A portrait of a First Cannabis Church of Logic and Reason card next to a cup of coffee, part of the church’s pay-it-forward campaign to fight stigma against marijuana users.

Fight for Cannabis Church “almost like a battlefield”

Listen to this story as an audio feature. Rev. Jeremy Hall led services every month until things went up in smoke in September. New legislation brought confusion and concern to his parishioners, and continuing services could put everyone in legal trouble. Hall is the leader of the First Cannabis Church of Logic and Reason in Lansing, Mich. The church that views the drug spiritually but is viewed with uncertainty by city officials — that’s where Hall’s worries began.

Four local high school students Skype with Colin Kaepernick

Back in October, four high school football players at Lansing Catholic Central High School kneeled during the national anthem. The players say head football coach Jim Ahern benched Michael Lynn III, Matthew Abdullah, Kabbash Richards and Roje Williams for their actions. But these students never thought taking a stance would end with a Skype from one of their idols. “I just got off a Skype with Colin Kaepernick, any negative comments that are thrown at me, literally, it couldn’t affect me,” Lynn III said. The video chat was on Dec.

Assumptions vs. reality: Classroom budgets leave teachers to cover deficits

Instead of the harsh white light of the fluorescents, the light pouring from Alexa Weatherwax’s second grade classroom is the soft glow of old-fashioned incandescent string lights and paper lanterns she purchased for her classroom. This year, the only money Weatherwax spent out of pocket was on a travel Q-tip container for her students’ vocabulary words.

Weatherwax’s experience, however, is atypical and illustrates the starkness in realities between suburban and urban public schools, mostly White versus mostly Black school districts. According to the non-profit AdoptAClassroom.org’s national survey, 91 percent of teachers purchase school supplies for their students. The report goes on to say, on average, teachers in the United States spend $600 out of pocket each year on classroom supplies.

City Rescue Mission of Lansing provides more than shelter

Located on Cedar St. about two miles south of the capitol sits a rather unassuming brick building, however, on the inside, it is anything but. The City Rescue Mission of Lansing provides more than just food and a roof to sleep under, but hope to people in a difficult situation. Since 1911, City Rescue has a long and storied history serving the capital area as a nonprofit Christian ministry, operating solely on private donations. Laura Grimwood, the director of communications, has seen significant growth since she started working at City Rescue, particularly in the individual counseling and case management offered to guests of the shelter.

Drunkest City

The Lansing area is known for many things. It’s home to the largest university in Michigan and well as the State Capitol. 

However it recently became known for something else

Cardboard Prophets spread love across community

Cardboard Prophets, a street-based outreach initiative, organized a community park cleaning event at Reutter Park on Nov.6. Mike Karl, the founder of the group, said this was their first clean-up event. 

“The community complained the park was dirty, getting overrun with drug users, we want to leave the place the way we found it. Ruetter is the only park in Lansing with a lot of features though,” Karl said. 

The event is open to everyone, participants are supposed to bring the trash bags, gloves and love. “Being a volunteer as a member of the organization makes me feel the sense of existing, and I find the place where my love is going to,” said Beckie Burke, one of the members of Cardboard Prophets. Cardboard Prophets has been founded by Karl since 2010.

Lansing group holds trainings in support of immigrants

On Nov. 11, the Lansing Immigrant Defense group hosted a Rapid Response Training at the Foster Community Center to discuss actions to support immigrants and their families in the event of a deportation. The training discussed direct action tactics, risk and safety assessment and an overview of how rapid response fits into the larger picture of immigrant support in Lansing. In Lansing, the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has made no deportations. However, group members said they believe that ICE will begin to amp up their actions in the Lansing community over the next few months.