Pride: confidence and self-respect as expressed by members of a group, typically one that has been socially marginalized, on the basis of their shared identity, culture, & experience
Sometimes being a part of one marginalized group makes it easier to relate to folks of another. For years, cannabis consumers and gay people were both seen as outcasts. A mecca of sorts for the LGBTQ community and home to the Haight-Ashbury district made San Francisco a place that seemed to welcome people who weren’t welcome elsewhere. As NORML Director Dale Gieringer said, “It’s sort of the same issue, freedom of bodily choice.”
In the 1990s, medical cannabis proved to be one of the only solutions to the HIV/AIDS crisis that plagued the LGBTQ community. Advocates like Dennis Peron and Brownie Mary led the charge for legal medical cannabis. Both were arrested several times, and Peron was shot by the police during a raid. Their passion for getting medicine to patients by any means necessary laid the foundation for the legal industry we have today.
Those who were once considered the outcasts of society are now at the center of the conversation. Cannabis was illegal, now it’s essential. Being gay was something to hide, and now it’s something full of pride. There is still a lot of work to be done to create an equitable society, and we are happy to be a change agent in that process.
We’re proud to be a cannabis company — and we’re proud to be LGBTQ owned. Happy Pride from your friends at SPARC!