June 29th, 2021 at 09:56 pm
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Tribal cannabis. Two of the most scary words, apparently, for the federal government. Pueblo cannabis. Two words no one in N.M. wants to really get down and talk about. Is it because this may hold the largest Indigenous power play, economically speaking, since Indian gaming for tribes locally and nationally?
New Mexico’s pueblos have been on the fence about discussing this issue publicly. The Pueblo of Acoma in 2017 announced an agreement with Bright Green Group. What was, at the time, scheduled to be the largest operation of its kind in the west fell apart due to many regulatory hurdles, both state and federal.
Those last words above—regulatory hurdles, state and federal—are the biggest opponents tribes across America face if they want to exercise their sovereignty. To be able to make a decision that affects a community’s health, wealth and safety should not be under the scrutiny of the federal government. As Picuris Governor Craig Quanchello stated in an interview with The Paper., “That’s what we said: We’re exercising our sovereignty. We went through our community and said, OK, this is what’s going on. This is what we want to do. How does the community feel about cannabis from the medical side? Because in the beginning [it was], and it still is, the