These Cannabis Brands Aren’t Puff Puff Passing on Activism
Canna companies committed to social justice that want you to smoke your conscience.
You might have recently seen some black squares on Instagram from your favorite cannabis brands, but have you kept up with their actions this summer? This is an industry where the Adam Biermans of the world can swindle their way to multimillion-dollar empires while many Black and brown people disproportionately affected by the War on Drugs are imprisoned or forever marked by incarceration. Though Bierman’s MedMen seems to have finally found the bottom of its scandal spiral, scores of largely white cannabis entrepreneurs are thriving.
The brands who are trying to put their money where their mouth is often partner with the Last Prisoner Project. This non-profit organization focuses on shifting drug policy and trying to undo the harm inflicted by the War on Drugs, and it regularly expands its cannabis partner roster.
"We are heartened to see the cannabis industry stepping up in this critical time amidst calls for racial justice and a reimagining of our criminal justice system,” says Sarah Gersten, the non-profit’s executive director and general counsel. “We believe anyone profiting in this industry has a duty to prioritize restorative justice and we are thrilled to see so many companies stepping up to work with us to reform these unjust laws."
The Last Prisoner Project isn’t alone; groups like Broccoli Magazine’s small business Floret Coalition are working to make the industry more equitable and redress the criminal injustices that got us here. Honestly, it’s never been easier for a company to help these causes, so cannabis brands have no excuse to avoid taking a non-performative stand.
It turns out the apocalypse is really stressful, so if you can support someone who aligns with your politics and get high, do it. This list is far from exhaustive, just some stellar brands on our radar. See what your favorite brand is doing beyond their black square, and if you’re disappointed, either switch or push them to do more. And as always, support Black-owned businesses like:
“We feel that it is a moral obligation to give back to the communities that have been damaged by the war on drugs and help change the laws moving forward to make sure things don't continue in the racist manner that they [have] in the past,” says owner and creative director at Ladies of Paradise. “If you are making money off of legal weed, it's honestly wrong to not do what you can to help to in our opinion.”