Democrats Add Marijuana Legalization to Platform

l to r: Marcia Blount of Sacramento Brownie Mary Club; Prop. 215 Proponent Anna Boyce RN; Lanny Swerdlow RN, founder of the Brownie Mary Democratic Club; & Cheri Sicard of LA NWA at the Democratic Convention.

Thanks to the efforts of the Brownie Mary Democratic Clubs and the NORML Women’s Alliance, the California Democratic Party added to its platform a plank expressing support for “the legalization, regulation and taxation of pot in a manner similar to that of tobacco or alcohol,” at its March 2014 convention in LA.

The move came on the heels of Democratic standard-bearer Gov. Jerry Brown asking on NBC’s Meet the Press, “How many people can get stoned and still have a great state or nation? I think we need to stay alert, if not 24 hours a day, more than some of the potheads might be able to put together.”

Members of NWA and LEAP joined forces at the Brownie Mary Club table at the convention, handing out green ribbons and flyers stating, “Who Says Potheads Aren’t Productive?” featuring rebutting photos of Michael Phelps, Richard Branson, Jennifer Aniston and Carlos Santana.

Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom seemed to respond in a convention speech strongly in favor of legalization. “This is not a debate about stoners,” he said. NORML has been invited to participate at the blue-ribbon panel hearings on legalization convened by Newson and the ACLU.

San Francisco has formed a Brownie Mary club chaired by NORML attorney Brendan Hallinan. Clubs named in honor of the late San Francisco activist Mary Rathbun are also forming in San Bernardino, Alameda, Orange and San Diego Counties. More at:

Excerpted from CalNORML's July 2014 newsletter. Join Cal NORML and receive our quarterly newsletter.