The Ethics Surrounding The Brittney Griner Arrest

Brittney Griner’s arrest is yet another in the history of cannabis connoisseurs.  For Griner, taking the herb into Russia proved a terrible mistake. This is Vladimir Putin territory, and marijuana’s frowned upon. Furthermore, Griner was likely profiled.  This is a heartbreaking story in many ways, but this is the reality of the situation. Science has already proven the medicinal effects of cannabis; the research is out there. So no one knows exactly why she needed the vape pen. This article is going to examine the ethics surrounding her arrest. 

Cannabis Laws in Russia

Cannabis is illegal in Russia; there’s no way around it. It can’t be smoked; it can’t be consumed. Hell, it can’t even be in the system ninety days prior.

The law reads, “marijuana is illegal for recreational and medical purposes.”

And again, this is Putin territory. Do not give this man a reason.

And unfortunately, Griner did. She may not have done it purposely, but she put herself in a risky situation. 

That doesn’t mean that the arrest was just, but it does need to be acknowledged.  

According to The New York Times, “The country has a history of arresting and sentencing Americans on bogus or heightened charges.”

One example of this was an Israeli-American woman named Naama Issachar. Issachar was sentenced to more than seven years in prison after marijuana was found in her luggage at a Moscow airport in 2019. 

She wasn’t even visiting the country; she was traveling from India to Israel. 

Audrey Lorber is another example of this law. 

Lorber, a New York-based film student, was detained in St. Petersburg for bringing “medical marijuana” into the country. 

Luckily for her, she received minimal time.

Circling back to Griner, she obviously felt she needed this medicine. Hopefully, she’ll get the freedom she deserves soon. 


The apparent reason why she was playing in Russia in the first place is that she felt she needed more money.

Why else would she logically go to a country with a long history of disrespecting members of the LGBTQIA community? She’s currently married to her partner Cherelle Griner.

In the WNBA, her salary is a three-year deal worth $664,544 which averages out at $221,515 per year. 

In Russia, she makes around $1 million per year playing for UMMC Ekaterinburg. That’s four times her salary back home.

And while some may argue she didn’t have to play overseas. Most people would probably make the same move. 

Respect the Plant

Marijuana’s God’s greatest gift to man. And everyone should be able to smoke freely, regardless of where they’re at. (Of legal age)

To deny the medicinal power of cannabis is to deny science. It’s just like global warming. 

But even to this day, society looks down on stoners. It’s commonplace to think of cannabis as childish, something that needs to be hidden. 

But for a lot of people, it’s everything. 

And it should be it. It heals. 

There’s a reason why Willie Nelson still plays music, why Snoop Dogg looks the same, and why Woody Harrelson’s the best damn actor of all time. 

Because this plant is good. 

And it hurts the universal soul that people are still getting arrested for medicine.

Griner probably used this plant because it helped her be the best version of herself, and now that’s taken from her. 

Avatar photo
About Nick Bartlett 177 Articles
My name is Nick Bartlett, and I am a Senior Writer at as well as a Senior Writer here at OregonSportsNews. My work has been featured in the Seattle PI, OregonLive, and various other publications. I've also served as a guest on Sirius XM radio as a "Pac-12 Football Insider" For business inquiries, you can reach me at - Email: Phone Number: 425-366-9711