Sat, Jun 6, 2020

September 05, 2017 | NORTHWEST LEAF

By Alison Draisin/Ettalews | Photo by Daniel Berman


Now in its 26th year, Seattle Hempfest, the largest pot rally in the world, brought in speakers, attendees and vendors from near and far. But some Critics say the days of a pot rally in a legal state are past its prime. those folk feel we should move toward social and cultural celebration of the Cannabis plant, rather than protesting. but there are quite a few reasons why seattle hempfest remains relevant even in our legalized state.

Cannabis is federally illegal as a Schedule I Controlled Substance, meaning the substance is said to have no medicinal uses. 

Washington state’s legal retail Cannabis industry has destroyed the ability of medical patients to adequately secure the organic, medical-grade strains and oils they may require to treat and manage the symptoms of their diseases.

Washington is also the only legal adult-use Cannabis state that does not allow home grows. For medical patients, there has been a drastic reduction in the amounts that a patient can grow or possess. Patients who choose to be vulnerable and add their names to the state registry can grow a limited number of plants and give up privacy.


How about those who live in public housing or rent from those who do not permit marijuana use on site? There are no consumption protections for these people.

There are no sanctioned public, legal consumptions areas, lounges or clubs to safely enable tourists or Cannabis users to enjoy their Cannabis. 

Parents continue to fear government intervention, as state agencies like Child Protective Services continue to work under outdated guidelines in a legal Cannabis environment.

Seattle Hempfest has been generating money and awareness for Americans serving excessive prison time for Cannabis and non-violent drug charges.

There continues to be a need for a pot rally in states where retail consumers have made progress but where patients, home growers, renters, those in public housing, tourists, parents and those still imprisoned on Cannabis charges are still left behind in the push for actual legalization. Until these issues are addressed, there will always be a need for Hempfest.