The LA Times is reporting that Richard Lee, founder of Oaksterdam University, will give up ownership of his Oakland-based business after federal agents seized his assets, bank accounts, and computers.
In an interview with the Times, Lee acknowledged that he was worried that he could face major federal drug charges. “I’ve been doing this for a long time. Over 20 years…. I kind of feel like I’ve done my time…it’s time for others to take over.”
What Lee tried to do was to end cannabis prohibition. The profits he earned through his medical marijuana business were used in trying to pass Proposition 19 in California, which narrowly failed in 2010.
Note: Marijuana legalization is on the ballot in Colorado this coming November.
Lee is right to be worried about federal charges. Penalties for marijuana cultivation under federal law are draconian.
Lee is also right to pass the responsibility to end marijuana prohibition to others – if they are interested.
A planned rally scheduled in support of Oaksterdam and Lee called for Tuesday fizzled out, as only a few hundred people showed, mostly curious onlookers.
Lee can also see that the millions of U.S. marijuana users are indifferent to his plight, and to the thousands of others currently incarcerated on marijuana charges. It seems people are happy to see Lee and others fighting, but too scared or lazy to join in.
Categories: Oaksterdam University