I appeared on the It’s Going Down podcast to discuss the climate crisis, mutual aid, and lessons learned from the deadly freeze in Texas during mid-February 2021.
Did you know it’s literally against the law to fire Austin’s chief of police?
I found myself tweeting this fact over and over again, each time some new fresh horror surfaced from Austin’s police force. So I thought I should write something too.
It would be an extraordinary fact at any time, but it seems worth repeating at this moment when so many people are demanding accountability from our nation’s police. One of the key forms of accountability under capitalism, firing a bad worker, is actually off limits.
A bill passed by the Texas Legislature will usher in a new era of legal hemp in Texas. The same bill will also explicitly legalize the sale of CBD oil supplements by licensed vendors.
“It was voted out of the House and the Senate unanimously,” said Coleman Hemphill, president of the Texas Hemp Industries Association, a recently formed chapter of the national Hemp Industries Association nonprofit. Ministry of Hemp is also a member of the HIA.
We heard that Prohibition Creamery had a CBD ice cream flavor, so we knew Ministry of Hemp had to go check it out!
Owner & founder, Laura Aidan, told us about how she discovered CBD and why she decided to make a CBD ice cream! We also got to try the flavor, “Afternoon Delight.”
Last week, Austin anarchists marked Juneteenth a day early with a protest against modern-day slavery.
Juneteenth, honored on June 19 each year, marks the day that news of the Emancipation Proclamation reached slaves in Texas. However, the 13th Amendment to the Constitution legalizes unpaid or shockingly underpaid slave labor by those behind bars. The Juneteenth prison protest in Austin targeted two offices operated by the Texas Department of Criminal Justice. Around dawn, activists scaled flag poles at the Austin offices of the TDCJ parole board to replace the U.S. and Texas flags with an anti-prison slavery banner. Later, more anarchists (and this reporter) gathered to protest at a showroom where corporations come to hire prison labor.
“ Texas is one of the few states where prisoners receive no paid compensation for their labor, yet are expected to afford commissary items, $100 medical copays, and post-release expenses,” a representative of the group told me.
The Texas hemp industry is booming despite the obstacles faced by Lone Star State entrepreneurs.
That’s the message of the Texas Hemp and Garden Show, which took place on March 13 and 14 in Austin, Texas, at a downtown nightclub near the heart of the popular SXSW festival and not far from the capitol building.
2018 marked the Hemp and Garden Show’s second year, and there were about a dozen different vendors or organizations represented when I dropped in on the second day. Activists helped passersby fill out voter registration cards on the sidewalk, a DJ spun tunes from a small stage outside, and inside a succession of experts spoke about topics ranging from agriculture to the war on drugs. At night, musicians took over for the speakers including a surprise appearance from rapper Lil’ Flip.