Being “Marijuana Positive” isn’t just for stoners.

Edit funding update: as of this posting, we’ve got $2,273 pledged on our Kickstarter funding campaign, from 48 generous backers. While that’s a small start on the $31,000 total we need to raise in a little over two weeks, it is enough to get the ball rolling.

You don’t have to be a smoker to appreciate the ONE GOOD YEAR story. The questions of who can farm marijuana and how it is farmed raise issues of economic justice, democracy, ecology, sustainability, food and drug safety and civil rights. Allowing small farmers to grow openly in the sunshine and have access to medical and legal pot markets as they develop ensures that consumers and patients will be able to choose where their weed comes from and support those farmers who grow in an ecologically and socially sustainable manner.

Because of decades of secrecy and a mainstream media that loves hype, most policy makers and members of the public see “pot growing” as a dangerous, gangster activity that must be hyper-regulated as if it were methamphetamine or explosives manufacturing. Politicians would usually rather give exclusive contracts to their corporate donors than let a bunch of citizens exercise their entrepreneurship and creativity in an open market.

In California, many counties and cities tried to institute a permit system for growing medical marijuana before the feds told them they couldn’t take money from something that was federally illegal, state law be damned. Mendocino County, with an economy and culture as pot-centered as Humboldt, worked closely with growers to produce a system that, while not perfect, was very workable for most growers and officials. Other counties and municipalities in the state, however, where marijuana is not so mainstream, came up with crazy requirements such as mandating indoor growing under lights, high security fences, allowing growing only in commercial zones, and limiting the number of growers.

As a thought exercise, imagine if Napa County tried the same thing with wine growers? When cannabis is seen as a crop like any other, these regulations seem laughable and completely unworkable. This is why public perception of marijuana needs to change.

Bringing the real story of Humboldt to the screen can help promote a positive image of pot and the people who grow it.

–Mikal Jakubal