WASHINGTON: Seattle Hempfest was my first-ever cannabis related event after getting fired as a local news anchor for using marijuana. I was the victim of cannabigotry and after coming out with my story, I was invited to speak about my experience on a panel among some pretty impressive people. The panel took place on the Ric Smith Hemposium Stage and was titled: Cannabigotry: We Legalized, Why Are We Still Fighting?
Each speaker was asked to define cannabigotry as they understood it. I define cannabigotry as treating someone differently simply because they use cannabis. In my experience, I lost my job as a local news anchor for using marijuana in my free time, even though I would have kept my job had I chosen to use alcohol and pharmaceuticals. To me, that is a perfect example of cannabigotry: I was punished for using a safer substance than the socially accepted vices.
In the picture above you can see the rest of the panel included Charlo Greene, a fellow former news anchor whose story went viral when she quit live on the air to focus on legalizing marijuana in Alaska; Stephanie Viskovich, a medical marijuana activist in Washington State; Allison Holcomb, the leader of Washington State’s I-502 marijuana legalization campaign; and Leland Berger, a longtime Oregon cannabis advocate and attorney. Needless to say, I was very honored to be at the same table as these experienced activists.