Juneteenth and Cannabis
By Jacqueline Abner
In today’s politically divisive landscape, its easy to ignore past events in favor of current cultural movements. However, if it weren’t for past events transpiring, we wouldn’t now be embracing the current historical movement known as Black Lives Matter.
Juneteenth, also referred to as Freedom Day, Jubilee Day, and Cel-Liberation Day is a holiday that is observed on June 19th in the United States. This is a celebration commemorating the day in 1865 that Union general Gordon Granger gave orders freeing all enslaved African Americans in Texas.
African Americans were now legally recognized as PAID laborers who could enjoy the same financial freedoms as whites.
How does this all tie in to the cannabis industry and current events you ask? Well, for one, African Americans are arrested for non-violent marijuana crimes at almost four times the rate as white Americans according to the ACLU. African American entrepreneurs in the cannabis space are few and far between, likely due to these unnecessarily harsh barriers facing them.
Sanctuary would like for you to join us in celebrating Juneteenth by recognizing the contributions of African Americans specifically within the cannabis space. Here are a few African American cannabis entrepreneurs you may or may not have heard of.
African American Cannabis Entrepreneurs
In 2017, your favorite rapper and ours launched MERRYJANE, an online resource for cannabis enthusiasts that has everything from recipes to news. In addition, he launched a line of strains and edibles called LEAFS BY SNOOP.
In 2017, Whoopi Goldberg launched Whoopi and Maya Medical Cannabis, a brand of products offering natural menstrual relief through medical cannabis. Unfortunately due to a dispute with her business partner, the initiative is on hiatus.
Tsion Sunshine Lencho
In 2015, Ms. Lencho formed Supernova Women, an online networking platform for women of color looking to get their feet wet in the cannabis industry. In addition to being an entrepreneurial bad-ass, she is also a cannabis attorney! Get it girl.
Our second favorite rapper and yours started a line of cannabis in 2016 as part of a partnership with RiverRock Cannabis. The dispensary released the line on 4/20 (obviously) and the line includes a number of different flowers and concentrates.