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The Top Ten People in Marijuana in 2011 | The NORML Stash Blog

I am the producer of The NORML Network, the host of the NORML SHOW LIVE and The NORML Stash Blog, and NORML's Outreach Coordinator. I'm married, live in Portland, Oregon, and I am a registered medical marijuana caregiver in this state. I've worked days as an IT geek and nights as a professional musician. Previously, I have been the host of my own political talk radio show on satellite radio. I've been the High Times "Freedom Fighter of the Month" and I travel across the country to educate people on marijuana reform. I've dedicated my life to bringing an end to adult marijuana prohibition and re-legalizing cannabis hemp, and I'm honored to be chosen by NORML to give voice to the Marijuana Nation and to speak for those who can't speak up.

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4 responses to “The Top Ten People in Marijuana in 2011”

  1. Ten Cannabis People to Know in 2012 | Hail Mary Jane

    [...] original list appears here, but this list contains my take on their version of “Who’s Who” in our green [...]

  2. dbeall

    I have a nomination for the list….

    01. Radical Russ Belville – Norml’s voice of the Marijuana Nation, on-the-air for Truth,, without the bullshit. –and- company included…

    That’s right, get the ‘wax out of your ears’ and Listen Up… Here is the real story and why, and lets not forget to back this up with the NUMBERS. Don’t believe that reefer madness crap, because Russ will prove it wrong every time.

    There are some other great podcasters out there, some have faded away, but they all have a place in this list..

  3. Robert Delaney

    Though I may be the only one posting comments here in defense of Steve DeAngelo, I know there are thousands of people who support the man and his efforts to provide urgently (along with not-so-urgently) needed medical cannabis to a huge number of Californians.

    So, ahem, allow me to retort…

    Steve DeAngelo didn’t oppose Prop 19, but watched (as did lots of folks) the initial public debate morph into not just legalizers vs. prohibitionists, but there was a tremendous movement among large scale grow operators who fed the ‘stoners against Prop 19′ fight. They saw their businesses being threatened by increased competition and the predictions of tumbling market prices, along with the increased expenses involved in complying with laws and regulations to operate legally. They weren’t stoners against legalization, they were stoners against losing money, and when it came down to it, they had plenty of weed for themselves, anyway. Legal or not, that wasn’t going to change. What could change was their bottom line.

    You must have personally participated in a number of conferences and debates surrounding Prop 19, and you might even agree the rhetoric expressed by some speakers for both sides could sometimes sound like slick doubletalk resulting in people doubting they could trust either argument.

    Prohibitionists didn’t defeat Prop 19, nor did MMJ patients. Steve DeAngelo didn’t defeat Prop 19, but he predicted its defeat. The sheer size of the marijuana industry currently generating billions in largely untaxed, unregulated dollars while enjoying prohibition-sustained profits represents a very wealthy and powerful presence in California.

    You see DeAngelo and others on TV talking about how they are happy to pay taxes and fees for the ability to do what they’re doing. They want legitimacy.

    Ask your typical California grower if he pays taxes on what he grows (remember, I said typical, which doesn’t include the few growers actually registered with local authorities and paying fees to grow). Ask him if he has a permit to grow. Ask him if he’d be okay with obtaining the licenses and permits and paying the various fees and taxes to be “legal”. Then, ask him if he’d be willing to take a ten, twenty, thirty percent or more cut in income when prices start to fall.

    And yes, there were plenty of folks saying prices would stabilize and nobody would go broke, but there was just enough fear and uncertainty in the ranks of one of the state’s largest industries, Prop 19 didn’t have a chance.

    Nor will any other legalization effort in California until the opposition from the growers and their benefactors can be addressed.

    I’m still searching for evidence Steve DeAngelo ever said, “I’m against legalization for recreational use,” although his statement that they don’t support it has been misquoted that way. It’s spitting hairs, but any public figure (I’d include Russ Belville) certainly knows the value of that tool.

    I’m not sure what you might hope to gain for yourself or for your viewers by continuing your attack. Painting Steve DeAngelo as the enemy because he places a priority on his own front line rather than yours is what’s driving the wedge between two independent causes which should otherwise be able to coexist.

    You’ve accused DeAngelo of creating the division between medical and recreational users, when he actually promotes the idea that they are not mutually exclusive.

    You’ve said you don’t use weed primarily as medicine, yet admit it might help your aches, pains, insomnia, etc.

    Do without it for a month. What’s more likely to make you miss it? Doing without a case of the giggles, or that nagging backache that kept you up all last night?

    But you don’t buy into the notion that most marijuana use can be linked to wellness.

    Okay, you’re the icon.

  4. The Top Ten People in Marijuana in 2011

    [...] Click here to view the embedded video. As a police officer, I saw how waging the war on drugs has cost a trillion dollars and thousands of lives but does nothing to reduce drug use. Should we discuss legalizing marijuana and other drugs, which would eliminate the violent criminal market? [...]

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