Meet Kelsey Cooper a Nubian Canna Queen from the Pacific Northwest. She's an economist daydreaming of a family cultivation and this weeks Rebel With a Cause.
Kelsey is a boss babe who is about to graduate from Boise State University with a Masters Degree in Economics and is looking to utilize her international experiences in business, government, and academia to advocate for the cannabis industry. Before her latest accomplishments, Kelsey grew up in Elko, Nevada, otherwise known as the "Last Cow Town in the West" and was born in Jerome, Idaho.
"With plenty of old time bars, casinos, brothels, rodeos and ranches around me, I took on an even stronger loving for the western way of life. Even in the heart of outlaw country, I felt more like a rebel than any of the others because I was a black girl with an understanding of the world much different than those around me in every respect".
We sat down with Kelsey to see what drives her passion for cannabis.
What makes you feel most authentically you?
I feel the most authentically me when I'm not wearing a bra and my afro is in it's full glory. I like my clothing to be bright with outspoken patterns and sparkles, makeup and face gems often complete my looks. CBD oil has worked wonders in helping me feel my most authentic self by minimizing the negative side effects of my anxiety and depression. Feeling authentically myself comes in many contexts varying from snuggling in my bed all day to waking up for a busy day and dressing like the next cover of Vogue.
What does being authentic mean to you?
Being authentic to me means not suppressing an aspect of myself for any reason other than my own will. Being authentic is providing transparency to yourself and those around you. In being our truest form of self, we are able to embrace our flaws and the flaws of others. Authenticity to me is a state of clarity and true connection to all that is you and the entirety of our universe. NAMASTE! Be true to you, forget the masks.
What are you proud to support?
I'm proud to support bipartisanship. I think that's a difficult thing to say right now, but I'm healing a little more everyday and I'm ready. I believe it is a critical component for regional development in our area- from the greater Pacific Northwest east into Colorado, this is truly a profound place. If we apply our shared values and work ethic to hemp, we can be an example to humanity. I'm eager to be a part of that! Hemp is going to be a major player in progressing solutions to the health and environmental challenges we face today.
What are you proud to rebel against?
I never wanted to be a rebel, I wanted to be accepted for my appearance, beliefs, and overall way of life. That being said, I took to the dictionary for rebel synonyms. The first listed was revolutionary, and I think I'd prefer to be called just that. My brother is in the Idaho State Correctional Institution as a product of numerous nonviolent cannabis charges, most notably a felony in relation to cannabis extract possession. I'm proud to rebel against existing systematic ideologies that have disproportionately impacted my family and me. These include drug policies rooted in ignorance that have imprisoned members of the cannabis community, especially in relation to people of color. I'm honored to be at the forefront of a societal shift in perception as it relates to cannabis, though I live in the shadows of prohibition as I'm based out of Boise, Idaho. That being said, I don't leave my apartment much because I'm risking my livelihood everyday as a woman of color in cannabis existing on the internet. I'm proud to be based in my families home state [Idaho] of generations, rebelling against ideals suppressing the endless potential of agricultural hemp and marijuana in my home state and beyond.
What is your favorite quirk about yourself?
My favorite quirk about myself definitely has to be my mental illness. I worked a long time on learning to love it rather than trying to ignore or tame it. It manifests itself into even the smallest endeavors and I can never escape it. I sum it up to me simply seeing the world in a different way. I'm over-empathetic and want to save everyone and everything and I can't seem to stop wanting to help more and depression sets in because I don't know how to slow my mind down. It's all really a beautiful experience in the midst, I've learned to love it and use it as my super power. I think that's why we are talking right now. I care about the cannabis community so much and I wan't to help save the planet all as a direct result of how my brain processes the real world.
Why is it important for women to support other women?
It's important for women to support other women because we are mother nature herself enduring a human experience, the most emotionally complex earthly form of life. We all have so much in common that isn't always talked about in society because it has been deemed "gross" or whatever else they say to shame us. We all experience the economic burden of feminine care and the taxes associated, uncompensated emotional labor, in addition to the many ideas and all else put forth by women that are exploited for patriarchal gain. I've always loved the saying "it takes a whole village to raise one child." In the workplace and beyond I think we need to stand by mothers and support their needs to maximize the potential of herself and her offspring. All women are the intuitive strength and love we need in the world today which is why it's so important that women support other women.
What does the Lady Jays lifestyle mean to you?
Lady Jay life to me is smoking from a joint pack that represents the embodiment of all remarkable women who came before us, all rolled up and ready for you to smoke when you're in doubt or just want to celebrate yourself. Lady Jays lifestyle is rural and urban while being relaxed yet so upbeat; it's a form of self care for everything in between. I see a new wave when I think of Lady Jays because each joint I smoke feels so much bigger than just me, it's a girl gang. All who live the Lady Jay lifestyle compose a divine feminine force representing how a modern boss woman lives her life: with a little help from great flower and girl power of course!