|Photo: The Wow Report
|Dennis Peron is co-author of Prop 215, which legalized medical marijuana in California
Dennis Peron, the “father of medical marijuana” who co-authored Proposition 215, the 1996 ballot initiative which legalized medical cannabis in California, has suffered a stroke, reports Joe Eskenazi at SF Weekly.
“That’s why I didn’t give a speech at the Hemp Expo,” Peron, 65, told the Weekly. The cannabis guru and gay rights activist said he suffered the stroke about a month ago and underwent an operation Sunday to “unclog my artery.”
Peron in the 1990s came to serve as a figurehead for the cannabis legalization movement, and was highly influential in the debate in California, thus helping to change the political atmosphere surrounding marijuana in the United States.
A Long Island native, Peron served the Air Force in Vietnam and afterward moved to San Francisco’s Castro District in 1969, where he sold marijuana and ran the Big Top pot supermarket out of his home in the 1970s.
He opened the Church Street Compassion Center in 1993, the very first “pot club” in the United States, which became the legendary San Francisco Cannabis Buyers Club in 1995, a year before Prop 215 legalized medical pot.