R.I.P. Jack Herer

According to the Bible, Moses led his people from Egypt to the Promised Land, but he himself was not allowed to enter. Though this story might be a myth or fable, there is a tremendous analogy to the life of Jack Herer.

When Jack first learned about the many uses of the cannabis plant (aside from recreational or medical), he wrote a book about the industrial use of hemp and marijuana throughout history, The Emperor Wears No Clothes. He then went on a 37-year book tour to promote the book, but more importantly, to promote hemp and marijuana. He said that since hemp had been made illegal due to its association with marijuana, in order for it to become re-legalized, marijuana had to be re-legalized as well. He was a tremendous proponent of marijuana for both recreational and medical use.

Jack lived to see part of his dream come true. Hemp, which had been counted out by our governments and the industrial titans, has made a comeback and is going strong. Every year, acreage, number and variety of uses increase. From superior horse-bedding to the finest fibers that can be used for industrial weaving, hemp has made a comeback. It is just too bad that Jack didn’t live till November 3rd, you know, the day after the California election, the day we pass Tax and Regulate, which is now on the ballot. Then, for the first time in his life, he would have been able to smoke a big fat joint legally, not just as a patient, but as a human being on planet earth.

…You know what he would have said while smoking that joint? In his gruff voice, he’d cough and say, “we have to get Obama to make this legal again!”



  1. Hemp Man -Spread the her on

    Did I say mid ’90’s? Just looked it up and it was the ’80’s how time flies, sorry about that.

  2. Hemp Man -Spread the herb on

    I was fortunate enough to have shared a table with Mr. Herer during the first legal hemp fair in Toronto Canada in the mid ’90’s. At the insistence of another friend Marc Emery I was to drive an assortment of hemp items and books from Marc’s store in London ON to the fair where we sat and enjoyed the sunny day talking and selling our wares, of course we had copies of Ed’s books too! Jack was full of great stores and spoke fondly of the other people he had met while on the trail. I remember him joking with the police when two officers walked the line of tables, he had a good sense of humor. No arrests were made that day. One of my prized possessions is my autographed copy of “The Emperor” he actually thanks me for my efforts, what a humble great man who I am still in awe of. I’ll miss you Jack, go in peace.

  3. renney b. on

    jack herer is one of americas greatest marijuana freedomfighter, because of him i began to understand a lot of what hemp can do for us and the planet… he was a tireless crusader for the cannabis culture even to the day he fell gravely ill. we will miss you jack you and your gruff voice that forced us to listen intently to every word you say… so much wisdom, knowledge and understanding in the multipurpose of cannabis… the seeds that jack has sown will grow into the giant stalk to reach the pot of golden sensimellia flower with milk and honey to feed, cloth, heal, shelter, and fuel the whole world…rest in peace god father; and as bob marley sang,’ when man work is over man will fly away home…’

  4. ray christl on

    Vote for the LEGALIZATION.. then don’t pay the tax. OK join me in Cambodia and help get our Asian THC Ministry going. First dispensary soon. Bless you Hemperor

  5. lakua on

    I’m so sick and tired of people saying the legalization initiative in California is a bad thing because it allows local governments to tax cannabis. This is a HUGE step in the right direction. Would you rather have to pay a tax on cannabis or get a criminal conviction and possible jail time for possessing it? Think about the people who would have gone to jail but won’t because this passes.

    If you don’t want to pay taxes on cannabis, grow your own. The initiative allows up to 25 square feet of growing area, more than enough to supply yourself.

    I’m against taxes as much as anyone else, but I support this initiative 100%. This is about freedom from government oppression. Outgrow the government.

  6. Dan Peterson on

    Old Ed, really missed the boat on that one. Well said the morons in Cali that support this horrible bill are sadly misinformed.

  7. Dan Peterson on

    Jacks last speech before he had his heart attack he spoke strongly AGAINST taxing ganja. To paraphrase-‘I don’t want one fucking cent of my money going to the government that has imprisoned 20+ million of us for weed’…..For the black folks!? We have a 70+% black prison population!? (don’t worry whitey your welcome to be a victim of the drug war) !—Pres Uncle Tom aka Barry Setero, aka Barack Obama has increased drug war funding, increased Terror war funding, continued all of the Bush and pre Bush era unconstitutional executive orders, Patriot Act, ect… I have SUCH a hard time understanding how anyone can support this fraud?
    I believe Jack was very aware that we don’t need the Government to give us permission (legal) to smoke our God Given gift-we need them to take all “laws” (terrorism) concerning cannabis off the books (decriminalize) and stay out of our lives!
    Puppet Pres. Obama is another tool for the war profit bankers! Time to wake up folks.

  8. dan-o on

    Whatever he may have thought of the tax and regulate issue, he will be missed. Let’s honor his memory by continuing the fight for full legalization!

  9. Anonymous on


    skip to 4:10 to see “i don’t want to give the united states govt one dollar of taxes, i think they should go to jail for treat you and me, and twenty million people arrested for pot…” at this point he slows down rather abruptly, the beginning of the end.

    Jack didn’t want to live in a world where tax money from marijuana goes directly towards keeping green prisoners locked up, which is what California will become if the voter’s are naive enough to pass Mr. Lee’s manifesto.

  10. Anonymous on

    have you seen the video of jack getting the stroke that would eventually kill him?

    he was so enraged about “tax&regulate” his body couldn’t even handle it, it’s highly doubtful that he’d be at all pleased with what’s happening in California.