Bernie Sanders rallies swept through New Jersey the past few weeks, despite the Vermont candidate being in California. The first rallies for a U.S. President that began in January 2016 continued into May and June here in NJ. In New Jersey, the first Bernie rally was held in Asbury Park on March 5, and the second one was in Red Bank on April 2. The Hoboken rally on May 15 was the third protest in NJ for Sanders. A Sanders rally was held in Montclair on May 21, and another in Jersey City on May 28.
I traveled to Asbury Park on May 31 for the free “FEEL the BERN Concert & Rally.” Located at “The Smith,” the free concert was fantastic, as musicians played political and modern songs, including original soundtracks made just for Bernie Sanders. One of the singers played a protest song that he wrote against the Iraq War more than a decade ago. The Bus for Progress sat outside the bar all night, gathering the attention of any bystanders, and was distracting enough to deter bystanders from focusing on the troll-ish Hillary signs pasted all over an impoverished part of town. Bernie signs were held on the corner, or by people getting some air or taking a smoke break.
I smoked a bowl freely without any problems, and I collected over 20 signatures that night for the Legalize Marijuana Party. Bernie supporters are typically supportive of legalization, since it goes along with Bernie’s planks of decriminalizing and descheduling cannabis, decarcerating the nonviolent offenders currently in jail, preventing future arrests of young people with a joint in their pocket, using taxes to pay for education and domestic social services, and working toward providing better healthcare for those who need it.
Jim Keady, a Bernie-crat running for the Democratic Party in the 3rd Congressional District, shared my view of legalization here in the Garden State. Unfortunately NJWeedman challenged Keady in April over his signatures required to get on the ballot. NJWeedman sought revenge against the Democrats who bumped him from the 2014 3rd Congressional District in 2014, after reducing his 208 signatures to only 97, three short of the required 100. Weedman must have mistook Keady for a typical Democrat, and went ahead and challenged Keady’s signatures, despite Weedman being a Bernie supporter himself.
On June 5, I returned to Asbury Park to join the “Ride the Bus in Asbury PRIDE Parade for Bernie & Friends.”