Mona Zhang

Mona Zhang is the founder and editor of Word on the Tree. Her work has appeared in High Times, Vice, Freedom Leaf, Adweek, and more.

  • Cory Booker on why weed legalization is his signature issue

    The New Jersey senator on the 'massive injustice' of prohibition, a look at drug czar candidates, and more in today's newsletter.

    October 19, 2017
    By Mona Zhang

    Earlier this week, I wrote about a lawsuit against the cannabis consulting firm Electrum Partners. The complaint alleges that the company fired Pamela Johnston, formerly a senior vice president, for her breast cancer diagnosis. The piece quoted from a draft of a GoFundMe campaign her clients and colleagues in the travel industry were working on.

  • Sessions says he supports more federal research marijuana growers

    The AG says more competition would be healthy, DOJ lawyers say they erred in prosecuting state-legal medical marijuana growers, and more in today's newsletter.

    October 18, 2017
    By Mona Zhang

    Sessions says he is open to more federal research marijuana growers, but the DOJ has yet to allow applications to move forward. A broad coalition will push the Trump administration on criminal justice reforms. DOJ lawyers admitted they were wrong to prosecute a group of medical marijuana growers who followed state laws.

  • Trump drug czar pick Marino withdraws from consideration

    The anti-pot lawmaker faces controversy over damaging report, cannabis industry raises $1.8 billion this year, and more in today's newsletter.

    October 17, 2017
    By Mona Zhang

    Congressman Tom Marino withdrew from drug czar consideration after a damaging report on his role helping pharmaceutical companies. Research suggests recreational marijuana legalization could help address the opioid crisis. A former executive at the cannabis consulting firm Electrum Partners calls out her former colleagues for not supporting her fight against breast cancer.

  • Pot farms go up in smoke, but industry will probably be fine

    Congress cozies up to pharma companies, the latest from NorCal's wild fires, and more in today's newsletter.

    October 16, 2017
    By Mona Zhang

    Congress cozies up to the pharmaceutical industry amid evidence that cannabis could help the opioid crisis. Some pot farmers have lost everything to the California wild fires, but the industry at large will probably be just fine. Joe Arpaio’s infamous Tent City jail is being turned into a substance abuse treatment center.

  • Cannabis firm fires woman for having cancer, alleges lawsuit

    Employee was fired after breast cancer diagnosis, government workers are partaking in legal weed, and more in today's newsletter.

    October 13, 2017
    By Mona Zhang

    Friday | October 13, 2017. A cannabis consulting firm fired its SVP after she was diagnosed with breast cancer, says a new lawsuit. Many government employees are enjoying D.C.’s legal weed, according to a survey. At least 20 cannabis farms have been destroyed in the Northern California wild fires.

  • We must legalize cannabis, says former surgeon general

    Joycelyn Elders on pot policy, Earl Blumenauer testifies that MMJ could help the opioid crisis, and more in today's newsletter.

    October 12, 2017
    By Mona Zhang

    Rep. Earl Blumenauer educated his colleagues on the benefits of medical marijuana, former surgeon general Dr. Joycelyn Elders says decriminalization isn’t enough, and the federal landscape of pot policy is stranger than ever without administrators for the DEA and HHS. Also: A Phoenix man is suing the city, alleging that cops forced him to eat weed during a traffic stop.

  • Jeff Sessions has a ‘marijuana obsession’ says former AG

    Eric Holder talks pot policy, a 12-year-old medical marijuana patient speaks out, and more in today's newsletter.

    October 11, 2017
    By Mona Zhang

    A former attorney general talks about Jeff Sessions’ “obsession with marijuana,” how a 12-year-old girl is fighting to end prohibition, and the danger of bad marijuana headlines from cannabis publications. Also: Twitter users loved a weed dealer’s out-of-office message, praising him for his customer service. 🌳

    Jeff Sessions’

  • The only federal law protecting medical marijuana is under threat

    Wild fires in NorCal are bad news for cannabis farmers, Rohrabacher-Farr is on shaky ground, and more in today's newsletter.

    October 10, 2017
    By Mona Zhang

    NorCal fires threaten cannabis crops, three law enforcement officers were indicted for a school drug-sweep, and the DEA seized more than half a million dollars from passengers at one airport in Arizona. (Besides a small amount of marijuana, they didn’t find any drugs.) Also: The director general for the Philippines’

  • Random pee tests are unconstitutional, rules Washington court

    The VA keeps saying it can't help vets with MMJ, a state Supreme Court rules against urinalysis, and more in today's newsletter.

    October 6, 2017
    By Mona Zhang

    Blumenauer calls out the V.A. for its stance on medical marijuana, the Washington Supreme Court ruled urinalysis was unconstitutional in a case of marijuana-impaired driving, and 280E reforms could make it into the Republicans’ tax plan. Also: Americans think trying LSD once or twice is just as bad as consuming four to five alcoholic drinks per day.

  • Sessions quashed drug sentencing reform. Can Kushner save it?

    Senators seek criminal justice reforms, Canadian pot tax plan boosts marijuana stocks, and more in today's newsletter.

    October 5, 2017
    By Mona Zhang

    Criminal justice reformers look to Kushner’s influence in the White House, Colorado is not such a fan of DARE, and a settlement is reached between Gorilla Glue (the adhesives company) and GG Strains (the cannabis company). Also: how a Japanese man concocted his own ayahuasca recipe by “smoking all the random grass seeds [he] found on the street.”