I want this podcast to showcase voices that are not often afforded a seat at the table – whether it be in the cannabis scene, the larger conversation about drug policy, or [positive] media representation, in general. Since me and my cis-het, white worldview will be prominent in every episode, I want to reach out to historically marginalized people[s] to include their voices, experiences, and perspectives. This includes: people of color, LGBTQIA folks, women, immigrants (especially from cannabis-tolerant regions), and the alternately-abled. I’m also interested in speaking to people who may not typically be marginalized, but are not often considered to be cannabis consumers, either: scholars/academics, religious practitioners/leaders, veterans, athletes, law enforcement, the sobriety/recovery community, comedians/lecturers/professional orators.
I started off thinking that I would really make an effort to personally open up – fearlessly placing myself within existing power structures – in these conversations. By naming & owning (and offering up for critique) my own privilege (whiteness/maleness/cisgender-heterosexuality/able-bodiedness/etc.), I naively expected my guests to meet me with an equal measure of self-disclosure. What I didn’t realize, was that for me it was a matter of courage; but for my guests, it could just as much be a matter of actual risk. I don’t want my guests to be stuck doing all the heavy [emotional] lifting. The act of divulging is a political practice; as such, it is met with politically-accordant amounts of liability. Consequences can be different for different folks, based on their identity. Personally, I don’t use my last name; as far as your preferred level of anonymity – your wish is my command. (We’ll cover all that in preliminary/pre-interview conversations.)
Having said all that – these talks are actually quite fun. As we circle around politics, pop culture and personal histories, at the forefront is often humor, even silliness. In all my episodes, you can still hear plenty of enjoyment and goofing off. I’ve been inspired by podcasts like Still Processing, NPR’s Code Switch, and My Favorite Murder. (I’ve even gone so far as to describe my show as similar to Racist Sandwich, but with a focus on cannabis instead of food.)
My Why –
Cannabis culture can be homogenous. Since we are on the cusp of defining what legal cannabis looks like, we have a unique opportunity to instill equity (via diversity) into a new industry.
My peer-group, I was dismayed to realize, is also quite homogenous. I included this focus to the podcast because I noticed that my beliefs about inclusion and diversity were only reflected in my views as I stated them, but not as often in my life as I lived it. This led to a mild panic – my unconscious bias has nothing to check itself! – which led to me questioning my own integrity as conflict resolution practitioner. And one of cannabis’ downplayed benefits is its tendency to bring disparate people together.
Since the face-to-face aspect is key, I don’t Skype. But if you or someone you know will be in the Portland area, and would like to share your/their story over a pipe-ful, I would love to hear from you. Please contact me at