Here is an excerpt of The Art of Mary Jane’s interview with the legendary Tommy Chong. For interviews with other movers and shakers in cannabis culture, be sure to subscribe to our magazine.
The Art of Mary Jane: What was the most defining moment in your life, Tommy?
Tommy Chong: It was when I went to jail in 2003 for selling bongs. Before I went to jail I was just a comedian that did a lot of bits on pot, but after I got out I became a pot activist and I am definitely trying to get it legal now.
MJ: When did you really start pushing to legalize marijuana?
TC: The big push was during jail (Tommy Chong was arrested in 2003 and served nine months for the sale of bongs online). I just thought it was legal, I just thought it was one of those “don’t ask, don’t tell” laws, you know, because our past five presidents have known that pot should be legal. They keep it illegal for political purposes, and they just can’t bring themselves to get rid of that one law. After I got arrested for the bongs and I saw that they were serious, it was time for me to get serious, so I have been pushing for legalization ever since.
MJ: What do you think would be the best plan of action for freeing the weed?
TC: The easiest, quickest, and I think the best way is for Obama to write an executive order to reschedule pot from schedule one to schedule two. He doesn’t need Congress or anybody involved. All he has to do is write an executive order saying that studies have shown marijuana does have medical uses and therefore it should be taken from a schedule one to a schedule two available by prescription only.
MJ: It seems as though the peace movement is coming back – why do you think this is so important?
TC: The peace movement has never gone away. Man has been trying to find peace ever since he could think about war. What happens is that movements disappear from the public eye, and what you’re seeing is that the media is now focusing back on peace again and the media really creates it..the movements that you see in Egypt and the Middle East, they are spontaneous and they are just from everyday people that have access to phones and computers. Once people realize that they have been fed a lot of hogwash by these few people that control all the wealth, then they rebel.
Looking for more insightful articles on cannabis culture as it relates to you? Subscribe to The Art of Mary Jane!