Liberation Day event highlights global warming, marijuana use

By |2018-01-16T17:35:50-05:00May 3rd, 2007|News|

DETROIT – This year, the annual Liberation Day event is going all out. With 5,000 flyers and 600 posters hitting the streets, a dedicated Web site and a small army of volunteers to spread the word, this year’s festivities will take over Grand Circus Park on May 5 (with a rain date of May 12).
Held every year in over 200 cities across the world, Liberation Day is always held on the first Saturday in May. Originally a yearly event in New York City, the event went global in 1999. Now, Detroit’s eighth year of participation will certainly be the best and biggest ever.
“We were pleased with the reception from many local communities who wanted to be part of the rally this year. Peace and justice, drug law reform and environmental groups, as well as musicians and others all contacted me asking to help,” said Paul Pearson, builder of the Web site for the event and assistant state director for “Cures, Not Wars” of Michigan, in a statement.
Centering on several noteworthy issues, this First Amendment protest, informational rally and sidewalk march concentrates on three main issues:
*FDA continuation of Phase II and III clinical trials of ibogaine, which has proven more effective than any other method to help addiction to opiates – including heroin – with less recidivism. At least two Southeast Michigan residents who recovered with the use of ibogaine will speak this year.
*End penalties for medicinal and recreational use of marijuana/cannabis, as this Civil Rights issue needs to come to the political forefront, so every candidate for office must address their stand on this issue. Each year over 700,000 people in the U.S. are arrested for activities which are not by any standard definition of the word “crimes.” For enjoying the benefits of a medicinal herb which has never killed a single human being, our citizens are having their homes and cars seized, their children taken from them and losing their jobs and liberties.
*Hemp cultivation to help end global warming. Every environmentally-aware citizen needs to learn about using nature’s greatest agricultural crop for biomass and other industrial uses. Despite the rhetoric of detractors, the hemp varieties which grow the best fiber, oils, and pulp for paper grow the worst marijuana. This multi-use plant must return to the marketplace, with the possible outcome of saving small farmers and slowing the growth of greenhouse gasses.
Jay Statzer, state director of “Cures, Not Wars” of Michigan, has also had a Web site dedicated to the event for the past several years. As the leader of this year’s event, he will share emcee duties with Susan Sunshine, a dedicated local activist.
At least two local bands and a wonderful accordion player will have sets between the speakers. There will also be a drum circle, a sign contest (which always lends a colorful tint to the festivities), tables for local activist groups, and several high profile speakers, including college and university professors, leaders of Detroit’s Medical Marijuana Initiative, and even a few surprises.
“Please bring your camera, cell phone, audio/video recorders, banners, signs and sign making materials, noise makers, costumes, food and water, etc. Just don’t bring your illegal stuff, negative attitude, ego trips or apathy,” Statzer said in a statement.
Statzer will also once again show his “Shattered Lives” exhibit, showcasing some of the many thousands of people whose lives were destroyed by the senseless “War on Drugs.” In addition, his Lakota Hemp Display will prove to all naysayers that hemp can be used for many industrial purposes.

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Between The Lines has been publishing LGBTQ-related content in Southeast Michigan since the early '90s. This year marks the publication's 27th anniversary.