: Anna Boyce, Bill Panzer, and Dennis Peron. The other authors of The Compassionate Use Act of 1996 were: Dr. Tod Mikuriya, Ph.D. (deceased), Dale Geringer, Valerie Corral of WAMM, and Scott Imler.
The only author of Prop. 215 known to be for Proposition 19 is Dale Geringer, who is Vice-Chair of the NORML Board of Directors and state coordinator of California NORML.
The fact is, many marijuana advocates believe Prop. 19 will set the movement back decades, while making a few people very rich.
Upon returning from the Know Your Rights Expo in Anaheim, Richard Brumfield posted a link on his Facebook wall to an analysis of Prop. 19 by Attorney Letitia Pepper which concludes that Dragonfly is correct about the impact the initiative could have, and most likely will, on medical marijuana patients and providers.
Between 9:28pm Saturday and 6:12pm Tuesday, the thread logged 156 comments. The majority of them by Mickey Martin, associated editor of West Coast Cannabis; Bruce Cain, of NewAgeCitizen (who received the Bullshitter of The Week award from Mikey Martin); Richard Brumfield, owner of the Facebook wall; and 5 or 6 others. Pretty much everyone that participated made a larger number of comments than either Dragonfly or the Emerys.
The 4th message and first ad hominem attack in the exchange was posted, apparently, by Jodie Joanna Emery using Marc Emery’s Facebook account.
Marc Scott Emery
Saturday at 10:58pm
Dragonfly is nothing but a prohibition profiteering trimmer with no formal education or training, so she has no proper legal or judicial insight into Proposition 19. She’s just a world-traveling party girl who only got attention for being published in Cannabis Culture for a few pot/drug festival reports, which needed extensive editing, as she’s not a professional journalist, just a blogger who writes about getting high and partying. Why anyone takes her seriously, we can’t comprehend; all she does is trim pot once a year to make big money to travel and get high (she wrote about that in CC), and she needs to protect that prohibition-based income, so has made herself one of the faces of the anti-Prop-19 movement — but she lied about new felonies being created, just like she lies about a lot of things about Prop 19. She’s simply a paranoid prohibition profiteer. That’s what we have to say about the author of that bunk “article”. Marc is appalled by those who have joined the prohibition army alongside cops, the DEA, religious nuts, and the prison industry.
And Richard, you cannot keep telling people that you “were doing business with Marc Emery” because that is simply not true. He liked and approved of your lotion, but did not go into any business contract with you.
While it’s tempting to let that stand on its own, it should be noted that there is nothing “big” about the money one makes as a trimmer. And certainly not when compared to the kind of bucks the Emerys are accustomed to tossing around.
Fifteen comments later, writing as “Dragonflower Lyoness”, Dragonfly responds.
Sunday at 6:35am
@ jodie (who comments here using marc emery’s profile):
wow, really, jodie? have you really stooped so low? it saddens me that you have turned the corner from debating political issues to mounting personal attacks on my credibility.
you claim that i have no formal education or training? it is you, jodie emery, who has only a high school education. you never went to university at all. which might be why you would find it wise to accuse me of not having formal education, when in fact i went to university and a prestigious graduate school.
jodie, you have the audacity to say that i am not a professional journalist? not only is my first degree in english–which means writing is my specialty–i have also worked for newspapers and magazines for 11 years, dear–since around the time you started your illustrious high school career. and my professional journalism work has been not only as a writer, but as an editor, as well. in fact, when your husband marc emery saw how horrible your editing skills were when you “edited”/butchered my articles, he gave *me* the final word on my work–something publishers almost never do. you might claim, either out of ignorance or bitterness, that i am not a professional journalist, but your husband marc emery evidently thought i was a better editor than you are.
you “can’t comprehend” why anyone takes me seriously? perhaps your inability to “comprehend” is a result of your high school education. if your comprehension skills are that lacking, why don’t you ask your husband marc emery if he’ll explain to you in words you can understand why he takes me seriously? he took my work so seriously that he financed some of my travels to exotic places so i could produce more of my well-received articles for him to publish in cannabis culture magazine, and urged me to write still more articles about my adventures, even until the night before his unfortunate extradition. your husband marc emery took me so seriously that when i first sent my “why pro-pot activists oppose prop. 19″ article to cannabis culture for publication in may, he took it for his own, twisted it, and co-opted my arguments, re-casting them in *favor* of the initiative, and from this wrote/plagiarized his “why you should vote yes on 19″ blog–in the same style as my article, and even in the same format–an act of intellectual theft which borders on the unethical in the journalism business.
of course, i have no “legal training”–nor do i claim to. i leave the legalese up to the attorneys. oh, and by the way–they overwhelmingly agree with what i’ve written about prop. 19:
although it is commendable that you “attended Valleyview Secondary School from grade 8″ all the way “through to grade 11,” i’m afraid a high school education doesn’t make you any more qualified to discuss the merits of prop. 19 than anybody else. i would even surmise that it makes you far less qualified than someone who actually went to graduate school.
i know that in your eyes, i must appear to have a pretty posh life, traveling the world unifying the marijuana movement on a global scale, smoking the best ganja all over the planet, actually getting paid to write about my adventures for pot magazines, and spending summers going to epic festivals and parties up and down the west coast. but that is no reason to try to impugn my credibility.
i don’t mean to put you down, jodie–we have been friends, and just two nights ago i wrote you an email expressing my desire to remain cordial throughout this prop. 19 controversy, even though we have a difference of opinion. so my intention is not to put you down, but i must stand up in my own defense against your libelous attacks. it is quite sad, actually, that you and other prop. 19 supporters can’t come up with any real argument against our “VOTE kNOw ON 19″ points, so you feel that your only option is to attack us personally. when you are open to debating the issues at hand, as opposed to attacking my credibility, stand up and i would be happy to join you.
One of Dragonfly’s most prolific detractors is NORML’s National Outreach Coordinator, Russ Belville. He states, in one of his many diatribes against marijuana advocates who oppose Prop. 19, “I am no lawyer… hell, I’m not even a college graduate.”
About an hour after Dragonfly’s response to Emery, Mickey Martin of West Coast Cannabis magazine joins the fray. He begins by addressing her as “dragonflies” and proceeds to ask her where she went to school and what is her real name, and then proclaims that “only cowards hide behind fake names and give spotty details of their history.”
That pretty much blew any discussion of the initiative out of the water.
Sunday at 10:58am
Dragonfly is a flake, she won’t even say what school she went to or what publications she worked on (she certainly had no references or background when we first took her submissions). I graduated St. Michael’s University School in Victoria,… BC with Honours and was accepted into 3 universities, but chose to work instead, to join Marc’s organization and become active instead of sitting in classrooms for years. Marc is exceedingly proud of my writing and editing abilities, having me edit every CC article — he wouldn’t ever say that bullshit Dragonfly spouted. I’m going to email Marc what she wrote and share his response. He has told me many times recently that he used to think she was attractive but now he finds her repulsive. He also regrets having paid so much to her for travel and live it up, as she’s an exploiter and often failed to get exactly what he assigned (like taking photos of plants but not taking notes of what was what). I even once had to pay $300 of my own money to fix her laptop because she called and beg for more and more money all the time and said she wouldn’t be able to write without her computer. She used Marc for so much money, and he is disgusted by her. Go ahead, Dragon girl, write Marc a letter in prison and ask what he thinks of you and what you’ve said about me.
Sunday at 11:30am
I need to add that I was never Dragonfly’s “friend”, as I always found her to be flighty like the other “goddess” chicks who speak in breathy tones and dress like fairies and speak about being sent to earth from other worlds by magical forces for a goddess-given purpose of heavenly love and unity (Marc always rolls his eyes at those people too, because they are not rational or reality-based thinkers). And I’m surprised by Dragonfly’s lack of proper punctuation and capitalization, seeing as she’s apparently such a professional “english” writer. Marc and I often talk about and look forward to the years ahead when, after Proposition 19 passes, all of the prohibition-profiteers are recognized as enemies of progress and liberty.
At this point Richard Brumfield attempts to bring the discussion back to the initiative. Addressing Jodie Emery, he asks her to consider what it will be like if Proposition 19 passes and our worst fears about it are realized. How will she and Marc be remembered? How will he and Dragonfly be remembered? He states that we’re “all playing a part of history here and I think we should be mindful of what we write.”
Sunday at 12:25pm
I’m willing to stand up for Prop 19 because I am certain it’s better than prohibition and people going to prison and having countless lives destroyed. I don’t believe any of the paranoid delusions about the Armageddon you opponents/prohibitionists proffer. Only time will tell, and I know I’m on the right side.
Marc Scott Emery
Sunday at 5:19pm
As promised, Marc’s response to “Dragonfly”:
First off, not a single writer of any kind, Tommy Chong, Barry Cooper, Peter Gorman , Pete Brady, et al, was spared our editing. All writers were edited. Only Peter Gorman came close to having his work appear as is, but even then, we always maintained the right to edit any writer. Dragonfly never had any articles published as is, nor did we, or would we, ever promise to take an article as is. I did like S******** T*****’s work, this is her real name, I can’t stand to this that someone wants to maintain their credibility without using their real name in a pivotal ballot initiative. If Ms. T***** believes that Proposition 215 makes marijuana legal, then please, use your real name and show that you believe you are legal, otherwise, hiding under a pseudonym is tantamount to admitting that your actions in California ARE illegal, contrary to what you claim. S********, you claim that marijuana is legal under proposition 215, so stop hiding under a pseudonym. Pseudonyms are for people who are acting illegally in the jurisdiction they write from.
Secondly, Jodie Emery is simply the best editor I have ever met, far superior to my editing skills, and without question edited every article in Cannabis Culture after my edits, including Miss T*****’s work. And every article was the better for it. There is no truth to the claim that Miss T*****’s work was ever accepted with the assurance that it wouldn’t be edited. Articles are edited for length (they have to fit), grammar, spelling, and a variety of reasons, though this isn’t necessarily a reflection of any writer’s ability.
I am disgusted with Miss T*****’s defense of the exploiter profiteers who cash in on the sick and dying with $300-$400 an ounce cannabis in what Miss T***** describes as a virtually legal industry under proposition 215. Cannabis prices have not gone down at all for medical users in 14 years, they are still being gouged by black market prices and thousands of producers & dispensary owners live large at their expense. Proposition 19 will drastically lower prices to $12.50 an ounce for their own homegrown to a retail price of $50-$60 an ounce plus tax by November 2011., and this is what opposition to Proposition 19 is entirely and exclusively about, protecting the lucrative income of the existing black market cartels, gangs, police, prison industry and exploiter commercial growers of “compassionate medical pot”. Any other explanations are a scam and smokescreen.
— Marc Emery, August 29, 2010
Sunday at 8:51pm
@jeri and michael: thank you for bringing this conversation back on course. jodie and mickey are clearly smoke-screening the issues. our concerns are legitimate and deserve a platform.
@richard: jeri is against prop. 19 because it takes away mmj patients’ rights. she’s saying we need to popularize this point in the media, and not focus on other negative aspects of prop. 19, such as the corporatization of cannabis, since many people don’t have a problem with corporations.
Dragonfly and Emery each made one more comment in the thread. Dragonfly simply said “Keep spreading the word” and posted the address of her blog: votetaxcannabis2010.blogspot.com.
Emery wrote that he pointed out that Dragonfly lied when she said that new felonies were created by Prop. 19 and she hadn’t addressed that. And he went on to say that she was wrong about that, and therefore it is not just possible but likely that she is wrong about other things.
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