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Burning Rainbow Farm: How a Stoner Utopia Went up in Smoke
     

Burning Rainbow Farm: How a Stoner Utopia Went up in Smoke

5.0 1
by Dean Kuipers
 

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The gripping story of two marijuana advocates gunned down by the FBI after a five-day standoff.

On a mission to build a peaceful, pot-friendly Shangri-La, Tom Crosslin and his lover Rollie Rohm founded Rainbow Farm, a well-appointed campground and concert venue tucked away in rural Southwest Michigan. The farm quickly became the center of marijuana and

Overview

The gripping story of two marijuana advocates gunned down by the FBI after a five-day standoff.

On a mission to build a peaceful, pot-friendly Shangri-La, Tom Crosslin and his lover Rollie Rohm founded Rainbow Farm, a well-appointed campground and concert venue tucked away in rural Southwest Michigan. The farm quickly became the center of marijuana and environmental activism in Michigan, drawing thousands of blue-collar libertarians and hippie liberals, evangelicals and militiamen to its annual hemp festivals. People came from all over the country to support Tom and Rollie's libertarian brand of patriotism: They loved America but didn't like the War on Drugs.

As Rainbow Farm launched a popular statewide ballot initiative to change marijuana laws, local authorities, who had scarcely tolerated Rainbow Farm in the past, began an all-out campaign to shut the place down. Finally, in May 2001, Tom and Rollie were arrested for growing marijuana. Rollie's 11-year-old son, who grew up on Rainbow Farm, was placed in foster care – Tom would never see him again. Faced with mandatory jail terms and the loss of the farm, Tom and Rollie never showed up for their August court date. Instead, the state's two best-known pot advocates burned Rainbow Farm to the ground in protest. County officials called the FBI, and within five days Tom and Rollie were dead. Obscured by the attacks of September 11, their stories will be told here for the first time.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“We need more books written like this one. That seems to be the only way we are really going to find out the real truth on what is going on.” —Carol Long, Carol's Paperback Plus, Waterford, MI
Publishers Weekly

The New York Times bestselling author of Guardian’s Mate returns to the world of the Shifters and a tale of a new love under fire...

A man is only as strong…

Red wolf Shifter Dimitri has fought his whole life for respect. It is claimed that red wolves are tainted with coyote blood and therefore not pure. He may not be skilled at verbally defending himself, but because he's a bodyguard, tracker, and champion of the fight clubs, his fists are always ready for some rough and tumble. However, he’d prefer a roll in the hay with the woman who is his oldest friend.

…as the woman who’s got his back…

A spirited leopard Shifter and a fellow tracker, Jaycee Bordeaux has no problem forging a mate bond with Dimitri, but soon the two are called to infiltrate a rogue group bent on enslaving Shifters. Jaycee may have defended Dimitri from taunts before, but they now face a more lethal danger—one that threatens not only the future of their people, but also their love.

Kirkus Reviews
The story behind the FBI raid on a Michigan farm that could have become the next Waco or Ruby Ridge-except that 9/11 intervened. On September 9, 2001, Los Angeles-based journalist Kuipers read a newspaper article about the killing of two men by FBI sharpshooters at a southwestern Michigan campground, following a standoff that ran over the Labor Day weekend. Two days later, when people confronting the FBI were suddenly perceived less like defenders of their constitutional rights and more like terrorists, the story was dropped flat by most news media. Kuipers, however, had grown up near tiny Vandalia, Mich., and knew that smoking pot in the state was a misdemeanor, enforcement rare. "The shootings . . . smelled funny the moment I read about them," he writes; he decided to follow up. For years, he relates, owner Tom Crosslin had groomed Rainbow Farm as a campground, meeting place and concert venue specifically for users and proponents of the legalization of cannabis. "Festivals," usually dubbed something like Roach Roast or Hash Bash, were regular events; name artists performed for enthusiastic, presumably stoned audiences. The author goes to some lengths and generally succeeds in showing how the outlying conservative rural community, while hardly in favor of legal pot or post-hippie lifestyles, could tolerate Crosslin, his much-younger male lover Rollie Rohm and their crowd on the simple basis that what they did was their own business in a free country. But the county prosecutor's office had other ideas. When Crosslin and Rohm were caught with a few cannabis plants growing in the basement, they were threatened with outright forfeiture of their property and possible prison time. Defaultingon their court date, the two armed themselves and prepared to burn Rainbow Farm to the ground. Was it spontaneous escalation, or did the War on Drugs go so far as to incorporate murder?An excellent look at the marijuana subculture, deluded or not, aspiring to the Middle-American mainstream.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781596911420
Publisher:
Bloomsbury USA
Publication date:
06/13/2006
Pages:
304
Product dimensions:
6.36(w) x 9.57(h) x 1.37(d)

Meet the Author

Dean Kuipers is the deputy editor of Los Angeles City Beat and the author of I Am a Bullet and Ray Gun out of Control. His work has appeared in Rolling Stone, the Los Angeles Times, and Playboy. A native of Michigan (twenty miles from Rainbow Farm), he now lives in Los Angeles.

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Burning Rainbow Farm: How a Stoner Utopia Went up in Smoke 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
It's so interesting to see something you lived through perceived in print. Burning Rainbow Farm took a piece of my personal cultural history and splayed it open for me in stark narrative. With medically precise cross-examination, Dean Kuipers portrayed the steeling and the rusting of a man and his property in Southwest Michigan before their destruction. This book exposes the new drug police pattern for ultimate control. Take provoking actions against property and family, back the guy into a corner, drive him to pick up a gun, then walk a police officer into harm's way in order to create the perceived threat that justifies the required execution. Total surrender or death. Just the new rules of engagement. But there were beautiful shining moments and Dean made breathtaking use of key quotations out of hours and days of photos, audio and video. The beautiful ideals and morals of mass gatherers were exposed and preserved. The true ugliness of the multi-jurisdictional hit squad lay there described in political context and fullness of implication. Tom's life story flowed like a screenplay in lurid organized chapters. Although Tom skirted the line from commercialism into activism, in the bitterest end he chose to become a human demonstration. One against the disregard our state and federal laws have for the property, privacy and dignity of the modern American citizen. Thus this book also documents the only defense left against injustice. Leave nothing to forfeit, including a life that would otherwise be permanently defiled by a filthy Civil War on drugs. All this before 9/11 laws, if you think this police state was bad, wait till you get a load of the national security state! God forgive America! Jay Statzer Director of Cures Not Wars of Michigan