“At this year’s Cannabis Parade in New York City (2018), where the global movement was first ignited, several generations of supporters got together to demand an end to costly, dangerous cannabis prohibition, to promote its growing legal industry and to smoke-signal Albany that they refuse to be ignored. As attendees of Saturday’s events demonstrated, this social policy, also known as cannabis prohibition, continues to have an enormous impact on a wide variety of demographic and interest groups, from patients and prisoners to aspiring entrepreneurs.”
"Some would say the fact that the NYPD did not seem interested in arresting anyone who was getting high at the event was a major shift in and of itself. Although the NYPD cut its marijuana arrests in half last year (2017), 16,590 people were still cuffed for low-level marijuana possession, about 88% of whom were black or Latino."
“Cannabis is the crown jewel in the racist war on drugs, and we must pluck it down,” Cynthia Nixon urged to the crowd (2018). “We must expunge people’s records, we must get them out of prison. And when I’m governor, and when we legalize cannabis here, we will be sure to prioritize those communities of color, for the licenses to sell cannabis.”
“The NYC Cannabis Parade (2017) is a four-decade old original New York City tradition, part of the city’s classic heritage of cutting-edge progressive movements and protest advocacy. The Global Marijuana March was born in New York City as the first annual pro-cannabis event and since expanded to hundreds of different cities in dozens of countries worldwide taking place in hundreds of cities around the world on the first Saturday of every May since 1999.”
“NYC Cannabis Parade organizer Troy Smit told NBC News the annual event aims to 'end the War on Drugs, release the medicine, free the prisoners, heal the sick and unite the nations.’”
“At the NYC Cannabis Parade, politicians and activists spoke of lobbying local and state government leaders to support pro-marijuana legislation.”
“People rolled spliffs and passed them around; NYC Council Member Rafael L Espinal gave a speech, among others; educators educated, advocates advocated...”
"The New York City Cannabis Parade is the flagship events for the Million Marijuana March in the United States. Actually, the Cannabis Parade began as an act of resistance. Marchers were fed up with the racist police crackdown on minor marijuana possession and use charges and wanted to take back the streets for cannabis."
"At the rally, participants waved Legalize It posters and a few more exuberant stoners cavorted in giant joint costumes, the cops adopted a tacit all-toke, no-action policy. 'We have zero arrests,and we don’t plan on having any,' one sergeant said. Advocates praised the cops’ mellow take on toking as the latest sign New York was inching toward decriminalization."
"The group in the parade was as diverse as New York itself – people of all ages, ethnicities and backgrounds, people wearing all green, people in one-pieces with weed patterns and one group wearing t-shirts saying 'Law Enforcement for Legalization.'"