Brownie Mary Club Represents at Democratic Convention

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GrenribbonLast month, I was privileged enough to have helped the members of the Riverside Brownie Mary Democratic Club in the historic process of packing and sending green ribbons and brochures about cannabis legalization to the delegates of the Democratic Party for this month’s California Democratic Convention.  Thanks to the Brownie Mary Club, not only will the pamphlets and ribbons be in the gift bags handed to all 3,000 delegates, there will be a Brownie Mary booth at the convention.   And in case that wasn’t epic enough, the group was also instrumental in getting the Democratic Party of California to pass resolutions calling for reform of cannabis laws at the federal level last year.

To my knowledge, this is the first time that a discussion about ending marijuana prohibition has been put anywhere near the convention.  The implications of this are astounding: not only does it help us to put the issue at the forefront of the political mindset for the next step, it could very well influence the next phase of the legalization battle, right (or left if you’d rather) on to victory.

This is not the first time that the use of a green ribbon in the political process as we know it has occurred. In the late 1600’s England there was a group known as the Green Ribbon Club.  Alarmed at a shift towards an arbitrary government and papal influence on the throne, members would meet to discuss and debate the news, issues in parliament, and strategies to institute changes, over tobacco and ale.  They gathered signatures and circulated petitions and literature to promote their cause while defying both the throne and the church.  Though they did not ultimately win, the Green Ribbon Club without a doubt influenced the politics of the day, and I see many similarities in their story and ours.

Brownie Mary Photo: Brownie Mary Club

Brownie Mary
Photo: Brownie Mary Club

Like the many who sport green ribbons in the cannabis movement today, those original green ribbon wearers reflected the wide diversity of their movement as a whole.   They wore bows and fobs of Green Ribbon in their hats so that they could easily identify each other during skirmishes.  It did not matter that the ribbons did not all look the same, or mean that the wearers  always agreed on everything; it simply meant that they were united when it came to fighting for what they believed was right.  What mattered was that they knew when they saw green ribbons, they knew that were not alone in their fight.  I imagine this is probably very similar to how many of us feel when we use that little scrap of green to identify allies at events and court dates.

Hopefully, come this political season the ribbons that were sent will help us recognize allies in our governmental process as well.

I just wanted to say thank you to Lanny, Paula, and everyone else who made this possible and helped to re-ignite a little glimmer of green colored hope in what has been a pretty bleak landscape. Well Done, Brownie Mary Democratic Club –  I am sure that the original Brownie Mary would be pleased and awed to know that her name lives on in such a manner.