No More Bong for Cheech and Chong?
The pro-marijuana crowd took a hit, so to speak, Monday night when counterculture icons Cheech and Chong announced on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” that they’d no longer be doing “stoner comedy.” It may be that the widespread acceptance of weed took the edge off that sort of comedy. Or maybe being able to buy it without having to pretend to be friends with the person selling to you took the appeal away for Cheech.
“So you’re not excited about legalization?” host Stephen Colbert asked. Cheech said, “No way! It’s boring. The last time I bought weed it was from a store in a strip mall.” When Colbert asked where he used to buy it, Cheech replied, “Behind a store in a strip mall.”
Now before this goes and harshes anyone’s mellow, rest assured this was just a bit playing up the fact that the kind of humor isn’t as rebellious as it used to be, especially now that former Republican Speaker of the House John Boehner has gotten involved in the weed game.
Rapper released from prison
Meek Mill has been released from prison, according to Billboard.
In November, the 30-year-old rapper was sentenced to two-to-four years in prison after Judge Genece Brinkley determined he was in violation of his probation. Mill’s attorneys said the sentence was unjust and accused the judge of showing “enormous bias” against the rapper. They alleged Judge Brinkley of making inappropriate demands in private, including requesting that Mill give her a shout-out in a song and requesting that he leave his management at Roc Nation in favor of Philadelphia music figure Charlie Mack, of which she was an associate. The FBI subsequently launched a probe into the allegations.
Beyond the alleged misconduct of the judge, Mill’s sentencing was seen as emblematic of the country’s broken criminal-justice system. In an op-ed published in The New York Times, rapper Jay-Z argued that Mill’s case was “just one example of how our criminal-justice system entraps and harasses hundreds of thousands of black people every day.” Specifically, Jay-Z took issue with probation, or as he called it, “a land mine, with a random misstep bringing consequences greater than the crime. A person on probation can end up in jail over a technical violation like missing a curfew.”
In Mill’s case, his probation stemmed from an 11-year-old case. The charges that led to his “violation” were minor in nature -- he was arrested for popping a wheelie on a motorcycle on the set of a music video -- and were later thrown out. What’s more, both the prosecutor and the parole officer recommended no additional jail time for Mill. Judge Brinkley disagreed, however, unilaterally deciding that Mill’s actions warranted a minimum of two years in prison. Even after the allegations of misconduct surfaced, the judge refused to recuse herself from the case and denied Mill’s repeated requests for bail, saying he was “a danger to the community.”
On Tuesday the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania overturned Brinkley’s decision, citing questions regarding the credibility of the officer who original arrested Mill in 2007, according to TMZ. The court also noted that prosecutors were not opposed to Mill’s release.
One of the people calling for his release is New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft, who recently visited Mill in prison and afterward called for criminal-justice reform.