Famed Republican political operative Roger Stone is apologizing for calling several prominent black Americans “negro” after marijuana activists threatened to boycott a marijuana convention at which Stone is scheduled to speak.
An apology from Stone, who is notorious for not backing down, is quite the rare sight. The Trump confidant will be the keynote speaker at an upcoming expo promoting legal marijuana business, and activists have threatened to boycott the event.
“This group of dissidents uses recycled ‘research’ from Media Matters for America packaging it as a ‘boycott campaign’ for my scheduled speech,” Stone said in a written response exclusively obtained Tuesday by The Daily Caller.
The attacks on Stone relying on the liberal Media Matters are laid out in a recent High Times article and include crude remarks, like Megyn Kelly “has a nice set of cans” and Rachel Maddow is a “muff-diver.” Stone also previously tweeted in regard to television host Roland Martin, news reporter Dominic Carter, and former Republican congressman Allen West, calling them “negro.”
“There is no doubt that some of my tweets are too pungent and politically incorrect for my critics. I did use a word used by the US Census until 2011 that some construed to be a racial epithet in tweets regarding Allen West, Dominic Carter, and Roland Martin,” Stone wrote. “In retrospect, I see that this attempt at sarcasm can be seen as a slur therefore I heartfully apologize to all this gentleman.”
“I don’t expect this apology to appease my critics because, like the President, nothing I say can please them. Like Trump I don’t apologize as a general principle. I am violating one of my own Rules. In this case it’s the right thing to do. I am hopeful some of these gentlemen will accept my apology as it is sincere,” Stone continued.
It seems Stone was correct in his prediction, as Martin told TheDC that he did not accept Stone’s apology. “Apologizing to a reporter in an email is not apology. It was directed at me. He needs to apologize to me,” Martin told TheDC.
Stone still plans to speak at the expo and the organizer is behind him. The longtime Republican operative has been involved in the drug law reform effort for decades. Stone is working to convince President Trump to respect the states’ rights of marijuana legalization, something that Trump agreed with in the campaign. He said in a November rally, “I really believe we should leave it up to the states.”
Stone wrote in his response that if Attorney General Jeff Sessions and White House chief of staff John Kelly “have their way” then “access to cannabis for purposes of medical use by millions of American will end.” Sessions has been an outspoken opponent of marijuana and has asked Congress for authority to prosecute weed suppliers in states with medical marijuana.
“Only the President can stop this catastrophe. The President has told me he is a strong supporter of medicinal marijuana. He has launched a just war on opioids which he has correctly said is the real drug abuse crisis today,” Stone said.
Stone is part of a bipartisan effort to push President Trump to take marijuana off the schedule 1 drug list. He has teamed up from Democratic Florida mega-donor John Morgan, who defended Stone in the face of the boycott.
“It’s a mistake. Roger has the president’s ear. Politics is not pretty. Sometimes politics makes strange bedfellows. This is such a time,” Morgan told Politico.
Here is the full response:
Recently I launched a bipartisan effort to persuade President Donald Trump to honor his pledge made during the presidential campaign to respect the states’ rights to legalize marijuana for medicinal purposes.
Partnering with me in this important endeavor is Orlando trial attorney and major Clinton donor and fundraiser John Morgan, Fox News analyst Andrew Napolitano, Congressman Matt Gaetz and HBO’s Bill Maher among others. I have written spoken, marched and rallied against for drug law reform for 20 years. As a libertarian, I am not a newcomer to this fight. I am also a witness in a new lawsuit filed against the Federal government to overturn the feds classification as a Schedule 1 drug.
I spoke to the Cannabis Business Expo in New York City in June and the bipartisan approach I outlined including an effort to take Cannabis off the Schedule 1 drug classification so doctors can prescribe it to people who might benefit was well received. I am scheduled to speak before the LA- based Cannabis Business Expo on Sept 14.
Recent a small group of activists said they would boycott the Expo if I spoke and vowed to disrupt my speech if my remarks are not canceled. It’s a free country. They are free not to attend. I have no intention of canceling my remarks which I am giving pro-bono while other major speakers are paid. I feel strongly about this cause.
This group of dissidents uses recycled” research” from Media Matters for America packaging it as a “boycott campaign” for my scheduled speech. The trolls and bots pushing this bullshit sure look like Brock, Carusone and they’re diminutive minions.
My twitter feed is lively and not for the faint of heart. I comment on many matters.
This bogus claim I am a racist, anti-Semite or misogynist is based on old tweets that are either taken out of context, twisted or in some cases simply fabricated. I most certainly never referred to myself as a ‘N*gga with a Nixon Tattoo. It’s a Fugazi.
To be clear I have been speaking out for drug law reform for over 30 years. I spoke along with the Reverend Al Sharpton and Russell Simmons and Drug Reform Activist Randy Credico at a “Countdown to Justice Rally” against New York’s racist, draconian Rockefeller drug laws in 2003. I spoke out again against these racist laws which destroy families and lives at the Yippie Museum in Greenwhich Village in 2008. These are hardly the acts of a racist.
I am proud of my libertarian streak and have consistently supported human rights actively opposing an Anti-Gay Marriage Constitutional Amendment that was on the ballot in Florida. I also supported both campaigns to legalize medicinal marijuana by constitutional amendment in Florida.
Although I have been an acolyte and intimate of President Richard Nixon I have been sharply critical of his failed War on Drugs. It was Nixon who, as Vice President was praised by Dr. Martin Luther King for rounding up enough Republican votes in the US Senate to offset the many southern white Democrats who opposed the 1958 Civil Rights Act. President Richard Nixon desegregated the public schools without violence or bloodshed. When LBJ left office, 10 percent of Southern schools were desegregated. When Nixon left, the figure was 80 percent.
Nixon also raised the Department of Justice Civil Rights Enforcement Budget 800 percent, doubled the budget for black colleges, appointed more blacks to federal posts and high positions than any president until that time, including LBJ. Nixon invented “Black Capitalism” (the Office of Minority Business Enterprise), raised U.S. purchases from black businesses from $9 million to $153 million, increased small business, loans to minorities 1,000 percent, and increased U.S. deposits in minority-owned banks 4,000 percent.
Nixon gave us Affirmative Action by adopting the Philadelphia Plan mandating for quotas for the number of blacks in unions, and in college and university admissions. This desegregated the trade unions. Yes, I’m a Nixon Republican.
There is no doubt that some of my tweets are too pungent and politically incorrect for my critics. I did use a word used by the US Census until 2011 that some construed to be a racial epithet in tweets regarding Allen West, Dominic Carter, and Roland Martin. In retrospect, I see that this attempt at sarcasm can be seen as a slur therefore I heartfully apologize to all this gentleman. I don’t expect this apology to appease my critics because, like the President, nothing I say can please them. Like Trump I don’t apologize as a general principle. I am violating one of my own Rules. In this case it’s the right thing to do. I am hopeful some of these gentlemen will accept my apology as it is sincere.
I am many things but I am not a racist.
There is no doubt that I sometimes use flamboyant, descriptive and politically incorrect language that some people find offensive. It’s 2017 and I suggest these people read the first amendment of the U.S. Constitution which guarantees free-speech even if it is sometimes vulgar. Note- what Media Matters is advocating is censorship, the silencing of those they disagree with. It is both un-American and more egregious than anything I have ever said or written in a 40-year career in American Politics.
I do not apologize for criticizing CNN talking head Ana Navarro based on her entire lack of credentials to opine and her false description as a “Republican strategist”. This is a woman who got caught lying about being an attorney during the Jeb Bush Administration (New York Times)) Everything I have ever tweeted about her is accurate is not in any way a reflection of my views on all women.
New York’s Times columnist Gail Collins ripped off a riff about Mitt Romney strapping his dog to the roof of his car and driving to Boston, making it a running gag in her column. I wrote it first in a series of columns at STONEZONE.com. Odious. Dislike of Ms. Collins does not imply criticism of the entire gender of women.
Jill Abrams formally of the Wall Street Journal wrote a roundup story on the best-selling books at the time of the 50th anniversary of John F. Kennedy’s assassination. Despite the fact that my first book “The Man Who Killed Kennedy – The Case Against LBJ” was a New York Times Bestseller, selling more copies than any book of this genre other than Bill O’Reilly’s “Killing Kennedy” (FOX was a selling machine) and out-pacing experienced authors like David Talbot and Abrams neglected to include the book in her review and was cavalier about my complaint to her for fundamental fairness. Thus, I saw her firing at the Wall Street Journal as a reflection of her bad karma. I don’t withdraw my criticism of her. It does not mean that I hate all women.
The access to cannabis for purposes of medical use by millions of American will end if Jeff Sessions and White House Chief of Staff General John Kelly, aided by the new FBI Director have their way and reignite the “war on drugs” with a federal crackdown on state legalized marijuana, reversing a directive of Attorney General Eric Holder under which the feds have wisely stood down. Only the President can stop this catastrophe. The President has told me he is a strong supporter of medicinal marijuana. He has launched a just war on opioids which he has correctly said is the real drug abuse crisis today. We must not only assure that the Trump Administration respects the State’s Rights to legalize and set up a system to regulate, tax and sell cannabis, we must also convince the President to take Cannabis off the Schedule 1 drug list. I am confident both can be done and will not be hindered in my efforts to make this happen. This is no time for petty partisan politics or the small minded.
You don’t need to agree with me or my politics nor do I need to agree with yours to work together in this vital effort. Our effort includes Republican and Democrats, liberals and conservatives, libertarians and progressives. We agree on only one thing- Cannabis .Those who do not chose to join us can step aside.
My critics are simply playing politics and harming the cause of a united bipartisan effort to protect state legalized marijuana in the 29 states where the people have elected to make it legal. They are more interested in scoring petty political points than securing permanent drug law reform. I will not be deterred from my efforts to persuade the President of the folly of launching a new “War on Drugs” considering the expensive and unjust failure of the last one and to keep his promise to protect the access to cannabis by millions of Americans including many veterans who are using it for medicinal purposes.