Why was marijuana outlawed to begin with?

"This marijuana causes white women to seek sexual relations with Negroes, entertainers and any others." — Harry Anslinger, the first commissioner of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics (an early predecessor of the DEA).

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  1. Thanks for this. It seems we are finally making progress in some areas, but the federal laws and treaty obligations regarding hemp are going to be a minefield for years to come. The filling of our "prisons for profit" with small time pot users is a tragedy that will have negative effects until we reverse our course and start using reason in the passage of our laws.

  2. Ratel says:

    Trust me, whatever the current rationale, that's still the reason.

  3. dacree says:

    Maybe I'm just a cynic but I thought the 'war on drugs' had only profit taking as a goal. Sure, there has been government and private propaganda that played in to racial fears, social stigma, and religious moralities but who paid for that propaganda?

    Keeping competitive natural drugs off the market benefits a few groups as does making sure your nylon, paper, and oil interests are kept secure via prohibition of the competition.
    These days, there are billions of dollars to be made in keeping private prisons full and DEA agents well paid. Prohibition is an industry, and a profitable one to boot.

    Ever wonder why pot is illegal in California? Some might say its because the illegal side of the market has too much to loose to allow it to be sold in a free market.

    Just ask yourself who benefits from the system and you will see why it is illegal.

  4. it's a french word. US executed all the french words.

  5. According to the 1985 book on the history of cannabis, The Emperor Wears No Clothes, it was the cotton fiber industry that started the campaign to stop hemp fiber production after the invention of the hemp mill (pre-WWII). After a short legalization in WWII to help in the war effort, the cotton and the new poly fiber industry piled on to outlaw the plant. Sure the book is a pot-head's history with some/several inaccuracies, but make sense in context with propaganda like Refer Madness, and hyperbole like your quote from Harry. I just hope this trend toward legalization will also lead to a rise in hemp-based fiber products. I would imagine that hemp paper would be cheaper and have less impacts on our lands than wood pulp. We shall see...

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