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Friday, December 11, 2009

Cannabis Town Hall 2010 Reminds Us All that People Need Their Meds

Posted By on Fri, Dec 11, 2009 at 5:30 PM

Last night, around 150 members of the interestingly titled "compassionate community" gathered at the Women's Center for Cannabis Town Hall 2010 hosted by the Harvey Milk Cannabis Caucus. (Believe it or not, Harvey Milk's prime issue was working to get pot legalized. Honestly, that's what we were told.).

By the end of the night, it couldn't have been more clear that people need better access to medication of all kinds.

The well-organized event included several speakers (Supervisor David Campos among them), award presentations, and informational tables that distributed anything from hemp t-shirts to Marijuana-laced desserts prepared by the compassionate chef John Martinelli.  

Attendants -- many of whom required canes and wheelchairs -- were decked out in all manner of brightly colored and silly ensembles. A man who calls himself A420CL (it's short for American 420 Cheerleader) carried a giant Mickey Mouse umbrella. A woman named Randy Webster flaunted a stringy Marijuana hairpin. The evening's hostess (and founder of a medicinal Marijuana patient advocacy group called Axis of Love), Shona Gochenaur, wore warm socks, high heels, and a radiant smile as she presented awards for various achievements in compassionate care.

Following the ceremony, the community feasted on desserts and several bold performers took the stage for what we'll call an entertaining musical performance. 

Everything transpired pretty much according to plan up until the end of the night, when a man in a black leather hat with ear flaps started trouble at the dessert station. From outside, all that could be heard was a loud crash.

Chef Martinelli had apparently upended his creations in protest of the harassment from the leather ear-flap guy. Gochenaur asked Martinelli to leave to premises. Martinelli accused her of allowing the tragedy, then stormed out.

The ear-flap man also left the building in a huff and shouting. "Don't disrespect me because I'm black," he announced. He reentered and exited the building several more times, all the while yelling about discrimination, but his goals were unclear.  

On his final exit, the lady with the pot hair clip stopped him. "I haven't gotten a hug from you yet," she said, embracing him.

Bystanders agreed that the explosive events at the end of the night signified the need for troubled people to acquire and stay on medication, including but not limited to Marijuana. It also demonstrated how the community would come together, explained social worker Victor Nelson, to take care of its own.


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Ashley Harrell


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