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Weed world - Brief History

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I am 35 years old. I have an M. Sc. in Physics, but I ended up teaching English to Elementary school kids, which I find way more fulfilling than splitting atoms for fun. I am a single mom and a quite responsible person. And I use weed. 

It's kinda sad to me not being able to share this fact with everyone, given all these years of anti-marijuana propaganda they've shoved down our throats. Thanks a lot, William Randolph Hearst! Luckily, we have blogs.

Humankind has known the cannabis plant for more than 8 thousand years, harvesting it mainly as a food source. 6 thousand years ago, it became widely popular because its two main uses: textile and psychotropic. 

The hemp plant presents a strong yet workable fiber, having three times the tensile strenght of cotton, and being way cheaper and environmentally friendly than the latter. It requires less amount of water to grow and chemicals to process, and it allows to be blended with other fibers, as silk or cotton, giving way to a broad number of textile uses.

As for the psychotropic use... well, it started as an ancient chinese medication 5 thousand years ago. It didn't take long to weed to become one of the 5 sacred plants of India, and be offered to gods, put into sacred oils and entombed with of kings and important people. After that, we can split the psychotropic use of cannabis in three categories: religious, medicinal, and recreational. Greece, Rome, Middle East. All of them appreciated (and consigned in their historical records) the goodness of the inhalation of the combustion of the leaves and flowers of the cannabis plant, or the ingestion of preparations made out from it. It has been kept in golden boxes, burned in erotic norse rituals, and considered by many spiritual leaders as a fundamental help in meditation and peace between nations.

And granny uses it. Oh, yes. She knows that weed is quite a good analgesic, and her knees do know that, too. From nausea to cancer, cannabis extracts have been used to fight a lot of human diseases, with very good results, from the dawn of civilization. But I'll focus on this part on another blog.

Then it came Marco Polo changing the world with commerce. And, of course, cannabis was a part of that, too. Both as a textile and a psychotropic, cannabis was fair trade back then. There were import/export businesses, tax policies, and health offices, all treating cannabis as a serious product, no harm done (besides the eventual hostile takeover or pirate bust).

And how did we end up hating it? Let's just say that that scumbag of William Randolph Hearst, founder of modern press and yellow journalism, was seeing his business seriously threatened by the textile use of hemp, given that hemp paper was cheaper and better than his own product. And, that's what money's for, he pushed his friends in the Congress to put a ban on it, with the allegation that the consumption of cannabis products caused violent behavior and was used by poor black people (jazz musicians, mostly). Funny, isn't it? The law was approved in 1937 and since then the great advertising machine has been convincing people that weed is the devil.

And I took too much of your time. Leave your comments and remember: I wrote this high as a kite. How good is that?

Balberto Uploaded 05/23/2010
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