Why This Canadian Tried to Get Himself Arrested Selling Cannabis Branded Merchandise
We have a soft spot for nicknames, so much so that we wonder who the next recipients of memorable monikers will be. Thanks to his more-than-three-decades-long advocacy for cannabis legalization, Marc Emery has won favor among his backers as The Prince of Pot, and he has proven to be a royal pain for upholders of the Quebec Cannabis Regulation Act, taking to downtown Montreal on Sunday to hawk branded merchandise affiliated with the province’s marijuana culture.
The problem—or, rather, the point—is that it's now illegal to sell such goods in Canada.
I need you to witness any charge or arrest that may take place. My intent is to get charged and challenge the constitutionality of this censorship law. Please join me in front of the Quebec corporate factory weed monopoly at 970 St. Catherine St West TODAY NOON onward till 5 pm pic.twitter.com/ejO2X0oWRY
— Marc Emery (@MarcScottEmery) November 11, 2018
If one looks at his lengthy list of legal dealings, it is quite obvious that nobody will ever consider the 60-year-old shy when it comes to sherm. He had been hoping to add to his run-ins with the law two days ago, as he wanted authorities to arrest him for peddling the promotional goods. Tomorrow will mark the four-week anniversary of Canada’s legalization of cannabis, but advocates have not been able to enjoy a full-fledged high over that due to packaging restrictions and the aforementioned act. Emery finds the decree an attempt by Canadian officials “to usurp our culture,” as it prohibits the presence on non-marijuana products any inclusion of the cannabis leaf. While one could argue that he and his peers should bide their time and perhaps be grateful for marijuana’s legalization, period, Emery sees the legal intervention as a means to cut grass’s influence on his fellow Canadians.
Frustrated with those legislative clamps, he donned a “420” Toronto Maple Leafs jersey to sell such goods as buttons, cookie molds, flags, lighters, rolling trays, stickers, sweatshirts and T-shirts in a dense shopping area. We wondered, because of his geographic choice, why he had not chosen a Montreal Canadiens shirt bearing the number associated with blazing up, so we ventured to Twitter and learned the answer.
The Montreal Canadiens hockey team can no longer legally sell me or make for me a Habs EMERY 420 team jersey as it is illegal under the Quebec Cannabis Regulations Act. pic.twitter.com/EpzS8OMuha
— Marc Emery (@MarcScottEmery) November 12, 2018
His fashion choice aside, Emery noted that "all these things are illegal in Quebec under the Quebec Cannabis Regulation Act,” proudly declaring that “I’m just trying to get charged” as a result of his repudiation of the statute. Nearly two-and-a-half hours into his commercial attempt at fighting back, it looked as if the Prince of Pot would lose his crown (or perhaps gain another jewel in it, depending on what one thinks of overall mission) when police officers arrived, but they did not take him or his goods away.
Emery has since made numerous Twitter posts about his pro-cannabis identity, but what interests us the most is his use of promotional goods to paint Quebec’s authorities as engineers of an “unconstitutional” act.
Since October 17 the situation has become dire, ridiculous and extremely worrisome for the Canadian cannabis culture due to this unholy alliance of government, cops, politicians, turn-coat lawyers, opportunists (posing formerly as activists but never once arrested) & consultants.
— Marc Emery (@MarcScottEmery) November 13, 2018
For him, if Canada is to embrace the expanse of marijuana-laced living among its citizens, it should help people to pioneer its growth via promotional products. The unflappable supporter of all-things cannabis even mentioned to the Montreal Gazette that he might look to secure a permit to open a pop shop. Given the selection of merchandise that he had on Sunday—purchased from Montreal-area accessory stores after the passing of this bill—we wonder which objects he might sell, or even be able to offer, to similar cannabis connoisseurs as he tries to plant new ideas into legislators’ heads.