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If You Can’t Grow It, It’s Not Legal!



home grow laws

If you can’t grow, it’s not legal!

When it comes to cannabis legalization, personal freedom and autonomy sits at the heart of the movement with the conversation often pivotiting around the principle of “my body, my choice.”


This axiom, a battle cry for sovereign dominion over one’s own physical and psychological domain, underpins the very essence of the legalization movement. Yet, as we navigate the complex and often convoluted paths towards a society where cannabis is not only accepted but integrated into the legal fabric, a crucial component of this autonomy is frequently overlooked or, worse, deliberately omitted: the right to home cultivation.


The notion that any form of cannabis legalization without the inclusion of home grow rights constitutes a scam is not just a radical opinion but a reflection of a deeper understanding of what it means to be truly free.


At its core, cannabis legalization is about dismantling the archaic and punitive structures that have long governed our relationship with this plant. It’s about reclaiming a piece of autonomy that has been systematically denied by decades of prohibitionist policies. Anything less than the full empowerment of individuals to cultivate their own cannabis is a half-measure that leaves the door ajar for governmental overreach and control.


However, while the absence of home grow rights in legalization frameworks is a glaring omission that undermines the principle of bodily autonomy, the notion of judging individuals for their participation in the existing legal cannabis market is a counterproductive stance.


To vilify those who, for various reasons, partake in the legal purchase of cannabis, is to miss the broader point of the legalization movement. It’s not about creating divisions among those who advocate for cannabis freedom but about recognizing the diversity of circumstances and choices within our community.


To argue for home grow rights is to advocate for the very essence of “my body, my choice” within the context of cannabis legalization. It is an assertion that true freedom comes not only from the ability to consume cannabis without fear of legal reprisal but from the unalienable right to cultivate one’s own source of healing, recreation, and spiritual exploration.


This right is the cornerstone of any genuine attempt at cannabis legalization, signifying a move towards complete sovereignty over one’s body and mind. Anything less than this is not just an oversight; it’s a deliberate act of control masquerading as liberation, leaving individuals at the mercy of governmental and corporate interests that have no place dictating the terms of our relationship with this plant.



The inherent right to cultivate our own sustenance, whether for nourishment or medicinal purposes, forms an essential pillar of human autonomy and freedom. This principle extends beyond the simple act of gardening to encompass a broader assertion of our sovereignty over the natural world and our place within it.


The notion that certain plants, including cannabis, can be deemed illegal by governmental entities is not just paradoxical—it’s an affront to the fundamental freedoms of every earthling. This ludicrous stance equates to an assertion of ownership over nature itself, suggesting that the government has the authority to regulate the very essence of the earth’s bounty, as absurd as claiming dominion over the air we breathe or the sunlight that graces our skin.


Criminalizing nature represents more than just a peculiar policy misstep; it signifies a profound attack on the sovereignty of every living human being.


Such policies don’t just deny access to a plant but undermine our very right to self-determination, to choose how we heal, nourish, and enrich our lives. By excluding home-growing rights from cannabis legalization efforts, governments perpetuate a form of criminalization that directly impinges on our right to medicine, to life, and to the pursuit of happiness.


The exclusion of home cultivation rights from cannabis legalization frameworks essentially continues the legacy of prohibition under a different guise. It suggests a continuation of the state’s interference in personal choices and the private use of a plant that has been a part of human culture for millennia.


This interference isn’t just about cannabis; it’s indicative of a larger issue where governmental bodies assume the right to dictate the boundaries of personal freedom and autonomy. The legalization of cannabis, if it is to be meaningful and just, must inherently include the right to grow this plant in the privacy of one’s own home.


Without this provision, legalization becomes a hollow gesture that fails to address the core issues at the heart of cannabis prohibition: autonomy, freedom, and the right to self-determination.


Home cultivation of cannabis stands as a testament to the principle of “my body, my choice,” a mantra that should guide our approach to cannabis policy and beyond. It’s about recognizing that, as sovereign individuals, we have the inherent right to make decisions regarding our health and well-being without undue interference from the state.


It’s about acknowledging the absurdity of criminalizing nature and the importance of reclaiming our autonomy over our bodies and minds.


Therefore, true cannabis legalization must encompass the right to home cultivation.


 It’s a matter of principle, a declaration that we, as individuals, have the sovereignty to engage with the natural world in a manner that respects our autonomy and freedom. Anything less is not genuine legalization but a perpetuation of the same oppressive principles that have governed cannabis policy for decades. In championing the right to home grow, we advocate for a more just, equitable, and free society where individuals are truly sovereign over their own lives.



Creating a unified front in the battle for cannabis legalization requires a nuanced understanding of the complex landscape we navigate.


The quote suggesting that those who partake in cannabis from dispensaries in states without home cultivation rights are “complicit in prohibition” presents a dichotomous view that simplifies a multifaceted issue. While it is true that participation within these frameworks does, on a fundamental level, endorse the existing model, the reality of human needs and societal pressures complicate this perspective.


The realm of cannabis legalization is mired in grey areas, where individuals’ needs for medical relief, mental wellness, and leisure intersect with legislative progress and societal norms. To categorically judge those who utilize cannabis within the confines of existing legal frameworks is to ignore the diverse motivations behind cannabis use.


For many, especially those seeking therapeutic benefits, the legal avenues for accessing cannabis, albeit flawed, represent a significant improvement over the dangers and uncertainties of prohibition. The choice to use cannabis within these systems is not necessarily an endorsement of their limitations but a pragmatic decision driven by immediate needs.


Acknowledging the journey towards full legalization as a process rather than a fixed endpoint invites a more compassionate and understanding approach to advocacy. The journey of cannabis reform is one of incremental progress, where each victory lays the groundwork for the next.


Modular legalization, the idea that we can build upon successive legislative achievements, allows for a pragmatic approach to reform. It recognizes that while initial laws may not include home cultivation, future amendments could rectify this oversight. This approach encourages engagement with the system to foster change from within, rather than alienating those who find themselves navigating the imperfect realities of current laws.


It is crucial to understand that participation in the current cannabis ecosystem does not make one a traitor or a supporter of statist overreach. Instead, it reflects the pragmatic choices individuals make within the constraints they face


However, it is also important to acknowledge that without the right to home cultivation, the essence of what it means for cannabis to be “legal” is not fully realized. True legalization empowers individuals not just to consume cannabis but to engage with it as a part of the natural world, free from undue governmental restrictions.


Therefore, while we strive for a legal framework that fully respects individual autonomy and the right to cultivate one’s own medicine and means of relaxation, we must also embrace those who operate within the current limitations. Critique of the system is necessary and valuable, but it should not come at the expense of solidarity among cannabis advocates.


By fostering a unified front that acknowledges the complexities of legalization and the varied motivations behind cannabis use, we can work towards a future where cannabis is truly free, and individuals are fully sovereign over their engagement with this plant.



The crux of the cannabis legalization debate boils down to autonomy—an essential freedom that should remain unfettered by restrictive legislative frameworks. While engaging in a legal system that lacks comprehensive rights, such as home cultivation, may seem counterintuitive to some, it is a necessary step towards broader reform. Participation in these systems does not denote complicity with their limitations but represents a pragmatic approach to navigating the current landscape. It’s crucial, however, to maintain a discerning understanding of what constitutes “true legality.”


True legal status grants individuals complete autonomy over their interactions with cannabis, from cultivation to consumption. Without these freedoms, the essence of autonomy is compromised, rendering individuals mere subjects to the will of overarching authorities. In the realm of cannabis, true liberation comes only when we can claim sovereignty over every aspect of our interaction with the plant. Until then, we must strive not only for legalization but for liberation, ensuring our rights are not merely granted, but reclaimed.





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Foreign Investment in U.S. Cannabis: Five Key Considerations




Cannabis investments are difficult enough when the investor is a U.S.-based person or entity. But things can get immensely more complicated when foreign investment is on the table. Today I want to highlight some of the top considerations for foreign investors and U.S. cannabis companies alike.

1. Legality could cause serious headaches

To this day, cannabis remains federally illegal. State legality has zero effect on federal law. Even the possible rescheduling to schedule III of the Controlled Substances Act (CSA) will not make cannabis federally legal. Things are clearly a mess.

In our cannabis team’s experience, a huge number of foreign investors do not appreciate the nuances between state and federal law and how it could effect them. For example, federal tax laws are unforgiving and don’t allow standard deductions for marijuana businesses. Additionally, federal illegality means that businesses will be siloed without interstate commerce, can’t get access to banking, can’t get access to basically anything for market rate, and so on.

All of these things mean that investments are simply unlikely to net big returns. Sadly to say, lots of investors end up writing off their investments. While federal legality alone isn’t the only reason that businesses, and by extension foreign investments, fail, it’s certainly a big one.

2. Cannabis investment may not be compatible with home country laws

This is actually probably more important than point 1. Cannabis is still illegal in most places in the world. There are still places where possession of cannabis can lead to the death penalty. While possession in a such a country is different from investing into the U.S., the governments in those countries may not see eye to eye, and such investments could lead to a host of different penalties. I’ve spoken with attorneys and business people from other countries who have said that foreign investment directly into a cannabis company is simply not possible.

What this can often lead to is investment into adjacent or ancillary companies in overly complicated deals. And when something is ancillary to the industry and/or a deal is overly complicated, netting a healthy return on investment is even more unlikely.

3. The cannabis industry and immigration law do not mix

Probably the first issue that comes up when looking at foreign investment is immigration and visa status. Immigration law is the province of the federal government. That means that it does not mix well with cannabis. If you’ve been in this space long enough, you’ll have heard of things like denial of naturalization petitions, denial of visas, arrests, and even lifetime bans on entry into the states. So for foreign investors who plan on relocating to the U.S. or even visiting to see the company they are investing in, there are huge risks.

4. Disclosure will likely be required

All states with legal cannabis markets require disclosure of certain people affiliated with a cannabis business. In many states, this includes investors, lenders, or people with other financial interests. Sometimes, the disclosures can be relatively benign, and in other cases much more aggressive.

For reasons expressed in points 2 and 3 above, a lot of foreign investors aren’t exactly thrilled to learn that they have to give personal data (and maybe undergo background checks) over to a state agency. This is yet another reason why foreign investments are often made into ancillary companies — to avoid disclosures. But even that isn’t always likely to fix the issue, and again, overly complicated investments into ancillary companies aren’t necessarily great.

5. Investment targets may get things wrong

Foreign investors often make a critical mistake in assuming that their targets know what they are doing. I’m not talking about operational issues — though a lot of companies clearly need help there — but about legal structures. It’s not unheard of for an investor to want to invest into a company that promises something it legally cannot do — like sell stock to a foreign investor in a state with a residency requirement. Yet things like this do happen from time to time, and once a foreign investor gives money over, it’s a lot harder to get it back.

Foreign investors who know what they are doing usually work with lawyers or other professionals experienced in their target jurisdiction, not only to diligence the target’s operations, finances, etc., but also to make sure that the fundamental aspects of the investment won’t trigger massive legal liabilities.

For some of our older posts on foreign investment in the U.S. cannabis industry, see below:

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America Can’t Defend Its Border Because Border Patrol Agents Are Smoking Too Much Weed?




border patrol marijuana policy

A Republican senator is pushing back against a recent policy change by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) that reduced the term of ineligibility for work due to past marijuana use from two years to three months. The senator doubts the trustworthiness of recruits who have used cannabis and believes that this move jeopardizes the safety and integrity of Border Patrol agents.


Senator James Lankford (R-OK) wrote to CBP Acting Commissioner Troy Miller, expressing severe concerns about the effects of this shift. He stated that the amendment blatantly contradicts the Border Patrol’s principal mission of safeguarding the country from illicit drugs.


Ironically, no one in the Senator’s office seemed worried about the US and Canadian border where cannabis has been recreationally legal for 7 years now.  Many Canadians have been stopped and banned for cannabis use, yet the security issue does not seem relevant at the Northern border, just the Southern.


While the exact timing of the CBP’s policy revision remains unclear, Senator Lankford disclosed that his office became aware of it during a briefing last month.


The senator alleges that CBP officers told his staff that ambiguity generated by disparities between state and federal marijuana regulations in places where cannabis has been legalized had a role in the policy shift. Senator Lankford did, however, emphasize that CBP, as a federal agency, is responsible for ensuring that federal rules governing the use of illegal substances are obeyed.


Additionally, the senator asserted that individuals who admit to past marijuana use often disclose involvement in other criminal activities, which he deemed unsurprising. He attributed this to the fact that irrespective of state laws, users frequently obtain marijuana from unlicensed vendors in the “gray market” due to its lower cost.


Furthermore, Senator Lankford alleged that licensed cannabis establishments frequently encounter corruption issues, citing reports of malpractices within his state’s medical marijuana program. He claimed that undocumented immigrants are exploited for labor and subjected to adverse conditions in these facilities.


Addressing worries about the health repercussions of cannabis usage, the senator cited a putative relationship between marijuana intake and diseases including schizophrenia and psychosis. Despite contradicting study findings on the subject, Senator Lankford emphasized the need for federal government screening for psychiatric disorders and illegal drug use during background checks for federal jobs.


In conclusion, Senator Lankford cautioned that regular marijuana use, particularly in states where it is legalized, could significantly affect the trustworthiness of Border Patrol recruits, especially considering the incidence of psychosis among heavy cannabis users.


Concerns Over Border Patrol Recruits’ Ties to Transnational Criminal Organizations Due to Altered Marijuana Use Review Period


Lankford expressed concern that shortening the period for reviewing marijuana use history raises the risk of Border Patrol recruits having financially supported transnational criminal organizations for marijuana cultivated by illegal immigrant labor. This scenario directly contradicts the Border Patrol’s mission and could lead to significant security and integrity issues among agents.


In his capacity as the Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Governmental Operations and Border Management, Lankford emphasized his Subcommittee’s authority over Federal hiring and border management. He strongly objected to the policy change, fearing it would undermine the security and integrity of the Border Patrol workforce. Consequently, he urged CBP to revoke the policy and reinstate the two-year review period for marijuana use among Border Patrol recruits.


The senator presented eleven questions to CBP, seeking clarification by May 7 on various aspects, including the rationale behind the cannabis policy alteration, its impact on polygraph passage rates, and any other modifications to employment standards related to past marijuana use.


In essence, Lankford’s stance is clear: despite acknowledging CBP’s ongoing recruitment challenges and advocating for legalization to bolster border security and increase the agency’s personnel, he believes that hiring individuals who may have used cannabis three months prior, as opposed to two years ago, poses an unacceptable risk.


Meanwhile, CBP advised its employees and their families against using even federally legal CBD products last year. The federal legalization of hemp and its derivatives has complicated CBP’s enforcement efforts, prompting officials to seek portable marijuana analyzers to swiftly identify cannabinoid profiles and differentiate between marijuana and hemp.


Lankford’s opposition to the policy change is unsurprising, given his longstanding reputation as a fervent prohibitionist. For instance, last September, he spearheaded a separate letter urging the head of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to reject a recommendation to reschedule cannabis.


Potential Impact on Border Security and Drug Interdiction Efforts


Senator Lankford is concerned about more than just the short-term effects of shorter qualifying periods for recruits to the Border Patrol. He predicts a chain reaction that may make border security and drug interdiction efforts less successful. Lankford contends that CBP runs the danger of admitting people who may have engaged in criminal activity in the past, especially those connected to transnational criminal organizations (TCOs), by loosening the scrutiny on prior marijuana usage. Because TCOs frequently take advantage of gaps in border control to move narcotics, weapons, and people across international borders, such links directly endanger national security.


Furthermore, Lankford questions the reliability of background checks and polygraph tests in identifying individuals with ties to criminal organizations, particularly given the evolving nature of drug-related crimes. The shortened review period may not provide sufficient time to uncover deeper associations or patterns of behavior indicative of criminal involvement. This, in turn, could lead to the infiltration of Border Patrol ranks by individuals sympathetic to or actively engaged in illicit activities, compromising the integrity of the agency and its mission to safeguard the nation’s borders.


Lankford’s worries about the wider social effects of permissive marijuana laws among law enforcement agencies go beyond the direct security ramifications. He argues that CBP’s decision may undermine attempts to curb drug misuse and related criminal activity by sending a message of tolerance toward drug use. It also calls into doubt the coherence of federal drug enforcement initiatives, particularly given disparate state legalization policies for marijuana. Lankford highlights the necessity of a unified strategy for border security and drug control, one that respects federal authority while taking into account the intricacies of changing state laws.


Bottom Line


Senator James Lankford’s staunch opposition to the recent policy change by U.S. Customs and Border Protection, which shortened the term of ineligibility for Border Patrol recruits due to past marijuana use, underscores concerns about potential risks to national security and the integrity of law enforcement agencies. His apprehensions regarding the infiltration of criminal elements into the Border Patrol workforce, coupled with doubts about the efficacy of screening procedures, highlight the broader implications of drug policy shifts within federal agencies. Lankford’s stance emphasizes the importance of maintaining stringent standards in border security efforts while navigating the complex landscape of state and federal marijuana regulations.





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Can Florida Pull 60% of the Votes Needed on Election Night to Pass Legal Weed?




florida votes on recreational cannabis and abortion

In a blow to Gov. Ron DeSantis and other Florida conservatives opposed to the measure, the state’s Supreme Court on Monday approved a recreational marijuana constitutional amendment for the November 2024 statewide ballot.


The proposal, known as Amendment 3, will legalize the “non-medical personal use of marijuana products and marijuana accessories by an adult” 21 or older if approved by 60% or more of statewide voters. It would take effect six months after the election.


The cannabis industry may have a secret “ace card” up their sleeve if Ohio is any indication off liberal voter turnout.  You may remember that Ohio voted on cannabis legalization and abortion rights on the same ballot and voting night last year.  This dual liberal ballot caused a swell or women and liberals to hit the voting booths, passing both measures in the same night.  Florida finds itself in the same situation this November, with abortion rights on the same ballot.  A “two birds, one stone” voting night may happen again as more liberals and women come out to vote.


In 2021, the court rejected two proposed constitutional amendments for recreational marijuana. But this time five justices ruled favorably on the measure with only two opposing.


The amendment was the subject of a multi-million-dollar campaign, spearheaded by Smart & Safe Florida, a group that’s collected more than $40 million in recent years. Two dozen states have already legalized recreational weed.


The Florida amendment would allow non-medical marijuana possession of up to 3 ounces, with no more than 5 grams in concentrated form.


To get a measure on the Florida ballot, supporters must first get 891,523 signatures from residents. The Supreme Court then must decide whether the amendment language sticks to a single subject and isn’t misleading, which can be a difficult threshold to overcome.


But, for the majority of justices, it met that bar.


In light of those limited considerations, we approve the proposed amendment for placement on the ballot,” Justice Jamie Grosshans, appointed by Gov. Ron DeSantis, in the majority opinion.


The state Supreme Court Monday also effectively upheld a six-week abortion ban but also OK’d a ballot measure that would guarantee access to abortion, even further raising the stakes of an already pivotal presidential election.


Florida’s Attorney General Against Legalization of Recreational Cannabis


Ashley Moody, the attorney general of Florida, expressed her disapproval of the recreational marijuana ballot issue, claiming it was deceptive and did not satisfy the required requirements.


Additionally, Moody’s chastised the proposal for supposedly benefiting Trulieve, the biggest medicinal marijuana provider in the state and the main source of money for Smart & Safe Florida. Kim Rivers, the CEO of Trulieve, praised the court’s ruling and said she was looking forward to helping the campaign move closer to the autumn ballot.


The legalization of medical marijuana in Florida stemmed from a 2016 ballot measure approved by over 71% of voters. Previous polls have indicated broad support among Floridians for the 2024 recreational marijuana measure.


While Governor DeSantis, who has appointed five of the court’s seven justices, had anticipated the court’s approval of the recreational marijuana measure, he recently expressed concerns about its potential impact. Specifically, he mentioned worries about the odor and the lack of restrictions on where and when marijuana could be consumed, including near schools. He criticized the broad language of the amendment, stating it was the most extensive he had encountered.


Justice Meredith Sasso, appointed by DeSantis and one of the dissenting voices, believed the amendment misled voters, citing its language regarding the “allowance” of recreational marijuana.


Moody argued in court filings that describing the amendment as “allowing” marijuana use is misleading, as marijuana remains illegal federally, despite its legality in over 20 other states. However, Justice Grosshans, writing for the majority, found the amendment’s summary not misleading, noting the court’s prior rulings on medical marijuana and its jurisdiction over state, not federal, law.


Potential Implications for Florida’s Cannabis Industry


There has been much conjecture on the significant consequences that Amendment 3’s passage by the Florida Supreme Court may have for the state’s rapidly expanding cannabis sector. Leading companies in the field, including Florida’s well-known medical marijuana supplier Trulieve, are positioned to profit from the growing market as recreational marijuana use gets closer to approval. With the potential to solidify its position as a leading participant in the medical and recreational cannabis sectors, Trulieve’s significant financial support of Smart & Safe Florida’s campaign highlights the company’s strategic interest in the amendment’s successful passage.


However, alongside established players like Trulieve, the legalization of recreational marijuana is expected to spur increased competition within Florida’s cannabis market. As the state opens its doors to non-medical cannabis use, new entrants are likely to emerge, seeking to seize a slice of the lucrative market pie. This influx of competition could lead to innovations in product offerings, retail experiences, and branding strategies as companies vie for consumer attention and loyalty in an increasingly crowded marketplace.


Furthermore, Amendment 3’s adoption is likely to change Florida’s cannabis laws about retail, wholesale, and growing. The elements of the amendment, such as possession limitations and regulatory frameworks, will be crucial in determining the operational parameters that enterprises in the state’s cannabis market must adhere to. Stakeholders in the sector are keeping a close eye on changes as politicians and regulatory bodies strive to create rules for compliance and enforcement. This is so they can efficiently manage the constantly changing regulatory landscape.


Political Ramifications and Public Opinion on Recreational Marijuana


The approval of Amendment 3 by the Florida Supreme Court not only carries significant implications for the state’s cannabis industry but also holds substantial political ramifications. Governor Ron DeSantis, who has appointed the majority of the justices on the court, had previously expressed mixed sentiments regarding the legalization of recreational marijuana. While anticipating the court’s approval, DeSantis recently voiced concerns about potential societal impacts, including odor concerns and the absence of stringent consumption restrictions, especially in proximity to educational institutions.


In addition to DeSantis’s stance, the passage of Amendment 3 amplifies the ongoing discourse surrounding recreational marijuana at both the state and national levels. Florida’s Attorney General, Ashley Moody, echoed concerns about the amendment’s language and its potential to mislead voters. The debate surrounding the amendment reflects broader discussions on the legalization of cannabis across the United States, with advocates emphasizing social equity, criminal justice reform, and economic opportunities, while opponents highlight public health and safety concerns.


The public’s perception of marijuana use for recreational purposes in Florida seems to be changing despite differing opinions. Voters overwhelmingly supported the legalization of medical marijuana in 2016, demonstrating the increasing acceptability of cannabis use for therapeutic purposes. Recent polling indicates a similar trend in support of legalizing cannabis for recreational use, reflecting Floridians’ changing views on the drug. The result of the Amendment 3 vote will not only influence Florida’s cannabis industry but also act as a gauge for larger social views toward marijuana legalization in the US as the state prepares for the November 2024 election.


Bottom Line


The approval of Amendment 3 by the Florida Supreme Court marks a significant milestone in the state’s journey towards the potential legalization of recreational marijuana. Despite opposition from Governor Ron DeSantis and other conservatives, the amendment’s passage signals a shift in public opinion and could have far-reaching consequences for Florida’s cannabis industry, political landscape, and societal norms. As stakeholders navigate the evolving regulatory environment and prepare for the upcoming ballot in November 2024, all eyes will be on the outcome of the vote and its impact on the future of marijuana policy in the Sunshine State.





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