MJ Lifestyle's Third Issue—Cannabis Policy & Social Justice
We've had our first three issue topics slated since the beginning, but it was the “Social Justice Issue” I was most fired up about. I would have come out of the gates with it, but knew that we needed to establish trust in the space before such brave women would welcome us into their lives—especially in states where cannabis is still illegal. As I’ve mentioned before, I often questioned why I jumped so far into this passion project, with only the experience of a digital creative and avid consumer. Creating this issue has granted me many answers; I’m no longer wondering why, but how.
How much louder can our voices get?
Celebrating Cannabis Equity Consultant, Advocate and Applicant Nina Parks on the cover and interviews with powerhouses Shaleen Title, Jervonne Singletary, and Sabrina Fendrick, MJ gives an inside look at the necessary lengths needed to overcome the significant downfalls of cannabis prohibition. “For 90 years, cannabis was criminalized, and the impacts of that criminalization were borne on communities of color at a disproportionate rate. Cannabis prohibition remains one of this country’s most flawed policies,” says Jervonne Singletary, Asst. Vice-President, Legislative Affairs, NYCEDC. Thousands of non-violent individuals are sitting in cells awaiting expungement of marijuana charges while we flaunt our cannabis yoga retreats and CBD suppositories.
In 2017, Marijuana Business Daily found a significant decrease in women holding executive positions in cannabis falling from 36% in 2015 to 23% in 2017. And though it isn't surprising, they cited 81% of the industry as being white-owned; indicating that all other races and ethnicities combined make up just 19% of the market. The data shows that it is imperative we join forces to maximize opportunities for all. MJ Lifestyle proudly provides free brand consulting to qualified companies while dedicating space in the magazine and online to help promote equity brands.
This issue also introduces the heartbreaking and terrifying reality of Medical Kidnapping with mother/survivor Maria Selva and her eight-year-old daughter, Ali from Orange County. Nothing seems more terrifying than lawmakers making uneducated decisions in our legislature, as a parent, I urge other parents to educate themselves on city, state and federal .
Among my travels, I flew into Dallas for a quick trip to interview 14 women currently standing up for medical legalization in Texas. These women (almost all mothers), testifying at the Capitol to defend our girl MJ are heroines and true suffragettes of cannabis prohibition. Like most of the US, Texas cannabis patients are still fighting for the legalization of a plant that's healing effects have been well documented and scientifically proven.
The anti-prohibitionists featured in this issue are leading the charge for social equity in the cannabis industry and I am completely humbled by these women. We invite you to see for yourself the incredible women sharing their voices and knowledge and power. May you find yourself inspired to advocate, even if it is just bringing it up in casual conversation. I’m eternally grateful to the women who made Issue III everything that she is. Bravo women!
She’s off to print! Expected ship date is July 1st, 2019
MJ LIFESTYLE PARTNERS
MENDER @Mender.Shop / TAYLOR + tess @taylorandtess / Aeon Botanika @aeon.botanika / Besito @Besito.LA / The Garden Society @GrdnSociety / Tonic @Tonic_CBD / Potli @GetPotli / Elevate Herbs @ElevateHerbs / The Botanical Joint @TheBotanicalJoints / Quim @ItsQuim / Plant & Prosper @plantandprosper
Erin Willis @Mother_Indica / Rachel Bussey @MessyBunKitchen / Nicole Fox, MPH, RD @NicoleFoxRD / Kristen Williams @HempsleyHealth / Eva Green @TheRealEvaGreen / Allison Ray Benavides, LCSW @freckled_fawn / Elizabeth Conway @surterrawellness / Kaisha-Dyan McMillan @ahsiak / Betsy Kabaker @beetzkabeetz
Charmaine Esmeralda @vielciv / Marshall Cox @secretarystudio / Lindsey Michelle Williams @lindseymichellebelle / Keti Chikhladze @immigrantstoner / Dacy Kolsky @dacykolsky / Tina Romo @tinaromo1 / Michelle Draper @draperbeauty / Clarion Alley Mural Project @clarionalleymurals
INSIDE ISSUE 03