Published: Thursday, 15 October 2015 14:45
Written by Jodi James
Thursday, October 15, 2015
The Florida Harvest Tour is on day five. We began our journey on Saturday, October 10, 2015 at the Broward Pride Festival. It was a fun day, nearly 200 petitions signed and we thoroughly enjoyed our hosts Kathy and Candice, the owners of Florida SweetGrass.
In the days since Pride in Broward, we have explored the many faces of Florida. No wonder statewide candidates have such a hard time winning in Florida. In Broward, we saw bare-butted men in chaps, while in Levy County, it is real men in cowboy hats. A vastly different view on life, but interestingly enough, they all love their freedom.
The PAC name, Floridians for Freedom feels right as we talk to the men and women on the streets. Our friend Candice coined the term “We grow Freedom.” I really like it. As we moved from Pride in Broward through Miami Dade, into the everglades and now north through farm country, it is clear when we end cannabis prohibition we are growing the freedom that comes with health and prosperity.
Not everyone we’ve met agrees with us on the surface. This is a life changing tour though, so changing lives is what we do. I started chatting with Vicky and Jim at the Polk County Courthouse. I’d noticed the couple sitting on the bench across the street from the courthouse. I was on the steps of the courthouse until deputies showed me the administrative order forcing me to collect signatures from Vicky and Jim’s side of the street.
Vicky and Jim were there as part of their faith ministry. They were representing the local Jehovah’s Witness congregation there at the Courthouse distributing Bibles. We spoke on and off for some time about the courthouse and the people we meet in our ministries. Soon a man stood by waiting patiently to talk to someone. It was me. The man had a long scar on his thigh and another crossing the knee, his left arm was missing. He saw on the internet we were there and he’d come to sign the petition. Our man was in a car accident in his youth. We spoke about the tension in his neck from doing everything one-handed. My friend has no hands – you can see the video he helped Florida CAN create here – so I’d heard similar things from him. The man explained he can’t shake hands anymore, the pain in his hands is just too much; we did a great fist bump. He understood this wasn’t a medical amendment, but he knows it is time to fight to reclaim his right to cannabis. After he told his story and I sent him to the RV to pick up packets and a complimentary t-shirt, I told Vicky and Jim how sad those stories make me and how hard it was to keep hearing it. If you believe in a creator who put all things on this earth, you have to wonder, who was Jehovah’s witness that day.
Tonight we are bedding down in our borrowed family RV to get a good night sleep before rounding the bend into the panhandle. And the band plays on ….