The Core Team has not voted to consider this an official statement and it should thus be considered an opinion from one of our bloggers.
There’s been a lot of turmoil in the cannabis community recently. Clear, the Cannabis Law Reform Party, has been rocked by resignations, suspensions and persistent accusations that Peter Reynolds has homophobic, racist, sexist, and reactionary beliefs. At the moment there is a stand-off between Peter Reynolds and two remaining stalwarts, and four former members of the Clear Executive who regard themselves as unlawfully expelled and have taken control of the party website to declare that Peter Reynolds has been sacked. This is paralysing the wider cannabis community as much as it is Clear, as they watch riveted as some of the most inventive and bizarre slurs are flung about with abandon.
We won’t pretend that we at Re:Vision haven’t watched with dismay as one of our own trustees has been insulted and traduced. We haven’t issued our own statement stating an intention to cease working with Clear because we never started in the first place and we didn’t think it would help to weigh in. But we do have something to say about the current situation.
Whether you believe that Peter Reynolds has expressed discriminatory views or not, it is clear that a very, very large number of people believe that he does. This has distracted the entire cause for some time as people have, quite rightly, objected repeatedly to these statements. When objections were first raised, a proper investigation should have been conducted and and its results made known. The majority of the people who were involved in this decision not to do this has now left and have expressed regret, but even now, there are still people who are arguing that concerns over whether Peter Reynolds has been discriminatory or not are unimportant to the role that he holds. But these are very important issues towards the people who they are affected by: black people, LGBT people, women, and disabled people. Especially disabled and unwell people, who are present in our movement in such disproportionate numbers.
In the cannabis community, and the drug law reform community, we all know there’s a significant number of people who use the drugs that we’re campaigning to have controlled and regulated, some are medicinal users, some recreational. It’s not that surprising. Some are public about it, some aren’t. All rely on the rest of us not calling up the cops to let them know what they’ve got and where they’ve got it. I’ve always thought it something of a no-brainer that if I don’t consider something a crime, then I don’t report it. For someone to break that code, for someone to threaten people who use cannabis for severe and chronic illness with police action, and then to claim they represent three million cannabis users, is not being consistent, politically or morally.
We don’t know what is going to become of this situation as Mr. Reynolds’ response to a poll showing over three hundred people calling for his resignation was to announce to the entire Clear Facebook base that he would be taking Chris Bovey to court in order to acquire control of the Clear domain name. This is hardly professional. We would thus implore every remaining supporter of Peter Reynolds and his claim to the leadership of Clear that they focus on how this looks to the wider public, thousands of whom are now reading articles and watching videos about this, and to consider proper review of Mr. Reynolds’ actions and how they reflect on the party.
It is important that as the good work of millions of drug law reform activists all over the world began to bear fruit, we all support the effort of each other and Re:Vision looks forward to working with other like-minded drug policy organisations in the future.
Peter, fall on your sword… why?
Because it is the right thing to do.
Under the circumstances, it is for the greater good.
This man needs some urgent medical attention, he is like a small child who has finally managed to get the lid off of the cookie jar and is refusing to let go despite the fact that he has eaten all the cookies and the jar is now empty, 300 people want you gone Peter Reynolds, i think that is abundantly clear for anyone to see from the poll , its not about persecution Peter its about the fact that YOU ARE NO LONGER WELCOME because of your actions , all you are doing is bringing the movement into disrepute and causing more damage whilst alienating people, please think about the people who are genuinely interested in this cause and not viewing it a potential cash cow like yourself, your done, finished, over, an ex parrot !!!
Personally, I’ve seen some of the utterly vile abuse that Mr Reynolds has flung around, posted on his own personal blog, which is fairly strong evidence in iself. However, regardless of the reasons why an apparent overwhelming majority of the cannabis community in the UK want Mr Reynold out of the post he has been removed from, what I cannot understand is why Mr Reynolds seems to want to stay in a role where no-one wants him to be? Surely that’s just signing yourself up for a miserable time? It’s clear that the situation has reached an impasse, and that no progress will be made while Mr Reynolds is at the helm. On this basis, if Mr Reynolds wishes to see the movement succeed, he should step aside. If he persists in pretending that he hasn’t been ejected, and continues to harrass the rest of the executive, then it demonstrates that his own personal position is of greater importance to him than the cause.
A link to this was removed from the CLEAR Facebook page, presumably as part of their “ruthless” new approach to dealing with opinions and questions. Lalala, we’re not listening!
Well, whether he is guilty of homophobic / racist views or not, the fact is it has become obvious that he thinks he is Clear. If he cared so much for this organisation he would put it to the vote, that he isn’t say’s a lot.
Peter Reynolds has been sacked so he is now effectively a “squatter”
What a complete shambles CLEAR has become, well done Reynolds!