The History Of Marijuana The history of marijuana is quite interesting. Marijuana has gone from being an important crop of the early settlers, to being outlawed in many countries, including the United States. To better understand marijuana, I will trace it back to its origins, and explain how marijuana was used in the beginning. I will then take a closer look at the history of marijuana in the United States and how this plant has evolved over the years. An interesting fact that one should ponder is that ?in 1762 Virginia imposed penalties on those who did not produce it [marijuana]? (Sloman 21). This is quite a contrast to how marijuana is treated today. If one is caught growing, selling, or even using marijuana, there is consequences
Under the Marijuana Tax Act of 1937, there was no chemical distinction made between the two substances. Because of this, hemp eventually became illegal when marijuana did. (Williams 4). While industrial hemp has been used for centuries to make rope, clothing, and other materials, it has never been used for smoking due to its lack of THC. Cannabis was used first in about 8000 BC for cloth and textiles, and by 2700 BC it was incorporated into most cultures for fabric, cordage, food and medicine. From 1000 BC to 1883 AD hemp was considered the world largest agricultural crop (Schreiber 159). Hemp didn't just have its roots in other cultures either; it has been used in America for a very long time. The first recorded hemp plot in North America was planted in 1606 by a French botanist named Louis Hebert (Jenkins 1). From the early 1600's to 1859 hempseed oil was the most used lamp oil in the world. In early America, most colonies enacted "must grow" laws that made it illegal for farmers not to grow hemp. The first U.S. flag was sewn with hemp fabric in 1777 (Schreiber 161). Famous people such as Thomas Jefferson, and George Washington were avid hemp farmers. George Washington was once quoted saying, "Make the most of the Indian hemp seed and sow it everywhere." Back then, hemp was recognized as a versatile crop, yet today, with other countries allowing the production of hemp, the U.S. still considers this
Marijuana is no longer used just to achieve euphoria or by hippies to show rebellion against the United States authorities. In today’s world you do not need a lava lamp and a van down by the river, you can now receive marijuana from doctors. The medicinal use of marijuana is
because of the Mexican Revolution. These immigrants brought along a new culture and customs one of them being the use of Marijuana as a medicine and relaxant. Marijuana which had been known as “cannabis” by Americans was not illegal in the U.S. and was in fact commonly used for industrial and medical purposes. Citizens in the Western states were uneasy of the newcomers and with rising tensions in those states it was not a difficult task for the media to take advantage of the citizen’s unease and pit them against the newcomers and their customs. Harry Anslinger, who is considered the father of the war on weed was a prominent figure of prohibition during the time, used the media to demonize marijuana by using racist tactics. He made several racist claims such as, “There are 100,000 total marijuana smokers in the U.S. and most are Negroes, Hispanics, Filipinos and entertainers. Their Satanic music, jazz and swing result from marijuana use. This marijuana causes white women to seek sexual relations with Negroes, entertainers and any others”(huffpost.com). In succeeding in painting the Mexican immigrants in a bad light, the media also managed to arouse people’s fear towards the unknown effects of Marijuana The outlawing of marijuana would provide authorities with an opportunity to control Mexican immigrants.( Although the prohibition of marijuana was founded on racism one has to wonder if things are really the same today. Facts have continuously managed to show that
Marijuana has a deep history in America, being in the Americas since 1545 when the Spanish brought it over with them. Later, it was again brought over with the English colonists to Jamestown. Here it was used as a large cash crop similar to tobacco and was used as a major source of fiber. Later in the 1890s, a similar plant, hemp, became another large cash crop in the southern half of the US even replacing cotton. Around this time marijuana was also used in medications, although it was not on the scale of cocaine and opium, being used to treat everything from labor pains to rheumatism, “any disorder of the extremities or back, characterized by pain and stiffness” (The Definition of Rheumatism). Further on, in the 1920s marijuana became increasingly more popular with jazz musicians and even special cafes/clubs opening for its use. It was not until the 1930s when a campaign conducted by the Federal Bureau of Narcotics whom labeled marijuana as the harmful “gateway drug” it is seen as today. Though
While marijuana was not actually outlawed until the Marijuana Tax Act of 1937 it was a part of the country and society since before the arrival of its current transplanted inhabitants. Hemp is the name of a species of Cannabis that has been used throughout history for many things including rope, clothing, medicine, oils and other such novelties. Marijuana and hemp are both of the species Cannabis Sativa and occur naturally along with a score of other variations of the plant. Marijuana is simply a form of hemp that is higher in delta-9- tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), marijuana’s naturally occurring psychoactive chemical. Today we hear many nicknames for marijuana including: weed, pot, budda, grass, and bud to name a few. Marijuana has long been used by the indigenous peoples of North and South America for many things, from medical to religious purposes. Of course a select few Europeans exploited narcotics and different types of marijuana. However, in Europe it was not a widespread phenomenon, and neither was it from the time of colonization or even industrialization in America. It was not until the era of the 19th amendment to the U.S. constitution, known as prohibition, that marijuana became a widely used substance in the U.S..
Recreational Use of Marijuana in Texas Over the past few years, a portion Texans have joined in with other citizens across the United States to push for the legalization of Marijuana. Since Texas is considered a neighbor of Mexico, legalization of cannabis has its pros and cons. One beneficial outcome would
Madison Summers Medical Marijuana According to a survey by pubmed.gov, “92 percent said that medical marijuana alleviated symptoms of their serious medical conditions, including chronic pain, arthritis, migraine, and cancer.” 86 percent of the United States believe that Cannabis has valid medical uses, says statista.com. Definitions.com states that, “medical marijuana refers
When cannabis was first introduced its primary use was not for smoking or even medical it was for creating other things like clay pots and a fiber for making rope. Its first human consumption recorded back in 2737 B.C. by the Chinese emperor as a treatment for gout, malaria, beriberi, rheumatism, and poor memory. This drug didn’t enter the United States until the mid-1800s but by that time it was used as an intoxicant and a medicine. Marijuana entered the states by Mexican immigrants in the 19th and 20th century but was not popular. Marijuana was limited to the lower society pretty much minority smoked the drug. After its extended period of continuous use the government began to crack down and created different acts and legislation in 1937 such as the Marihuana act which puts a
In the 1900s, weed had already had relatively long legal history in the United States. Many historians believe the Jamestown settlers were the first to introduce cannabis to the United States in 1611. Presidents George Washington and Thomas Jefferson, both grew hemp in the 1700s, which was distributed to drug stores to help cure migraines and menstrual cramps. In the beginning weed was used for recreational purposes, and still is used to aid aliments, some aliments worse than others.
In modern society marijuana has always been considered a sort of taboo subject in the United States due mainly to the fact that it is illegal. Many people don’t realize however that considering the history of our country, marijuana has only been illegal for a relatively short time span. Several of our founding fathers, including George Washington and Thomas Jefferson, grew marijuana for hemp (the material derived from the plant) regularly and there is even speculation Washington smoked the plant occasionally. Back in those days marijuana did not have the sinister reputation it has today but instead was a vital part of colonial life, with the hemp material having a number of uses including rope, clothing, and paper (West, 1998). It wasn’t until the early 20th century that the public opinion regarding marijuana began to shift and restrictive laws were put in place that would eventually lead to illegalization.
The first marijuana laws weren’t directed at blacks and Mexicans by statute, but they were sponsored by law enforcement and an extension of Jim Crow tactics. Historians Richard J. Bonnie and Charles H. Whitebread, authors of The Marijuana Conviction: A History of Marijuana Prohibition in the United States, documented a pervasive racial bias that motivated the formation of these laws. Only a few press clippings were necessary to drum up enough fear to pass those early marijuana laws. “All Mexicans are crazy, and this (marijuana) makes them crazy,” was a quote from the floor of the Texas Senate which passed the first state marijuana law in 1914. From 1915 to 1937, 27 states passed laws against marijuana.
In more recent history, the late 1900's were filled with important decisions by politicians regarding marijuana. During the Kennedy administration in the 1960's, Vietnam was a major issue, and the public, especially college students, turned to marijuana as a form of dissent. As this happened, enforcement lessened; courts dismissed marijuana charges or imposed only "modest fines." (Gerber) In 1960, there were only 169 marijuana related convictions in the entire United States. During this time, marijuana was seen more as an escape and protest. Time Magazine saw marijuana use as an attention worthy means of protest. (Time) Crime rates did not rise, and no major health problems had appeared to be caused by the drug. The 1962 White House Conference on Drug Abuse concluded that there was only "weak" evidence indicating that marijuana leads to using harder drugs. (Eldridge) At that point in time, it almost seems as if we were the closest we've ever been as a nation to decriminalizing the drug.
Marijuana was first outlawed in the United States in the 1930s by the Marijuana Tax act of 1934. At the time smoking was done primarily by black men and those in urban or poor communities as well as jazz Musicians. The expansion of users started in the 1960’s with the age of the baby boomers and the vietnam war along
After watching the documentary on how marijuana became illegal I've learned about the prohibition of alcohol and how alcohol was a major thing in America. Once alcohol was banned people started trying drugs such as marijuana as a scapegoat. Though the alcohol ban was later overturned drugs still played a major part in America.