With Cinco de Mayo fast approaching, the Dallas/Fort Worth chapter of NORML, the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, is scrambling to remind Americans that if you're going to undermine a holiday designed to celebrate a culture's heritage, you don't have to just do it by getting hammered. You can also do it by getting high.
Our local weed activists are throwing a festival on Saturday called Cinco de Mota at Dallas City Hall. The 42-year-old organization's goal, active in over 300 cities around the world, hopes to "build a party around the march, to send a strong message to our community leaders that Texans want to see an end to the drug war and the violence associated with marijuana prohibition around the world."
Unfair Park emailed Shaun McAlister, the Executive Director of DFW NORML. He said he'd call at noon. Like clockwork, he was 22 minutes late.
"This is a glaring example of how the US government oversteps their bounds," McAlister said about the country's pot ban. "I should be able to put whatever I want in my body, whether it's a 1,400-calorie burger or a bullet. Both of which are legal."
"Colorado and Washington are going to vote and most likely legalize recreational use in 2012," he added. "The question that I pose to Texas is, if people are going to pass marijuana legislation, does Texas want to be one of the first and make money? Or continue to imprison people more than any other country in the world?"
Last year only 150 people showed up, and the festival lasted about three hours. But this year, McAlister's at the helm. He set aside more money for this year's festival/demonstration, and he booked National NORML Outreach Coordinator "Radical" Russ Belville as the event's keynote speaker and emcee.
"We don't need to hide in the shadows," McAlister said, before poetically adding: "We need to come in the light with this."
They'll have live bands, 10 vendors, fire spinners, parkour performers, a "cannabis all-star drum line" from UT-Arlington, artists, a raffle of three full-sized handmade Texas hemp flags (the star's replaced with a marijuana leaf), a 420 Truth Enforcement Vehicle (pictured above), masseuses, and glory to God, six food trucks.
Here's the maybe tentative schedule: Cinco de Mota starts at 2 at City Hall. There will allegedly be a March portion at 4:20 sharp to the JFK Memorial. After occupying the knoll for an hour, interacting with media, they plan on walking back.
"Hopefully I'm going to see a light saber battle at night time," McAlister said, before adding, "I've got a light saber myself." We're really not sure what that's about.
At the end of the conversation, though, it was time to talk about what was really important: chiefly whether or not people would be able to get stoned out of their motherfucking skulls at City Hall.
"If 1,000 people show up at this thing, I don't really see people stopping anyone from doing anything. Because it's Cinco de Mayo, people are going to be drunk off margaritas," he said, spitting on the drink name as he said it. "NORML does not condone any illegal activity of any kind," McAlister continued. "But if a shit ton of people show up, who knows what can happen."
No need to pile on here, Shaun. You had us at "1,400-calorie burger."