We here at the Smokers Club have more international influence than you may have thought.
#WeAreBG is popping up all over social media again after Brittney Griner’s appeal was filed a couple weeks ago. American allies like public figures VP Kamala Harris and former basketball champion Dennis Rodman, as well as Lebron James and Stephen Curry, continue to step up to defend Brittney Griner, and in Rodman's case, potentially take a flight to Moscow. Considering the popularity of American pop culture in Russia, Mr. Putin may find himself more at odds with his own people over the Brittney Griner case than with the American government.
Russian law on cannabis (or what they like to call narcotics) is contained in Article 228 of the Russian criminal code. It is otherwise called “The People’s Statute” because more people are imprisoned under it than any other crime, a quarter of Russia's prison population. Griner's doctor’s note displayed by her attorneys, Maria Blagovolina and Alexander Boykov, is being dismissed as evidence because Russia doesn't recognize the medical components of weed.
Although marijuana is now legal in 19 American states, in others, like Mississippi and Louisiana, some prisoners are still facing life sentences over carrying small amounts of marijuana. This clearly illustrates the need for national and international standards regarding cannabis. Griner's case highlights the need for Federal legalization of marijuana because there is currently a hodgepodge of laws from state to state. This makes it likely to travel across one state border and get arrested for something perfectly legal in another.
In Griner’s home state of Texas, however, weed is still illegal recreationally; however, Griner’s medical card gives her legal rights to consumption. Internationally, the globe is shrinking every day; travelers such as Griner cross international boundaries with the ease of state borders in their home countries. It’s too easy for a country like Russia to use possession of cannabis to punish travelers from countries that it does not like, aka America, especially since the U.S. has supported Ukraine in its fight against Russian invasion. Now, to get Brittney back, a swap is being engineered between her and actually dangerous criminal Victor Bout, aka “The Merchant of Death” who’s being held by the U.S. for crimes as serious as arms trafficking.
Safe to say that many younger people in Russia, who have no real hesitation to smoke weed, identify more with The Smoker’s Club lifestyle and culture than government agencies. Let’s raise our doobies in the air to show support to Brittany and all others who are unfairly imprisoned for cannabis offenses.
The Smokers Club's second summer collection dropped last week featuring designers @jessecalifornia, @will.jessop, @officialwaveytiedye, and @thebeechworthconservatory and are available to order worldwide.