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Opinion: Tribes get ready to discuss marijuana in Indian Country

Filed Under: Opinion
More on: doj, marijuana, meetings, washington
     


An illegal marijuana farm on public land in California. Photo from Addictiontreatment.org

Writer discusses the first-ever Tribal Marijuana Conference, being held on the Tulalip Reservation this Friday:
The Justice Department announced in December that it would allow Native American tribes to grow and sell marijuana on their sovereign lands, which sounds about right, since THEY WERE HERE FIRST.

Tribal governments are now trying to figure out whether they want to get into the ganja game, and have scheduled a national conference on the matter to be held here in Washington on February 27.

The Affiliated Tribes of Northwest Indians, representing about 50 tribes, passed a resolution last year opposing legalization on their lands (partly due to health and safety concerns for their youth), while Washington’s Suquamish said they were exploring their options for production and sale. The Yakama tribe, with more than 10,000 members, also wants no part of legal weed, and outlawed it on both their own land (1.2 million acres) and the ancestral property (10 million acres) they ceded to the federal government.

So long as they do it in accordance with the federal guidelines set up for states that have legalized marijuana for recreational or medicinal use, any of the 568 recognized Native American tribes can grow or sell the plant. One key sidenote: When you leave the rez in a non-legal state, you damn well better leave the Kalamazoo Kush and Chinook Chronic behind, or you’re liable to be busted, big time.

Get the Story:
Michael A. Stusser: Higher Ground: Driving While Stoned and Native Americans Pow-Wow Over Pot (The Seattle Weekly 2/24)

Relevant Documents:
Department of Justice Policy Statement Regarding Marijuana Issues in Indian Country (October 2014)

Related Stories:
Bill for tribal marijuana agreements advancing in Washington (2/24)
Ray Cook: Indian Country should say yes to cultivation of hemp (2/23)
Menominee Nation leader wants to move quickly on marijuana (2/20)
Poarch Creeks bring up marijuana in Florida gaming deal talks (2/20)
Closed session at NCAI winter meeting to focus on marijuana (2/19)
Lummi Nation leader announces meeting to discuss marijuana (2/18)
Northern Cheyenne Tribe enters debate over legal marijuana (2/17)
Opinion: Vast opportunities for tribes and marijuana industry (2/16)
Evictions linked to Pinoleville Pomo Nation's marijuana project (2/13)
Washington bill authorizes tribal-state marijuana agreements (2/12)
Pinoleville Pomo Nation puts marijuana farm on temporary hold (2/11)
Brian Pierson: State law still matters as tribes pursue marijuana (2/11)
Harlan McKosato: Marijuana debate heats up in Indian Country (2/10)
Alfred Walking Bull: Move slowly on marijuana in Indian Country (2/9)
Red Lake Nation to hold community meetings on legal marijuana (2/9)
Chairman of Havasupai Tribe welcomes marijuana opportunity (2/5)
Company claims major interest in marijuana in Indian Country (2/3)
Quapaw Tribe interested in cultivating marijuana for medical uses (1/30)
Seneca Nation doesn't foresee taking action on legal marijuana (1/29)
First-ever conference to focus on marijuana in Indian Country (1/27)
Fort Peck Tribes moving towards full legalization of marijuana (1/27)
Fort Peck Tribes approve marijuana use for medicinal purposes (1/19)
MPR: Red Lake Nation takes a small step towards legal marijuana (1/16)
Red Lake Nation backs study on medicinal marijuana and hemp (1/15)
Pinoleville Pomo Nation to use marijuana revenue for programs (1/15)
Column: New Mexico should strike marijuana deals with tribes (1/13)
Native Sun News: Tribal members debate legalization of 'peji' (1/12)
Pinoleville Pomo Nation confirms deal for legal marijuana farm (1/9)
Speculation grows about tribal marijuana operation in California (1/8)
Company set to announce tribal marijuana operation in California (1/7)
Column: Legal marijuana could bring dramatic changes for tribes (1/5)
Editorial: Legal marijuana is the last thing Indian Country needs (12/24)
Some South Dakota tribes said to be interested in legal marijuana (12/22)
Editorial: Showing caution for marijuana sales in Indian Country (12/18)
Column: No rush on marijuana sales at Eastern Cherokee casino (12/17)
Opinion: DOJ marijuana policy in Indian Country raises questions (12/16) DOJ announces new policy affecting marijuana in Indian Country (12/11)

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