History[ edit ] Early drug prohibition[ edit ] Drug prohibition in Canada began with the Opium Act of which was introduced based on a report by then-Deputy Minister of Labour, Mackenzie King. Following the Asiatic Exclusion League riot ofKing went to Vancouver to investigate causes of the riots and claims for compensation. Some of the claims came from opium manufacturers seeking compensation for damage done to their production facilities by the mob that attacked Chinatown and Japantown.
Tweet Washington became one of the first two states, along with Colorado, to legalize adult recreational use of marijuana when voters approved Initiative on November 6, The vote was the culmination of a long campaign to end legal penalties for possession and use of the plant and its byproducts, a campaign that since the s had won reduced criminal penalties, permitted medical use, and finally legalization under state law -- marijuana remained illegal, in Washington and elsewhere, under federal law.
This essay traces the history of marijuana, a substance that had been used by humans for thousands of years until being demonized and outlawed across much of the world during the twentieth century, and of the movement to end the criminalization of marijuana use in Washington.
Nature's Pharmacy Nature produces a wide range of medicinal and psychoactive compounds, and humans have used many of them for thousands of years, for healing, for religious purposes, and for recreation. During the millennia when only magic could explain most natural phenomena, plant-derived drugs such as opium and cannabis were believed in many cultures to enhance insight into the mysteries of existence.
In some societies their use was sacred, confined to healers and holies who would then interpret the experience for the faithful. In other societies, psychoactive drugs were used by ordinary citizens, to heal, to approach the divine, or for simple enjoyment. It is an indisputable fact that throughout recorded history a not-insignificant percentage of the human race has used chemical compounds to alter, at least temporarily, how they experience reality.
With the exceptions of alcohol, caffeine, and nicotine, marijuana is probably the most widely used psychoactive substance known to humans, and the only one of the four that has been illegal in America since the repeal of alcohol prohibition in Unlike most plants and fungi that contain psychoactive chemicals, the hemp plant the dried leaves and flowers of which are marijuana has many practical uses.
Since as long ago as B. The first unambiguous written mention of hemp being used for medicinal purposes appears in the Rh-Ya, a fifteenth century B. The Atharva Veda, a compilation of Hindu hymns and scripture that first was reduced to writing ca. Favorable mentions of hemp under a variety of names but never "marijuana"appear in the early records of many societies, particularly in Asia and South Asia.
Following the Linnaean ladder, the Cannabis L. Ruderalis the latter, until recently, found only in Russia and other northern latitudes.
A fourth name, C. Americanus, appears to be an exercise in geographical hubris, with no scientific basis or separate existence in nature. Etymologists believe that the words "hemp" and "cannabis" are derived from a single Indo-European root that first entered the western world as the Greek kannabis, probably borrowed from the Scythian civilization from the steppes of Central Asia, where hemp itself may have first been used by humans.
Hemp probably originated in Central Asia and spread with human migration and trade. Shreds of hempen cloth and other hemp products have been found in archaeological sites in Asia, Africa, and Europe.
Certainly by the thirteenth century C. It is likely that in most places where hemp was used as a material, it was also used for its physical and psychoactive effects.
In the fifth century B. The qualities that made hemp commercially valuable were strength and durability.Technically speaking, legalizing drugs will reduce "crime" in the simple sense that drugs will no longer be illegal and selling drugs will no longer be a crime.
But, this does not eliminate the immorality of drug consumption and of the drug trade.
California NORML Report by Dale Gieringer, Ph.D. - Updated October Marijuana Legalization Could Yield California Taxpayers Over $ Billion Per Year. In total, Americans spend about $ billion on illegal drugs every year, according to a White House report. The estimate puts marijuana at about 40% of this, so the legal industry still only accounts for a fraction of the total.
Public opinion about legalizing marijuana, while little changed in the past few years, has undergone a dramatic long-term shift. A new survey finds that 53% favor the legal use of marijuana, while 44% are opposed.
As recently as , just 32% supported marijuana legalization, while nearly twice. WORLD WAR D is a hefty book of pages that serves as a platform for author Jeffrey Dhywood to illuminate his readers on why the use of drugs – whether psychoactive prescription drugs or cocaine or marijuana or heroin or opium or crystal meth, LSD etc – continues to be an ever increasing problem throughout the world.
And while many supporters of legalization say that marijuana is less dangerous than other drugs, 30% of opponents have the opposite view: They point to the dangers of marijuana, including the possibility of abuse and addiction.