Marijuana Decriminalization Supporters Issue ‘PSA,’ Challenge Nutter to Sign Kenney’s Pot Bill


By Kenneth Lipp

In a retort to less than supportive responses from city administration and public safety officials, local advocates supporting Councilman Jim Kenney’s multiple attempts to change the Philadelphia Police policy of mandatory arrest for possession of small (less than 30 grams) of marijuana, in favor of a civil penalty, have issued what they call a Public Service Announcement on the issue.  The latest iteration of Kenney’s bill, which passed the City Council with a super-majority in June, is scheduled for Mayor Michael’s Nutter’s desk in September (if Nutter refuses to sign, the bill’s majority support indicate a likelihood his veto would be overridden), and the mayor has promised a statement on the bill will be made September 10th.

Not sure where Scrapple found these clips of the Mayor in a hat but we're very grateful they did.

Not sure where Scrapple found these clips of the Mayor in a hat for this PSA, but we’re very grateful they did.


The video, produced at Scrapple Networks (a NoLibs film and television outfit that specializes in being awesome and bizarrely sexy), is not kind to Mayor Nutter, and Nutter has made himself no friend of drug law reformers.  In a cavalier dismissal of the civil rights and racial disparity issues associated with marijuana arrests cited by the American Civil Liberties Union and other organizations, as well as the City Council in its 14-2 passage of the bill, the Mayor has minimized the importance of decriminalization and called the Council’s bill “simplistic.”

Poe, the speaker in the video who has worked with several organizations but tells me this video is a personal project undertaken by “a concerned citizen,” highlights these issues, before calling for a march at 1 PM September 6th, from the Liberty Bell to City Hall.

It would be nice to end up on the right side of history. Watch the video, it’s funny.

About Kenneth Lipp

Kenneth is a writer and researcher. He’s from Alabama, and will not apologize for it. He moved to Pennsylvania in 2012, but has been in love with Philadelphia since a late-night stroll down Ben Franklin Parkway to the Art Museum in July of 2011 with the love of his life. He is interested in telling Philadelphia’s dynamic and absolutely unique stories with the zeal of a constantly enamored newcomer. Kenneth is also passionate about government transparency and protection of whistleblowers, most notably PFC Chelsea Manning. His research and reporting on law enforcement and surveillance have been featured in various publications, including Rolling Stone (Meet the Private Companies Helping Cops Spy on Protesters) and Popular Science (Boston Tested Crowd-Watching Software That Catalogues People's Skin Color). His training is in both genetics and history and he likes the joke about being a helicase and unzipping your “genes.” He’s driven to know, and thinks you can handle, the truth. Follow him on Twitter @kennethlipp.

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