“It seems fitting that a plant called Mary Jane could smash the patriarchy. After all, only female marijuana flowers produce cannabinoids like the potent THC chemical that gets users buzzed. Pot farmers strive to keep all their crops female through flowering female clones of one plant, called the Mother. And women are moving into the pot business so quickly that they could make it the first billion-dollar industry that isn’t dominated by men,” according to a recent Newsweek article.
In Washington state, former Citibank vice president and mother of five Greta Carter owns the 45,321-square-foot farm Life Gardens near Ellensburg, which is now one of the largest and oldest legal recreational marijuana farms in the world. She helped write Washington’s Initiative 502, the measure that legalized pot for anyone 21 and older, and worked on the state’s first marijuana trade organization, the Coalition for Cannabis Standards & Ethics (CCSE).
“Indeed, many female entrepreneurs are striking Acapulco Gold. Though the industry is still predominantly male and employment statistics are somewhat vaporous, the power and influence of women are, by all signs, on the upswing.”
Just like in Washington, women in Colorado played an important role in the crafting and implementation of the legalization measure amendment. Female lawyers and executives put enormous time and energy into getting Amendment 64 passed, so it makes sense that they would want to join the business movement after working hard to see it enacted.
“It’s one of the fastest-moving social issues I’ve ever seen,” says Nevada Representative Dina Titus, a marijuana advocate in Congress. To date, 40 states and the District of Columbia have legalized the drug in some form, primarily for medicinal purposes. However, she is careful to point out that the war on drugs is still being fought, and when it comes to ending it, there is still a long road ahead.
Luckily, D.C. has two formidable women on the side of legalization, Mayor Muriel Bowser and Chief of Police Cathy Lanier. Despite the hurdles that Congress has set up, perhaps the road to federal decriminalization won’t be that long, after all.
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