This is for the readers of the Big Island Chronicle blogs, etc.
Aloha. I want to make a few points to help clear-up some false statements and rumors that have been posted here and elsewhere by people who never came to the THC Ministry. As the old saying goes, ‘everyone has a right to their own opinion, but not to their own facts’.
I was super-sensitive to all levels of law enforcement as I built the THC Ministry from September 2000 through July 2010. I hoped to protect myself and anyone that joined me or worked for me by making sure we complied with all local, state and federal laws, that we were good neighbors, we had good manners and we helped our community’s sick and poor.
The THC Ministry was to be the Golden Rule in action with Cannabis as our sacrament. It worked well for thousands of people for many very happy years, until it didn’t. We look forward to proving our case in court. Hopefully the Judge will allow us “to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth”, to present ALL of our evidence and ALL of our witnesses, and that we’ll get a “fair trial”. Does “no fair bail” = “no fair trial”?
Please know that my spiritual practice includes two basic exercises. The first is to squarely face my challenges with full mana and good manners, and to bless the challenge while looking for the blessing(s) hidden within. Like this:
God, that’s GREAT! Please show us the blessings in THIS situation … and hurry! We are safe, we are loved and all is well.
Second, I like the process of ‘cleaning my karma’ with confession, forgiveness, gratitude and love; the basics of spirituality.
I’m sorry for any negative thought, word or deed I’ve had or done that has hurt you. Please forgive me. Thank you. I love you.
Here’s a partial list of how I attempted to build our “defense to prosecution”, and to protect myself and each THC Ministry member.
Share and I offered to plead ‘guilty’ after being arrested in exchange for releasing the other defendants. That offer was rejected by our prosecutor.
The only raid on the THC Ministry was the one in March of 2010, followed by the arrests in July of 2010.
The search warrant in March 2010 said very clearly that we were ‘a legitimate Ministry with legitimate Ministry members’ and to take it easy on the people and our Sanctuary offices and property. Thankfully, they did take it easy on Share and me and on our Ministry offices and home. All the agents and officers were respectful and professional with us throughout the ordeal. I made a YouTube video interview the next day describing the experience.
Of course I re-opened the Ministry soon after the raid! Our Rights come from God. God gave each of us jurisdiction over all the seed-bearing green plants on Earth in Genesis 1:29. Cannabis is a plant with seeds, it’s NOT a drug. “You can make and drug from a plant, but you can’t make a plant from a drug”. The Drug Enforcement Agency, D.E.A., has ZERO jurisdiction over plants.
There was obviously no “compelling government interest” to arrest me in the March raid, even after two solid years of intense undercover investigation, because they DIDN’T arrest me. I obviously presented NO “danger to my community” that warranted my arrest, and the search warrant said in writing that we ‘were legitimate’. Yes, I was over-confident when I re-opened the Ministry. I thought my sincerity and legitimacy were obvious after ten years of very public operations. At the same time I asked the Department of Justice in writing by CERTIFIED MAIL for all of our possessions and our sacrament to be returned to each one of us asap.
Bail conditions: I agreed to obey ANY bail conditions the court would mandate as I have succeeded to obey the law and stay free of trouble for 63 years with a clean criminal record.
Soon after the news of my unique license to legally marry people with Cannabis as the sacrament hit the Associated Press and went around the country in late 2000 my former girlfriend and I hosted the first wedding at our Sanctuary Bed and Breakfast in Pahoa. The happy couple had heard me on a talk radio show in Phoenix and flew-in to be my first legal Cannabis wedding. TIME Magazine sent a reporter and photographer who paid us well for the access, but they never published the story.
Five Hawaii County Police Department Vice Officers made an official visit to the THC Ministry back in 2004 or 2005. They told me in a face-to-face meeting very clearly that they knew I had a special license from the State of Hawaii and that I was “allowed to distribute marijuana”. “Just keep it private.” OK!
Share and I met face-to-face in 2009 with our Community Police Officer William Derr at the Hilo H.P.D. substation. He told us that “there are no complaints about the THC Ministry” and that “we’re all good”. We exchanged phone numbers and cards and occasionally checked-in to maintain open and honest communications.
I went to a private “meet and greet” for law enforcement personnel with our brand new U.S. Attorney Ed Kubo when he was first appointed by GW Bush in 2001. I had read about it in the newspaper and decided to go. The meeting was in a private dining room at Oodles of Noodles Restaurant in Kona. I purposely arrived one hour early and set-up a full table of THC Ministry information, brochures, cards and products to demonstrate EXACTLY what I was up-to. I even had a large wood bowl of Cannabis hemp seeds with a plummeria flower in it for all to see.
My table set-up was just inside the front door of the private dining room and it had to be passed-by in order to enter the event. I was the only ‘civilian’ at the meeting until my friend Jerry Rothstein (R.I.P.) arrived to support me and see what’s going-on. The room was filled with about forty F.B.I. and D.E.A. Agents, Prosecutors, etc. Trust me, they couldn’t miss me, or my information table. Full respect, all good.
At the end of the event Ed Kubo took time to ‘meet and greet’ each person there. I was last in line. I made a custom THC Ministry I.D. card earlier that day with a fresh-picked Cannabis leaf laminated on the back which I gave to Ed as we shook hands and introduced ourselves. I made myself very clear to him and he made himself very clear to me. Ed Kubo, the new top federal Prosecutor for Hawai’i told me to my face that he ‘was fine with me and the THC Ministry’. He said ‘he wasn’t interested in marijuana; that he was tasked with ‘meth’ crimes and we could probably agree on the danger that it caused’.
In 2001 I attended the first annual “Meth Summit Meeting” held at the Waikaloan Hotel hosted by Mayor Harry Kim and Billy Kenoi. It was a full-day, catered event for 300 invited local, state and national law enforcement officers and agents, Judges and political V.I.P.’s., plus some community non-profit groups. After a short hassle with Billy Kenoi over my First Amendment Rights I set-up a full table of our THC Ministry information and products, my bowl of Cannabis hempseeds with plummeria flower, etc. right at the entry to the ballroom. It was there throughout the day’s meetings and breaks with people coming and going by me from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m.
I introduced myself and shook hands with Asa Hutchison, Administrator of the D.E.A. at that time. I gave him my THC Ministry I.D. card. He confirmed to me that he had read the N.I.D.A.-funded study which concluded that ‘marijuana eradication’ CAUSED the ‘meth’ epidemic and poverty in Hawai’i. Then he almost ran away from me! :-O
I met and talked briefly with Sen. Dan Inouye at the event. I gave him a THC Ministry information package with my I.D. card, Sanctuary sign and some Cannabis sacrament ‘plant tags’.
I placed my business card and a Cannabis sacrament plant-tag at virtually every place setting in the ballroom for all 300 attendees when the room was empty for the lunch break. Harry Kim made some kind remarks about me to the entire audience towards the end of the meeting. Billy Kenoi gave me a ‘thumbs-up’ sign when Harry spoke about me.
In 2004 I sued John Ashcroft, Attorney General of the United States, Karen Tandy, Administrator of the D.E.A., and Ed Kubo, the U.S. Attorney for Hawai’i for declaratory relief and a permanent injunction. I TOLD the U.S. government in writing that ‘I was operating a therapeutic Cannabis Ministry that required large amounts of Cannabis to make holy anointing oil and tinctures, etc’. The Bible recipe for one full batch of holy anointing oil requires 6 pounds of Cannabis flowers, for example. I dismissed the case before any court hearings were scheduled over a dispute with my attorney. Looking back I wish I had finished the case.
Soon after I filed my federal civil lawsuit in March 2004 I called Hilo’s D.E.A. Agent Jesse Forney at his office in the Hilo Police Department. He confirmed that he knew who I was and that he knew about the THC Ministry. He told me that “we’re all good”.
After filing my civil lawsuit in March of 2004 I attended another “Meth Summit Meeting” hosted by Mayor Harry Kim and Billy Kenoi in Waikaloa. (I think I attended three of them. Eventually they invited me to attend.) As usual I set-up a full table of THC Ministry information, brochures, cards and products including my large wooden bowl of Cannabis hempseeds with a plummeria flower in it for all to see. My table was again at the entrance to the ballroom where the approximately 300 law enforcement officers, agents, Judges and political V.I.P.’s were coming and going all day. I met Ed Kubo for the second time briefly in the hallway during a break in the speeches. We again shook hands in a friendly manner and he confirmed to me, face-to-face, that “we’re still all good”.
In the spring of 2004 I was called as a witness in the case of US v. Barnes in his court hearing for a religious defense to federal prosecution charges. Michael Barnes and I were acquaintances and he was a non-active member of the THC Ministry. I had no idea that Michael owned a huge marijuana greenhouse and grew thousands of plants there with his ohana.
When it was time for me to testify I was warned STRONGLY by Judge Susan Oki Mollway that I should not testify and that I needed another lawyer. She called and got me a Federal Public Defender in about five minutes. I was again STRONGLY advised to take the 5th Amendment by this new lawyer. Judge Mollway asked everyone to leave the courtroom for a few minutes and had a “sealed hearing” with me. She told me on-the-record (transcript available) that she ‘knew all about the THC Ministry’. She said something to the effect that it was personally dangerous for me to testify in this case. She recommended that I ‘go back to Hilo and to continue educating people with my THC Ministry activities’.
The THC Ministry has been featured in HIGH TIMES, HEADS Magazine, SKUNK Magazine, West Coast Leaf, the New York Times, Der Spiegel in Germany, Haareetz newspaper in Israel, the Dutch HIGH TIMES, The Spectator Magazine in Japan, and many more.
According to Cannabis Culture Magazine the THC Ministry pioneered the return of the holy anointing oil of Moses and the Christening oil of Jesus … in the Moses Building oceanfront in Hilo. It heals severe gangrene.
Our recommended donation for Ministry services and Cannabis sacraments worked very well for a long time for most of our members. Those who could afford to donate for a wedding, a funeral, counseling, or sacraments did so in order that those who couldn’t afford to donate could have services and sacraments, too. I remember only saying “no” to people who I felt were abusing our fair system of free “aloha bags”, other sacraments, other services, etc. Maybe we should have just asked for 10% of the annual income from each our members; a ‘tithe’, or a tenth, like many churches and Jewish temples do?
Any reasonable person (juror) would find us innocent (“not guilty”) after hearing all of our evidence and all of our witnesses.
See OPERATION MOCKINGBIRD for the C.I.A.’s PROVEN program of having 3,000 U.S. journalists on financial retainer.
See OPERATION PAPERCLIP for the C.I.A.’s PROVEN program to import Nazi scientists to the USA.
See Project MK:ULTRA for the C.I.A.’s PROVEN program to hypnotize U.S. citizens with mind control and drugs.
See Project MK:NAOMI for the U.S. government’s “ethno-specific, biological agents”; weapons of mass destruction, including weaponized cancer and the A.I.D.S. virus.
See OPERATION NORTHWOODS for the C.I.A.’s plan to blow-up a U.S. airliner to make it look like Cubans did it.
See “US Patents for ‘mind control”. :-O
Who’s a “danger”?
All the best to everyone,