Marc Emery deported

Marc Emery was deported today to a maximum security prison in the United States. He sold pot seeds to willing American buyers. Not secretly mind you, but openly, paying his taxes to the feds and the province.

They took the taxes. They didn't arrest or prosecute him.

But when the DEA came knocking in Canada, our police and government were all too willing to turn a blind eye to our defacto Canadian law and send a citizen to jail in the States for what hasn't been a crime in Vancouver for a long time.

While surely we can all acknowledge that Marc's arrest and deportation are part of his very shrewd and ongoing political advocacy campaign against Canada's absurd drug policies, we should also acknowledge that maximum security prison in the States is no joke and no small sacrifice. Hell, it's no joke here.

As I crash out in my comfortable bed in my comfortable home, and know that Marc is in some terrifying U.S. private prison, courtesy of prosecutors funded by his own tax dollars, and surely entirely as a result of his very public political advocacy on pot (can't think of anyone else in Canada deported for selling seeds to the US of A), I am certain that a grave and very political injustice has taken place.

My thoughts are with you Marc. I lived up the road in Kitchener from London, Ontario, where your bookstore City Lights was located. I remember your bookstore selling 2 Live Crew and Body Count tapes when nobody else would. I remember reading about the cops seizing High Times magazine and bongs from your store in the K.W. Record. Especially when you sold them on Sunday. Because you thought those rules were bullshit too.

Just like the suggestion seems absurd that the government could properly stop us from listening to 2 Live Crew ("Let's get butt naked and fuck") or banging our heads to Ice T's somewhat sad metal band ("Cop Killer") or reading about some bud festival in Amsterdam hosted by bikini clad models, I'm certain the idea that we have sent you to maximum security prison in the United States for selling pot seeds will be widely understood to be a travesty of justice ten years from now.

Hopefully you won't have to wait that long.

Those of us who value self determination, autonomy, free speech, and human rights are thinking about you and your work tonight. While we know in many ways you chose this, we also know that it is our work to reform Canada's drug laws to ensure they are humane, health focused, and rights based, and to ensure that you come home recognized for your unapologetic actions. Be strong. Be safe.Visit pivotlegal.org for more information about Vancouver's low-income housing crisis. 

Go to David Eby's blog to read more important posts.

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