A lifetime of moments gathered by threads of time reveals the fabric of our being. We all carry certain truths, burdens, and sorrows. We constantly try to prove to ourselves and to others why we do what we do: a reason, an explanation, a justification for wanting to fit into society normally as cannabis users and fans.

We have a huge desire to comfortably fit into a society that had been bred by baby boomers, religious fearmongers, political fascists, racists, sexists, and old-school prohibitionists. But we require equal opportunities to practice what we believe. We deserve to be respected as hard-working, tax-paying citizens, and respected as humans who choose to use cannabis the way we want. As long as no one is harming anyone, including themselves, anyone should be able to do what they want, wholeheartedly.

As a society, we need to exercise these beliefs to ensure our lives remain stitched together. Most humans are grounded four ways: mind, body, spirit, and environment; however, staying grounded wholly can be a challenge when one or two threads in everyday life are loose.

Laws against cannabis are loose threads imposed and enforced upon society. More people go to prison in the U.S. than any other place in the world, and too many of them are imprisoned for pot. In America, the U.S. federal laws have made it so that certain religious beliefs are also illegal. For instance, using cannabis as a sacred healing herb is not recognized federally; cannabis is not recognized as medicine.

And again, life doesn’t come with a manual, nor does it come with instructions, so is that why we have laws? Maybe. Strangely, when we attach laws to something that naturally grows from the earth, we really have to question what the real crime being committed is. So, we do what we do as cannabis warriors and freedom fighters to push against those ludicrous laws hoping to make positive changes without ruining our lives or those of our family members.

Our parents and guardians have a major role in our upbringing, and impart wisdom that lends us information, so as we become older we can hopefully become decent members of society. An upbringing of good, loving, respectful values can nourish that. I have always admired Craig X Rubin — the well-known pastor/actor/media guru out of California — and I believe it was his upbringing that shaped him into who he is today.

Craig’s upbringing can be best described as fun-loving, happy, structured, and somewhat adventurous. His family is Jewish but didn’t go to church, temple, or synagogue regularly. To sketch a mental picture, his grandmother was described as not your “typical Jewish grandmother.” Sure she loved to cook and bake but she had a wild side, smoked cannabis, and ran an illegal card game out of her penthouse in Beverly Hills. His parents did an amazing job of loving him and providing material security, but Craig’s father did not like pot and once said that as far as he was concerned, smoking marijuana was as bad as shooting heroin.

Craig defied cannabis prohibition in his home and in his overall life. Cannabis helped to strengthen his love for God and the Bible, as well as his belief in freedom of speech.

I initially recognized Craig from his appearances as himself in seasons one and two of Weeds, and again later on in Adam Scorgie’s independent documentary The Union: The Business Behind Getting High. Craig and I became friends on Facebook in 2011, after he accepted my friend request. Recently, I created some dialogue with Craig on Facebook Messenger after I discovered that he had been subjected to cannabis laws in California back in 1990: Craig was wrongfully arrested for pot and has been arrested on more than one occasion. In fact, the last time he was arrested he suspects he was set up by the CIA — although no one knows for certain and it wasn’t given over in discovery — an informant who was a long-time “friend,” and by a local law firm that fraudulently pretended to help him, but just used him for information and money.

I look forward to sharing our interview this Friday, April 8th, where we explore his work, values, challenges, defiance, and his cannabis freedom fighting.