Rolling protest: Pot advocates plan inauguration joint giveaway

Approximately 5000 joints have been rolled, and will be given away on Inauguration Day in D.C. (WTOP/Neal Augenstein
A bag containing 801 rolled joints sits ready for Inauguration Day. DCMJ, the group that worked to legalize marijuana in the District, is planning to pass out 5,000 joints Friday morning at Dupont Circle. (WTOP/Neal Augenstein) (WTOP/Neal Augenstein)
Nikolas Schiller, co-founder of DCMJ, rolls one of the marijuana cigarettes that will be given away near Dupont Circle on Inauguration Day. (WTOP/Neal Augenstein) (Approximately 5000 joints have been rolled, and will be given away on Inauguration Day in D.C. (WTOP/Neal Augenstein)
Starting at 8 a.m., on the northwest corner of Dupont Circle, the D.C. Cannabis Coalition will give away free joints to people over 21. (Approximately 5000 joints have been rolled, and will be given away on Inauguration Day in D.C. (WTOP/Neal Augenstein)
On Inauguration Day, starting at 8 a.m., on the northwest corner of Dupont Circle, the D.C. Cannabis Coalition will give away free joints to people over 21. In D.C., adults can legally possess up to 2 ounces of marijuana and can smoke it legally in private homes. Smoking marijuana in public is illegal, and marijuana is prohibited on federal property, like the National Mall. (WTOP/Neal Augenstein) (Approximately 5000 joints have been rolled, and will be given away on Inauguration Day in D.C. (WTOP/Neal Augenstein)
It is legal to possess up to 2 ounces of pot, for smoking in your own home in D.C., but illegal to smoke in public. (Approximately 5000 joints have been rolled, and will be given away on Inauguration Day in D.C. (WTOP/Neal Augenstein)
It is legal to possess up to 2 ounces of pot, for smoking in your own home in D.C., but illegal to smoke in public. (WTOP/Neal Augenstein) (Approximately 5000 joints have been rolled, and will be given away on Inauguration Day in D.C. (WTOP/Neal Augenstein)
Under D.C.'s Initiative 71 it is legal to possess under 2 ounces of marijuana, to grow it, and to give it away, but not to sell it. (WTOP/Neal Augenstein)
Under D.C.’s Initiative 71, it is legal to possess less than 2 ounces of marijuana, to grow it, and to give it away, but not to sell it. (WTOP/Neal Augenstein) (WTOP/Neal Augenstein)
FILE PHOTO —  "They are drug deals gone bad, basically," Montgomery County State's Attorney John McCarthy said during a press conference Tuesday, April 10, 2018. (WTOP/Neal Augenstein, File)
The D.C. Cannabis Coalition is urging federal legalization of marijuana. (WTOP/Neal Augenstein) (WTOP/Neal Augenstein)
Organizers say this is not a protest against President-Elect Donald Trump, who has said he favors states' abilities to legislate pot. (WTOP/Neal Augenstein)
Organizers say this is not a protest against President-Elect Donald Trump, who has said he favors states’ rights to legislate marijuana. They hope it will be legalized, federally. (WTOP/Neal Augenstein) (WTOP/Neal Augenstein)
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Approximately 5000 joints have been rolled, and will be given away on Inauguration Day in D.C. (WTOP/Neal Augenstein
Starting at 8 a.m., on the northwest corner of Dupont Circle, the D.C. Cannabis Coalition will give away free joints to people over 21. (Approximately 5000 joints have been rolled, and will be given away on Inauguration Day in D.C. (WTOP/Neal Augenstein)
It is legal to possess up to 2 ounces of pot, for smoking in your own home in D.C., but illegal to smoke in public. (Approximately 5000 joints have been rolled, and will be given away on Inauguration Day in D.C. (WTOP/Neal Augenstein)
Under D.C.'s Initiative 71 it is legal to possess under 2 ounces of marijuana, to grow it, and to give it away, but not to sell it. (WTOP/Neal Augenstein)
FILE PHOTO —  "They are drug deals gone bad, basically," Montgomery County State's Attorney John McCarthy said during a press conference Tuesday, April 10, 2018. (WTOP/Neal Augenstein, File)
Organizers say this is not a protest against President-Elect Donald Trump, who has said he favors states' abilities to legislate pot. (WTOP/Neal Augenstein)

WASHINGTON — The joints have been rolled, counted and bagged — all 5,000 of them. And local supporters of national marijuana legalization say come and get it.

DCMJ, the group that worked to legalize marijuana in the District, plans to give away the joints Friday morning for the inauguration.

“There’s hundreds of thousands of tourists coming to town, and they think D.C. is fully legal. But they can’t actually legally procure the cannabis,” said Nikolas Schiller, co-founder of DCMJ.

In the District, it is legal to possess 2 ounces or less of marijuana, and it’s legal to grow it. But it’s not legal to sell marijuana for recreational use.

Schiller said that’s where President Donald Trump could come in.

“We believe he can make America great again by allowing Americans to grow what George Washington once grew, which was cannabis,” he said.

Schiller’s group, and others in the D.C. Cannabis Coalition, are urging federal legalization of marijuana.

Friday morning, starting at 8 a.m., on the northwest corner of Dupont Circle, the group will hand out the joints.

“We’re checking IDs, because the law in the District of Columbia only allows adults, 21 or older, to possess cannabis,” said Schiller.

Some in Schiller’s group will be marching to Trump’s inaugural events, with the hopes that marijuana wafting over the festivities might catch the new president’s attention.

“Some people might choose to walk home and watch the inauguration on their television, some might choose to walk down to the National Mall, and light it up at 4 minutes and 20 seconds into President Trump’s speech,” said Schiller.

Smoking marijuana in public is illegal in D.C. And it’s also prohibited on federal property, including national parks and the National Mall.

However, Schiller and group co-founder Adam Eidinger believe smoking in public during the inauguration would be an appropriate act of civil disobedience.

“We’re telling people if they choose to consume cannabis in a public space, that they’re actually risking arrest,” said Schiller.

Schiller and Eidinger said the marijuana giveaway is not a protest against Donald Trump, who has supported states’ rights to choose how to legislate the drug.

“Unfortunately, the District of Columbia is not a state, so we don’t have any clarity over what’s going to happen in the next four years,” he said.

Copyright © 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.

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