LMP-Press Staff Writer, BONG - Big
Oscar N. Goodweed
(Camden NJ/Philadelphia Pa-USSA) - At 400 o'clock approx 60-75 citizens gathered at one of the most respectedly symbols of freedom in the entire free world. Liberty Bell National Park, home of the liberty bell. Citizens from all over the Philadelphia region lead by Edward "njweedman" Forchion founder of the Legalize Marijuana Party participated in the Millennium Marijuana March by openly Invoking their ninth amendment right to regulate thier own bodies by ingesting (smoking) marijuana thoughout thier peaceful civil dis-obedience protest.
At 4:20pm with Pot culture symbolism in mind and after declaring
himself an American Dissident "njweedman" lead a peaceful slow procession
around Independence Mall (serveral times), which emcompass's the liberty
bell complex. Most of the marcher's were passing around phat Spliff's Ed
provided, in a unique act of Brotherly Love. Which Philadelphia is supposed
to represent. "One brother sharing his weed with his fellow brother's and
sister's. The Federal park police didn't interfer with the march/protest
but instead cleared tourist out of the way of the sign toting, pot toking
protester's. No one was arrested, but a strange think did occur. A group
of Chinese tourist were prevented from talking to Ed. One bi-lingual Chinese
tourist slipped by the federal police and begun questioning Ed about this
protest. In less than three minute's she was surrounded by three male federal
police officer's who then escorted her and her entire group away from the
area. She was terrorized, although no major news media reported this, many
of the protester's were video taping the whole incident. ( this will soon
be available on the Internet- via the LMP website) I'm sure Tiamaian square
ran thru many minds both tourist and protester's. The U.S. federal Park
Police prevented American Dissident Ed Forchion from talking to foreign
tourist, by removing the tourist.
One protester Emily from - center City Philadelphia distributed the sign's for the protester's to carry that she created reading; "Stop the Drug Wars", "End the Prison State"; "Just say no to MCCaffery", "Re: Legalize It!". The sign's were creative home made sign's that displayed the groups true grass roots. As well as being decorated with real grass images. She said, she learned of the march at www.cannabis2000.com a site run by Dana Beal of the Cure-not-wars org, a leading reform group from NYC. She said she was compelled to participate and planned on helping in other's. Other's brought fruit, some brought obvious munches like "REESE peanut butter cups", some promised to form a group trip to Washington D.C.'s July 4th. protest in front of the Whitehouse. All were happy to participate in a world wide event. Over eighty cities world world were expected to participate.
Many of the tourist passing thru gave thumbs up signs and showed support by openly repeating pro-marijuana chants this group of Freedom seeker's were signing like: " Taxiate don't incarcerate"; End the war on us., there is no war on drugs it's a war on us, end the U.S. war on us.Legalize!" . Passersby's were given Jury Nullifiication phamphlets, other's had a magizine titled "10 reason's why Marijuana should be legal" handed to them. Voter registion forms were attached to all.
Many people just steered around the peaceful group of freedom fighting potheads. But one irate tourist who didn't want to give his name said, " they should be ashamed of themselve's look at all the kids here, their here to learn about freedom and the revolutionary war and these idiots want to get high in public." (Dah) - Ruth a mother of three teenager's from Allentown PA., said she "I didn't know about this beforehand but I'm glad to see it, even though I don't agree with what the protester's are saying I'm glad my kids had the oppurunity to see citizen's exercisering their free speech rights, and the right to peacefully assemble, it was a valuable learning exeperince for my kids" she said. She was then surprised to learn that two of her daughter's (18-15) agreed with the protester's. Marijuana should be legal, and of all the places to exercise individual civil liberties this was the perfect place.
Maybe there still are some places where liberty still exist in this country. Today it was so here at Philadelphia's liberty bell park. It was obvious the Federal Park police didn't want to arrest anyone for smoking marijuana. One supporter who only wanted to be descibed as "KAYA JOE, said "If people around the county just started in mass as we have today, to openly defy the War on Drugs policy, of totally banning marijuana then "we the people" could win this war on us" He said, "Millions use marijuana daily for a variety of reason's. It seems the medical reason has gotten some ligitamacy latedly but other use for spirutal, a recreational." . When questioned further about recreational use KAYA said, "why do you have to be sick to use marijuana to feel good. Marijuana make's you feel good regardless of if your deadly sick or not, what's wrong with feeling good. Viagra is nothing but a feel good recreational drug, but because so many of old white dude's in Congress wanted to use it ( Bob Dole) it has become a very popular legal feel good recreational drug. It's obsurd to be locking up people for using marijuana, which also makes you feel good"
The Philadelphia/Camden participation although small was
a success, with no arrest. The only problem as described by Juan Rivera
from Camden was the New Jersey contingent had planned to walk across the
Ben Franklin Bridge's walkway to the liberty bell was informed just prior
to the event that the bridge's walkway was closed due to repairs. "instead
of getting mad "Ed" passed out some weed, and we just smoked some, and
car pooled across, that's just how potheads are!".
SINCE NO ARREST OCCURED AT LIBERTY BELL - I DECIDED TO REPEAT IT DURING
THE REPUBLICAN CONVENTION ( AUGUST 2nd 2000 )
For Liberty Bell homepage see: