Greene Lives Matter: Charlo's Fight For Freedom
READ AND LISTEN TO OUR FIRST INTERVIEW WITH CHARLO GREENE FOR MORE BACKGROUND ABOUT THIS STORY.
You may remember our former Honored Herbalist as the woman who quit her television broadcasting job, proclaiming, "Fuck it, I Quit!" However, Charlo Greene has been a staple in legalizing cannabis in Alaska as well as a profound leader in creating a private patient club to provide access to medical cannabis for patients. Her success may be a threat to authorities, who target and victimize African Americans in the War On Drugs and police brutality cases. Despite how the media may be twisting her story, altering her image or trying to ruin her reputation - Charlo Greene is holding her head high while still fighting for cannabis rights for herself and her community.
Charlo knew she was taking a risk by opening the Alaska Cannabis Club before the marijuana laws of her state were clarified. Yet, she still found it important to provide medicine to those who were legally allowed to consume cannabis. While cannabis did become legal for medical patients, it is still illegal in the eyes of federal agents who made many undercover visits and conducted raids at the Alaska Cannabis Club. The raids resulted in Charlo accumulating ten felony and four misdemeanor charges.
After all of the hard work and effort she has put into the legalization efforts in Alaska, Charlo is heartbroken that neither her cannabis club or the cannabis community of her state has shown her any support. The state looks at her as if she has had no benefit to the community. She said, "After legalizing, it was about how ghetto I was, how trashy I was. Now, I haven't done anything for the [cannabis] movement except give it a black eye." She is even more shocked that after working with police officers to create the membership agreement for the Alaska Cannabis Club and being advised that having members trade amongst themselves would be a legal way of creating a cannabis club, she's still facing time in prison. Her charges have restricted her from being allowed at the Alaska Cannabis Club, the club that she created, during business hours or her bail will be revoked.
Charlo is being charged with ten felony counts of intent to distribute over an ounce of marijuana and four misdemeanor charges of intent to distribute under an ounce. She was once represented by a female attorney who recently informed Charlo that she will be closing her practice and petitioning the judge to withdraw from the case - leaving Charlo with no legal counsel for her upcoming court date on October 3. She is hoping that the judge will grant her an extension to give her time to find a new attorney, as well as get them up to speed with her case and compensate them what she did with her previous lawyer.
When asked about her morale about her case, she says, "It sucks. It sucks feeling like I'm going through this alone." She feels the authorities are trying to make example of a her - a well-known, successful black female ganjaprenuer. But, through it all she, only regrets one thing: "I regret spending so much time and energy in Alaska after 'Fuck it!' I should've worked on cultivating relationships with other communities, other groups that would actually be here for me."
To keep her busy and in brighter spirits, Charlo continues to blog and will be relaunching her website with some e-commerce. She will also be launching a quarterly women's magazine in December called HerFlower Magazine, that will share cannabis related lifestyle articles for females.
If you want to help and support Charlo Greene's case, you can write a letter to the Alaska attorney general, Jahna Lindemuth, and let her know how you feel about Charlo's case. You can also support the Cannabis Freedom Fund, which will help Charlo's case as well as others who may be fighting cannabis cases. The Cannabis Freedom Fund is working with local legislators on making an initiative to decriminalize cannabis once and for all, making cannabis punishable by fine. That money will then, in turn, put money back into the state to benefit schools and grows so that no one will have to face time behind bars over a plant.
Charlo is adamant about herbalists doing their part to change the law. She suggests that we, "Get on google and look up the citizen initiative process. Make sure that you note down all dates you will need signatures by, how many signatures you will need, and just timing everything out so that all your hard work doesn't go down the drain."