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The LGBTQ Community in the Growing Cannabis Industry

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LGBTQ in Cannabis Industry

There is no denying that the LGBTQ and marijuana communities have some form of connection. In fact, the two have strongly significant relations.

The best way to start tackling the contributions of the LGBTQ and marijuana communities is by introducing Dennis Peron. A member of the LGBTQ himself, Peron is known as one of the first advocates of medical marijuana legalization in the United States. He started pushing for legalization as his partner died of AIDS.

With Propositions P and 215, two ballot initiatives that advocated for medical legalization, MMJ was made accessible in California in 1996. He also established the San Francisco Cannabis Buyers Club, which is the first public dispensary in the country.

He also worked with LGBTQ hero Harvey Milk to stop San Francisco from arresting and prosecuting individuals who are found growing, distributing and possessing marijuana.

LGBTQ Cannabis Entrepreneurs

With such intertwined histories, the two communities remain to be related until today. In fact, some LGBTQ members are making contributions to the marijuana sector today by way of entrepreneurship. Check out these LGBTQ cannabis entrepreneurs.

  • Buck Angel

Adult film star and transman Buck Angel decided to enter the legal cannabis market with Pride Wellness, a dispensary that sells marijuana products with the LGBTQ community in mind. The dispensary became an avenue for Angel to talk about their stories and to educate people about the plant. It also has a delivery service that operates in Los Angeles.

Growing up lesbian, Angel found comfort in the company of gay men. He felt accepted and at home with them, which no doubt influenced his decision to help the LGBTQ community in the best way he can. He decided to venture into the industry especially after seeing his friends suffer from AIDS symptoms.

This delivery division employs people from marginalized groups. The service has drivers who are queer and people of color. Aside from Pride Wellness, Angel works with brands such as Quim Rock with the same goals in mind.

  • Renee Gagnon

Renee Gagnon is a transwoman and founder of HollyWeed, a Canada-based marijuana dispensary. Before establishing HollyWeed, she founded Thunderbird Biomedical (called Emerald Health Therapeutics later on), which is one of the four companies that participated in Canada’s medical cannabis research and development initiative.

However, there were concerns at Emerald regarding her transition affecting the desirability of the company in the eyes of potential investors. Because of this, she stepped down from her position and chose to mentor female entrepreneurs in the sector. She went on to establish HollyWeed.

  • Jamie McCormick

Queer entrepreneur Jamie McCormick is also thriving in the marijuana sector. Also known as Flower Daddy, McCormick works as a florist and event planner who gives his events a twist. He incorporates cannabis in his work, from placing the plant in his flower arrangements to arranging a wedding complete with a marijuana bar which offered a rolling area, infused edibles, chocolate fountain, and a CBD station.

Through his work, he aims to break down stereotypes regarding enthusiasts. In fact, some of his clients even replace the traditional first toast to a more theme-appropriate first toke. His events remain elegant but more spontaneous, thanks to the plant.

To expand his business, he worked to establish his very own retail florist shop in LA.

  • Zairilla Bacon

Lastly, cannabis chef and lesbian woman of color Zairilla Bacon is making waves in the industry. As a queer woman of color, Bacon has experienced discrimination when finding clients for her cooking business. In fact, one client who was highly impressed by her reputation turned her down because of her identity.

However, she finds the landscape much easier to navigate today, especially with the public becoming more open-minded. Bacon now cooks for popular celebrities such as Mike Tyson, 2 Chainz and Tommy Chong. She also sees to it that her fellow people of color and members of the community get the help they need.

Ways to Support the Marijuana Industry

Knowing how the LGBTQ community has contributed to the emergence of the marijuana legalization we know today is pretty enlightening. If you are looking for ways to show your support to the cannabis community, here are the best ways that you can do so:

  • Only Buy from Legit Dispensaries

One of the main things that shed a negative light on the plant is underground selling. Black market product only paints the plant as an illicit substance, even when we now have legal stores which you can buy from. So, it is important to make it a point that you buy your supply only from legitimate retailers. This way, you can guarantee that the product complies with safety and health regulations, while also supporting the legal marijuana industry.

In connection with this, buying from legitimate dispensaries contribute to the strengthening of the market. Remember, investors seek to make money when they invest in any kind of market. By purchasing from legal retailers, you are showing investors that the industry is a viable and profitable investment. This can make the industry flourish even more in the future.

  • Use Responsibly

Aside from black market products, another source of the negative reputation of the plant is irresponsible to use. While marijuana has a whole lot of benefits, it can react negatively with other substances such as alcohol and illicit drugs such as LSD, heroin, and cocaine.

According to studies, mixing alcohol and THC will intensify the hallucinatory effect of the plant. This is because the liver prioritizes the metabolization of alcohol, leading to the accumulation of THC before it can be processed. The increased effect can cause impaired judgment which can then lead to dangerous situations. Other potential effects include dehydration, issues with vomiting and increased side effects.

For your safety and those of other people around you, make sure that you consume the plant responsibly. This can help not only in reducing unfortunate incidents but also in building the reputation of cannabis is a beneficial plant.

  • Seek Out Passionate Establishments

If you advocate for anything, you only seek out sources that also support your causes. For example, environment-advocates only patronize companies that take steps to become environment-friendly. The same goes for advocates of animal welfare, education and equality.

So, if you are looking for a place that will replenish your cannabis supply, you might want to look for a passionate dispensary. Of course, most of these establishments are passionate about the plant, so that is definitely a plus. However, it is no secret that some can take advantage of its popularity just to make money without recognizing the roots of the plant. This is why it is important to look for companies that truly adore marijuana including its benefits and history.

  • Advocate for Legalization

What better way to show your support for the industry than to advocate for its legalization? After all, we now have access to medical and recreational marijuana because of the people who fought for its legalization. Unfortunately, years and years of prejudice against the plant has been inculcated in the public’s consciousness.

This is why it is all the more important to show your support for cannabis. There are many ways you can advocate for the plant. Simply recommending CBD oil and other cannabis-infused products to your friends and family can be a huge help. Moreover, voting for legalization is instrumental. After all, some states have legalized the plant through ballot initiatives.

  • Dispel Misconceptions

While you may understand the benefits of this plant, there is no doubt that many individuals have misconceptions regarding cannabis. The best way to address such myths is to dispel them. So, why not educate your friend about the medical uses of cannabis?

Even for recreational purposes, the plant is proven to be useful. You can also inform them of the benefits of CBD even to everyday life. Who knows, you might end up turning them into advocates, increasing the number of individuals supporting the plant! Moreover, you will surely change their life simply by introducing them to its wonders.

  • Uphold Cannabis Values

In supporting the marijuana community, another important thing you should remember is that many enthusiasts are known to be peace-loving and very chill individuals. In fact, the hippie counterculture in the 1960s is known for its slogan, “Make Love Not War.” The Psychedelic 60s and 70s is teeming with calls for peace, love, freedom, and equality.

With these values closely linked to the cannabis community, it is important that we uphold such values, especially in light of the connection between the two communities.

Just like Taylor Swift sang, “Shade never made anybody less gay,” or in this case, it never made anybody less enthusiastic about cannabis. In fact, the years of marijuana prohibition only resulted in a stronger push toward legalization.

With the successful businesses and contributions of the LGBTQ community to the cannabis industry, marijuana enthusiasts certainly have an ally in these people. Likewise, the cannabis industry is opening up to queer individuals showing how intertwined the two communities are.

Arts & Culture

How to make a CBD latte: Wild & the Moon’s secret recipe [VIDEO]

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make a CBD latte

The vegan food joint known and loved by Parisians, Wild & the Moon has opened up its secret recipe book for Vogue Paris to show us how to make their CBD latte ‘Hollyweed’ made with vegan milk. Follow this recipe step by step and enjoy the relaxing properties of this yummy food trend.

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Arts & Culture

Rey Rey Rodriguez: Entrepreneur, Visual Artist and Cannabis Advocate

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An interview with The Mind of Rey Rey® founder, Rey Rey Rodriguez.

When did you first try cannabis?

I was 13 years old the first time I tried cannabis.  I smoked socially throughout high school, stopped around the age of 19, and then picked it back up in my late 20’s.

What inspired you to smoke?

I always had an admiration for the plant.  Everyone I idolized as a kid, and the people I admire today are all considered potheads. I grew up watching Cheech & Chong’s films, and all my favorite musicians from the 60s till today, as well as my favorite athletes, public figures, and celebrities (Bob Marley, Jimi Hendrix, The Beatles, Mike Tyson, Dave Chappelle, Michael Phelps, Cypress Hill, Snoop, Dre, Biggie, Pac, Nick & Nate Diaz, Elon Musk, Joe Rogan, Eddie Bravo and more) were / are all advocates of the herb.

Two of my favorite podcasts are B Real’s “Smokebox” and Mike Tyson’s “Hotboxin’,” where the hosts interview their guests while smoking.  One of my favorite events to watch is a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu competition called, “High Rollerz,” where the competitors smoke before they compete at the highest level.

No one can say that cannabis is a lazy or unintelligent person’s drug anymore.

What about cannabis do you like or enjoy?

I smoke / vape both Sativa and Indica, which affect me in two completely different ways.

Sativa clears my mind, allowing me to be present and to focus on whatever the current task at hand is.  Whether I’m working, reading, studying, practicing, or doing something else that requires concentration, it allows me to be more present and to dissect, observe, and problem solve better. 

Rey Rey Rodriguez working after smoking Sativa

The intensity in which I interpret information heightens, and I find myself, breaking down art, music, movies, body movement, meditation and even memories on a deeper level. My imagination and ideas are more vivid. For me, sativa is good for any physical or mental activity.

I use indica for rest, relaxation, to calm the body and mind when it’s time to wind down, and to fall asleep.  This one helps clear my mind from any worry and stress.  It zones me out, I become one with my mattress and pillow, making my body feel weightless, and filling me with a cooling effect from the darkness as I lay there with my eyes closed.  Indica is perfect when you’re ready to knock out.

Rey Rey Rodriguez napping after smoking indica

What would you say to those that still think cannabis is a dangerous drug?

I don’t think it’s for everyone but, the days of “Reefer Madness” and everyone assuming that pot will make us dumb, slow, brain dead, or will lead us to crack and heroin are behind us.  Cannabis is legal throughout the US in most states either for recreational or medicinal purposes.  Cancer, mental health, athletic recovery, brain trauma, and many other conditions are being treated with cannabis.  I’ve been diagnosed with PTSD, OCD, and ADHD.  I’m not sure if that doctor diagnosed me correctly, but I do know that his recommendation for all of those conditions was marijuana. 

Is there anything you’d recommend to those wanting to learn more about cannabis?

Anyone can do a Google search for most questions.  I like to refer those interested in current information on all things cannabis to visit High Times Magazine’s website.  And anyone that would like to learn a bit of the plant’s history and about the negative propaganda that led to it becoming illegal, should read Jack Herer’s book, “The Emperor Wears No Clothes.”  

Follow Rey Rey Rodriguez on social media:

Facebook.com/themindofreyrey

twitter.com/themindofreyrey

Instagram.com/themindofreyrey       

LinkedIn.com/in/themindofreyrey

And visit his official website:

Themindofreyrey.com

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Here’s How to Use CBD Safely Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

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Here’s How to Use CBD Safely Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

The outbreak of coronavirus disease 2019, shortly called COVID-19, has caused an unprecedented and dramatic impact on communities all over the world – including CBD enthusiasts. As governments from different states and countries impose home quarantine and social distancing policies, it is only natural that users of this popular compound are facing drastic changes in their ways of consumption in order to keep up with the protocols.

If you’re one among these users, knowing what the dos and don’ts are when using CBD products like portable vaporizers amid a pandemic is necessary to ensure a safe and fun CBD experience. To help you achieve that, we have prepared a list of the things you need to keep in mind while threats of the deadly disease is still a worldwide problem.

Read on.

Things to Do – How to Use CBD Safely

Buy Only from Reputable Dispensaries

As the health crisis worsens, supplies for resources are also expected to shrink, including CBD. Since there is an ongoing protocol for everyone to stay at home and practice social distancing, some suppliers of cannabidiol are expected to stop their operations. As a result, consumers are to be left with limited store choices, which fraudsters can take advantage for their personal gains.

In times like this, when transactions are primarily done online, it’s best to ensure that the one you’re seeking supply of CBD for is a legit and reliable dispensary.

To prevent the risk of falling victim to criminals, it’s best to limit your options to reputable stores only. Before heading straight into the checkout and providing your credit card information, make a habit of conducting a background check on the site you’re visiting first. Once you’ve verified that the details provided are true and that the store actually operates as a legal supplier, it is then that you can only start picking the products you want to get from the site.

Consider How Much THC the Product Contains

While it’s a popular belief that CBD works best with a little THC, it’s always a safe bet to get a product that only contains as low as the 0.3 percent cutoff required for CBD products. That is exactly what LA Fresh CBD touts in its products.

Primarily, this is because THC works as a psychoactive component, which means taking a dose of it can drive you straight into the cloud nine, or what people call the marijuana “high.” Since the COVID-19 pandemic has left the economy almost immobile, finding yourself in an unpleasant and dangerous level of head high will leave you helpless, as people are expected to stay on their homes, establishments are normally closed, and medical professionals are busy responding to the needs of the swelling number of infected patients.

Don’t Share

Sure, while cannabis enthusiasts live by a communal way of life, now’s not the time to remain faithful to that culture. Essentially, since the novel coronavirus has been proven to be transmittable via respiratory droplets and contact routes, sharing your vaping device with your favorite pals is a big no-no.

Aside from this, although it’s a known fact that CBD oils, gummies, and other related products are more satisfying when shared in groups, practicing social distancing of at least 1 meter or 3 feet is still more important to secure your safety amid the outbreak.

CBD Oil, Cannabis Oil

The Bottom Line

In this time of medical and economic upheaval, aligning your every action to what’s proper and necessary should be everyone’s top priority. Sure, while you’re still free to enjoy your favorite CBD products, practicing these necessary measures come as a compulsory action from anyone in the community.

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