June 15, 1937: Reefer Madness | Wretched Richard’s Almanac

Originally posted on Wretched Richard’s Almanac.

In 1937, Congress passed the Marihuana Tax Act which levied a tax of one dollar on anyone who dealt commercially in marijuana. The bill had been written using the slang term “marihuana” throughout, obscuring the fact that it covered the plant’s legitimate uses in medicine, where it was broadly known as cannabis and in the fiber industry as hemp. The Act did not itself criminalize their possession, but regulations and restrictions on the sale of cannabis as a drug had been around since the previous century. In effect, the bill made it impossible for anyone to deal with call it what you will in any form.

Conspiracy theorists (remember them?) maintained that business tycoons Andrew Mellon, Randolph Hearst, and the Du Pont family were behind passage of the Act as a way to reduce the size of the hemp industry. Hemp had become a very cheap…

via June 15, 1937: Reefer Madness | Wretched Richard’s Almanac.

2 thoughts on “June 15, 1937: Reefer Madness | Wretched Richard’s Almanac

  1. The history of the ‘Nation’s Favourite Drug’ has been a rocky one indeed. I am sure that legalisation of the pure product at the outset would have been less harmful than all the derivatives, and the associations with organised crime. And think of the tax revenues!
    Best wishes, Pete.

    Liked by 1 person

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