Search Results: rikess (98)
San Francisco’s 4/20 celebration typically culminates in Golden Gate Park at Hippie Hill

By Jack Rikess
Toke of the Town

Northern California Correspondent

“People are coming to Haight-Ashbury like the Grateful Dead is back in town,” said longtime resident Jack Rikess. “They’re walking down the street and smoking joints. It’s going to be unreal. This could be the last illegal 4/20 in San Francisco.”
That was the quote I gave to the Sacramento Bee way back in 2010 when asked about living next to Golden Gate Park where San Francisco holds one of the biggest smoke-outs in the nation celebrating April 20th, the traditional marijuana smoker’s holiday.
Back then, I actually thought the marijuana wars were over. The public was having a change of heart and mind, and I thought that marijuana, if not legalized soon, would be decriminalized to the point of equating smoking a joint to the same enforceable penalty as pulling the “Do Not Remove” tag off of a pillow.

Aeon Byte Gnostic Radio

Jack’s Timeline of the History of Cannabis

By Jack Rikess
Toke of the Town

Northern California Correspondent

Your Higher Power provides Cannabis to the Earth.
2737 BCE:  Shen Nung’s Pen Ts’ao, in China, refers to Cannabis as a “superior” herb in the world’s first medical text, or pharmacopoeia.
For the next several thousand years, Cannabis and Hemp are utilized in almost every major civilization in the Old World including everything from paper to sails.
1632 AD, America gets a new cash crop when the Pilgrims bring Cannabis to the New World in their carry-on luggage.
1776 AD: Declaration of Independence drafted on hemp paper.

Jack Rikess
Oaksterdam founder Richard Lee at Tuesday’s protest in San Francisco against Monday’s federal raids in Oakland

Less than a week after federal agents raided cannabis training center Oaksterdam University, seizing property, marijuana plants, bank accounts, student records and computers, legendary founder Richard Lee has decided to quit the business.

Lee, 49, who the SF Weekly‘s Erin Sherbert calls “the most visible pot legalization advocate in the state,” told John Hoeffel of the Los Angeles Times that after 20 years, he decided it’s time for others to take over. He added that he’s concerned he could be facing federal drug charges after Monday’s raids of his university, his dispensary (Blue Sky Coffee Shop) and his home.
“I’ve been doing this for a long time,” Lee said on Thursday. “Over 20 years … I kind of feel like I’ve done my time. It’s time for others to take over.”
“I never wanted to be the quote unquote leader of the legalization movement,” Lee told the Times. “I saw myself as just one small soldier in a big war. But I look at it as a battlefield promotion.”

Venice Beach, California

Opinion By Cheri Sicard

Special to Toke of the Town
Like many pro-cannabis activists, I found myself shocked, outraged, and saddened by the recent federal attack on Oaksterdam University and other Richard Lee-owned businesses. Oaksterdam is, after all, my alma mater. The school put me on the path to becoming the activist I am today and changed my life for the better in a profound way.
I have been pondering why, if the feds are going to target anyone, it would be Richard Lee. After all, Richard has built a successful business teaching others how to be as compliant as possible with California’s murky medical marijuana laws. His efforts also resulted in the transformation of a formerly derelict section of downtown Oakland into a safe, thriving community.

All photos by Jack Rikess for Toke of the Town

By Jack Rikess
Toke of the Town

Northern California Correspondent

The demonstration that was planned for Tuesday morning to protest the most recent letters sent by U.S. Attorney Melinda Haag took on an added dimension of anger and unabashed outpouring of emotion with the Feds’ untimely raid on East Bay’s Oaksterdam and Richard Lee yesterday morning.  Hundreds of patients, caregivers and activists streamed to the steps of City Hall, carrrying signs and chanting slogans to relieve the anger most were feeling from the assault on Richard Lee. 
The elegant David Goldman, from Americans for Safe Access, commanded the podium and took Haag to task for making the assumption that most patients are basically faking it and dispensaries are nothing more than illegitimate drug dealers. David and others spoke of the Attorney General’s additional comment that she is only “going after dispensaries, not patients,” which garnered many boos from the crowd.  
Supervisor David Chu, observing the crowd, said, “We’re Black, we’re Asian, we’re White, we’re Latino, and today…San Francisco is Green!” Applause echoed between City Hall and the surrounding buildings, drawing in more supporters.

Proud storm troopers: Cocky federal agents outside Oaksterdam University on Monday morning

“Confirmed RAID currently happening at Oaksterdam University – DEA and IRS. Please come show support, bring signs, get the word out. 1600 Broadway and 1776 Broadway Oakland!”Sacramento Americans for Safe Access (Facebook status update, 8:20 a.m.)

Oakland’s Oaksterdam University, famed as the first and probably biggest institution of cannabis education, was taken over by federal agents on Monday morning.
Toke of the Town was able to confirm reports Monday morning that owner Richard Lee had at first been detained in his apartment by federal agents. He was reportedly released around 10 a.m.
Officers wearing U.S. Marshals, Internal Revenue Service and Drug Enforcement Administration jackets swarmed over the Oakland medical marijuana teaching facility at the corner of 16th Street and Broadway before 8 p.m. Monday morning, reports NBC Bay Area. Yellow “crime scene” tape was keeping everyone away.

Old Hippies Cookbook
“Fifteen minutes before the homeroom bell, I spy a long-haired student being dropped off by his long-haired father in a Prius in front of the school with a public radio playing and a Greenpeace sticker on the bumper.”

​By Jack Rikess

Toke of the Town

Northern California Correspondent

Jazz Musician’ Son Brings Brownie To Fourth Grade Class!

Panic broke out this morning at Redwood Elementary School when a local jazz guitarist’s son smuggled in through the opened doors of the grammar school a “red” sequestered Tupperware-covered container of evenly-cut Betty Crocker’s “More Fudge Than Fun Brownies,” for Pebbles Shapiro-Naguchi’s birthday party. There’ll be no birthday celebration in Room 102 this afternoon because of the quick judgment of a teacher who thinks profiling is more than tracing a child’s silhouette.  
This fast-acting teacher intercepted the suspicious treats once the child was caught off-guard opening his desk. Fearing the inevitable — that the child was part of a drug ring intended to imprison our innocent youth from their eight to nine hours of day of playing ‘World Demands To Die Warfare,’ videogames, the untested, sugar-laced, possible store-bought opiates were removed. 

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Jack Rikess
Toke of the Town Northern California Correspondent Jack Rikess always tokes up before making a big decision

Or, Should Jack Renew His Medical Marijuana Card?

​​By Jack Rikess
Toke of the Town

Northern California Correspondent

I suffer from debilitating migraines that leave me temporarily blinded followed by a headache that feels like someone has taken a rusty blade to my brain with the full intent of whittling on it for the next couple of hours. Cannabis relieves the pain and lessens the thumping bombardments associated with the war games being played in my cerebellum. 
In another lifetime, I worked in a Navajo Old Folks home in Arizona. I wrenched my back lifting an overweight person who had passed out, which snared me in a dead weight death trap. My vertebrae have never recovered. 


​​​By Jack Rikess

Toke of the Town
Northern California Correspondent

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) told a constituent in favor of legalizing marijuana that he doesn’t support the idea because drugs like pot lead to death.
Mitch McConnell lies about marijuana because he forgot how to tell the truth. Working for the Tobacco Industry since you were a pup politician will do that to you.
You can tell how out of touch a person is by the archaic issues they’ve raised. Mitch feels comfortable going with the baseless lie that cannabis kills. Hey Mitch, as long as you’re living in the 1950s, why don’t you go after comic books and rock ‘n’ roll too, while you’re at it?!  
A little hint: Today’s fear mongers are finding success with the more robust and contemporary propaganda themes like “Kid Brings Magic Brownies to Preschool” and “Are Stoner Drivers the Death of Us All?” to keep the Reefer Madness alive.

Berkeley Patients Group

By Jack Rikess
Toke of the Town
Northern California Correspondent
That crazy cannabis carousel continues to spin as the C. Hag (as in Kali U.S. Attorney Melinda Haag, who sees a working dispensary and has the irascible need to close it) sends out another letter. Berkeley Patients Group is the victim of being too close to where kids could possibly be.
This time is a double-whammy, the Center for Early Intervention on Deafness, which also houses a preschool, and Ecole Bilingue de Berkeley, a French bilingual grade school, are within the 1,000 feet no-no zone. 
Berkeley Patients Group took over an old car dealership and with the wrought-iron fence and has a visible security patrolling, when I went there, it felt like an island. A huge building with very little foot traffic, very secure and seemingly alone in a converted strip-mall that many patients have pass it by thinking it was a church or some other municipal building.
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