Sabrina Koramblyum, who helped organize the rally, offers this explanation: "A lot of people are really scared. If you come here and protest and sign our petition, people think they could lose their job or hurt their careers. They think the government will put them on some list as supporting marijuana."
But there's a bigger reason why Koramblyum was one of only five people to show up in front of the Broward County main library. Most pot rallies are a fairly tame collection of homemade signs, patchouli, and the regular cast of NORML characters that you see at every other pot rally.
So how can pot rallies draw more protesters? Here are a few ideas.
5. Take a Page From PETA
Nobody has done more to attract media attention to an extreme belief than the meat-haters at PETA, and they do it with one simple recipe: skin. They've had women shower together on public streets, strip naked and crawl into a cage, and generally just show as much skin as allowed by law. If NORML sent out a news release today for a rally where half-naked women were going to pass around a joint -- even if it was filled with tobacco -- the media would flock as if Bill Clinton were taking a second shot at inhaling.
4. Free Weed
Sure, you're thinking the cops would just show up and bust everyone, right? First, create a page on Facebook and friend only people you trust. Then schedule it for a place where you can easily dispose of the free merchandise, like, say, on Flagler Drive in West Palm Beach or on the Riverfront in Fort Lauderdale. If the cops come, the free pot goes in the water. If they don't, you've got yourself a successful, happy rally.
3. Faux Storefronts
Imagine walking into a store in, say, downtown Delray Beach and seeing a menu for what weed they're offering that night. The glass counter contains jars of sticky buds ready to be stuffed into one of the water bongs displayed nearby. Of course, the pot wouldn't be real, but visitors could imagine a day when dispensaries, like the ones in California and Colorado, are legal in Florida. Renting a shop for a day doesn't cost what it used to, and this little storefront rally just might inspire the imaginations of stoners everywhere.
They may be the scourge of Western society, but what the pot movement really needs is a bunch of suits advocating its cause. They'd bring politicians and business leaders who could speak at the rallies and help bring out the closeted pot smokers. They'd also bring money to the equation so that the rallies could feature vendors, music, venues, and, simply, legitimacy. Who pays the lobbyists? Future dispensaries and distributors stand to gain millions if Florida legalized medicinal pot, so hopefully those drug entrepreneurs will step up early and hire themselves a good advocate.
1. Unlimited Munchies
Bags and bags of family sized Funions. Vats of Doritos. Towers of Pringles. See you there, Cheech.
Click here to read this week's cover story in New Times calling for Florida to legalize pot.