Newsweek Crowns Oakland America's Pot Capital

Magazine focuses on pot activism as opposed to what is really happening in the Bay Area

Friday, Oct 16, 2009  |  Updated 1:45 PM PDT
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Newsweek Crowns Oakland America's Pot Capital

SonomaPicMan on Flickr

Oaksterdamn University is right in front of the 19th St. BART station.

Oakland is the best at something and it has nothing to do with violence.

Newsweek is calling the often maligned East Bay city the American Mecca for pot smokers, for its nine-block area lovingly referred to as "Oaksterdam."

How did Oakland become the poster child for the pro pot movement in this country? Simple: city voters passed a first of its kind measure giving Oakland the ability to enact a special cannabis tax on its city sanctioned medical marijuana dispensaries.

The national magazine took notice and sent a reporter and a videographer to town to document the madness of Oaksterdam University teaching "Pot Politics 101," a city politician espousing the benefits of pot, and the district's alleged proximity to Oakland's financial district.

The problem is outside of the few blocks that make up Oaksterdam and a couple of night clubs, there isn't a lot of business going on in downtown Oakland. And for the few people actually living in the apartments that recently failed to gentrify the neighborhood, a little mellowing out is probably not a bad thing.

Newsweek focuses more on the activism surrounding attempts to legalize marijuana than actually examining what is happening in Oakland and what that could mean for the future of marijuana in America.

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