Reggae music has been connected to Rastafarians and Ganja from the early days when Reggae Sunsplash was held in Montego Bay. Clyde McKenzie who is the organizer of the next Reggae Sumfest symposium wants to start conversations that will align reggae music with cannabis use.
Uruguay and Canada and other places around the world have embraced the Ganja plant as a medicine and it is being used for recreational purposes. However, Jamaica is still moving slowly towards allowing Jamaicans to use the plant as medicine and in businesses.
There are persons who speak about the connection between the Jamaican music, the crime and the weed as well, as they try to change the conversation about the herb and see it as a medicine.
On July 12 the symposium was held at the Mona Visitor’s Lodge, a panel discussed the music and the herb. Since the herb is now seen as a big game changer as it could be used to create more jobs and contribute to the growth of the economy.
It was mentioned that Ganja is the sacramental plant for Rastafarians and the herb is recommended by the artistes in the music that was done by Rastafarians over the years.
Rastafarianism is connected to our cultural music and it would be good if this synergy could continue and the laws could be changed to cause less harassment for the Rastafarians as the Music festival continues to attract huge crowds and visitors that are coming to the island from all over the world.
There are some legal Cannabis businesses that are slowly growing since the recent changes have been made to some laws. Ragga (Rastafari Grassroots and Ganja Cluster) is supported by Mr. Bogdanovich. This group represents many Rastafarians on the island. Ragga will be at Reggae Sumfest this year, they are licensed. There are other licensed businesses that are connected to Ganja that will be at the festival this year as well.
The conversation continues as persons try to understand more about making money from the herb in a legal way.
On July 14, 2019 the great music festival kicks off and ends on July 20.