Ron Paul Hopes Hemp History Week Will Reap More Co-sponsors for Legalization Bill

Jack Herer, “the self-described Emperor of Hemp”, passed away nearly a month ago, but that doesn’t mean his dream died with him.

Roll Call reports, “Hemp History Week might not earn anyone time off work, but Rep. Ron Paul still thinks it’s worth celebrating.”

The Texas Republican and erstwhile presidential candidate on Thursday submitted a statement to the Congressional Record recognizing next week, May 17-23, as Hemp History Week and urging his colleagues to pass legislation legalizing hemp farming. In the statement, which hemp advocates are touting as a big endorsement for their cause, Paul notes that Thomas Jefferson and George Washington both grew the leafy crop.

Paul’s arguments focused on the potential economic effect of legalizing hemp — probably making for a stronger case than the beauty of those hemp necklaces found on the necks of half the attendees of any given Widespread Panic concert. “Unfortunately, because of a federal policy that does not distinguish between growing industrial hemp and growing marijuana, all hemp products and materials must be imported,” Paul said. “The result is high prices, outsourced jobs, and lost opportunities for American manufacturing.”

A post at details activists’ plans for the week: “A joint project of Vote Hemp and the Hemp Industries Association, Hemp History Week is looking for patriotic Americans to participate in and attend events in their state as part of a national grassroots, media and public education campaign.”

Vote Hemp is a national, single-issue, non-profit advocacy group founded in 2000 by members of the hemp industry to remove barriers to industrial hemp farming in the U.S. through education, legislation and advocacy. We work to build grassroots support for hemp through voter education, registration and mobilization, as well as defend against any new laws, regulations or policies that would prohibit or restrict hemp trade.

Industrial hemp is the non-psychoactive, low-THC, oilseed and fiber varieties of the Cannabis sativa plant. Hemp has absolutely no use as a recreational drug.

The groups “hope to collect at least 50,000 signed post cards urging President Barack Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder to end the status quo and let farmers grow versatile and profitable industrial hemp.”

“Madam Speaker, I rise to speak about Hemp History Week,” Paul said last week on the floor. “To celebrate the American heritage of growing industrial hemp, the Hemp Industries Association, Vote Hemp, several American manufacturers, and allied companies and organizations have declared May 17 to May 23 to be Hemp History Week. Throughout the week, people will recognize America’s legacy of industrial hemp farming and call for reinstating respect for farmers’ basic right to grow industrial hemp.”

Industrial hemp was legally grown throughout our country for many years. In fact, George Washington and Thomas Jefferson grew industrial hemp and used it to make cloth. During World War II, the federal government encouraged American farmers to grow hemp to help the war effort.

Despite industrial hemp farming being an important part of American history, the federal government has banned cultivation of this crop. In every other industrialized country, industrial hemp, defined to contain less than 0.3 percent THC–the psychoactive chemical found in marijuana, may be legally grown. Nobody can be psychologically affected by consuming industrial hemp. Unfortunately, because of a federal policy that does not distinguish between growing industrial hemp and growing marijuana, all hemp products and materials must be imported. The result is high prices, outsourced jobs, and lost opportunities for American manufacturing.

Reintroducing industrial hemp farming in the United States would bring jobs to communities struggling in today’s economy, provide American farmers with another crop alternative, and encourage the development of hemp processing factories near American hemp farming.

Paul noted that he introduced his Industrial Hemp Farming Act (HR 1866) [To amend the Controlled Substances Act to exclude industrial hemp from the definition of marihuana, and for other purposes.], “five years ago to end the federal government’s ban on American farmers growing industrial hemp.”

The bill currently has 21 cosponsors:

Tammy Baldwin [D-WI2]
Earl Blumenauer [D-OR3]
John Campbell [R-CA48]
William Clay [D-MO1]
Steve Cohen [D-TN9]
Peter DeFazio [D-OR4]
Sam Farr [D-CA17]
Barney Frank [D-MA4]
Raul Grijalva [D-AZ7]
Maurice Hinchey [D-NY22]
Michael Honda [D-CA15]
Dennis Kucinich [D-OH10]
Tom McClintock [R-CA4]
James McDermott [D-WA7]
George Miller [D-CA7]
Jared Polis [D-CO2]
Dennis Rehberg [R-MT]
Dana Rohrabacher [R-CA46]
Janice Schakowsky [D-IL9]
Fortney Stark [D-CA13]
Lynn Woolsey [D-CA6]

Last April, RAW STORY’s Stephen Webster reported, “The legislation, if passed by the House and Senate, would amend the Controlled Substances act and overturn a portion of the 1937 Marihuana Tax Act which decimated America’s industrial hemp industry by simply lumping the plant in with its high-inducing counterpart, marijuana.”

Jack Herer, as the LA Times noted last month, “was a longtime marijuana activist and the author of the landmark book ‘The Emperor Wears No Clothes: The Authoritative Historical Record of Cannabis and the Conspiracy Against Marijuana.'” He passed away on April 15, at the age of 70, still ill “[f]ollowing a heart attack he experienced after leaving the Hempstalk festival stage in Portland last fall.”


– Article from Raw Story on May 11, 2010.



  1. Saul on

    End the Capitalislamic JIHAD!

    Hemp was only originally banned in the 1930s because a lying capitalist named William Randolph Hearst BRIBED CONGRESS to pretend it caused ‘reefer madness!’

    WHY did he bribe Congress? Simply because: hemp is a weed which will grow in gravel and becomes a tree within a year – a tree which was then used to make newsprint – and since he had already achieved vertical economic intergration by buying up and cutting down forrests for his own pulp and paper mills to make his own newsprint for his own newspapers, and so the hemp growers were a majorly inconvenient, much cheaper rival to his plans!

    So much for the American government being all for the ‘free market'(!)

    Not to mention: reverting to hemp will STOP the clear-cutting of forrests for paper products, and so will almost IMMEDIATELY STOP GLOBAL WARMING!

    Further, today’s attitude towards ‘alternate fuels’ to oil, runs immediately to ethanol, which is corn-based, and therefore cuts into the options of the farmers who grow corn as food to feed poor people; if they switch it to ethanol, people might starve! And ehtanol gasoline is a very inefficient fuel as well!

    Worst of all, even Obama’s government claims that OIL is THE “necessary” ingredient in all plastics – in polyester for clothes, for computer parts, even for paper and ink; pretty-much for EVERYTHING all our Western manufacturers produce!


    Even back in 1941, Hearst’s rival entrepreneur, Henry Ford, made a PLASTIC CAR – of which even the plastic windshield was strong enough to withstand sledge-hammer blows FROM HEMP!

    (You can still see footage of it here):



    If returning Iraq War soldiers want to get into law enforcement and join the local police departments, AND do something REAL for their country, then they should all support the RE-Legalizing of HEMP!

    Right now, the psychotically regressive muslim countries have only ONE thing that brings them any money – and that’s the OIL, free in the ground!

    This ‘black gold’ natural resource is their ONLY national ‘product’!

    Without it, they could not finance their endless Globalization Jihad!

    They couldn’t afford the weapons Uncle Scam sells them to use against us!

    Re-legalizing the mighty Hemp IS The #1 Greenest Solution to ALL our problems!


  2. highcrimes on

    I am waiting for the same type of assault on myself from the local police, I have to hide in my house most of the time, I can’t even go into my home town anymore where I was born, it will only get worse as the Iraq vets start filling up the police departments. I live in Pennsylvania, the Republican sister state of Florida. I need help to get out of America too, but what can I do? My back is also wrecked, I can’t hardly work–tho with the right medical pot I could,,,:/ I feel your pain, I hope the nazi’s will let you be.

    [email protected] , veohblows on youtube, contact me maybe we can work together??

  3. DiamondInDaRuff on

    I think Ron Paul should be a DEMOCRAT if he REALLY supports any kind of legalization….and thanks for continually supporting the Republican ticket here Ron Paul…..

  4. DiamondInDaRuff on

    12 long years of REPUBLICAN cannabis prohibition here in Florida Ron Paul….and this list of sponsors ; can you see what I see? do you notice that this list is PRIMARILY made up of DEMOCRATS……from a former Republican…Join the Democrats to save the Florida people….after 12 years of denying people jobs, vocational rehabilation, assistance of every kind,telling people they are garbage, telling people they should kill themselves, 12 years of drug raids, people getting shot, 12 years not 12 days…what is this a new Republican movement….oh and let us not forget, we went from 100 plants to a trafficking charge to 25 plants…thanks Charlie..he wants to go to the Senate…hahahahahahahah…….so is this some kind of last ditch effort for Republicans to save themselves…..12 years of throwing people in jail, ruining their lives, destroying their families,12 yeras of fucking hell, not to mentiono our tourist base is gone here. I am told Florida sucks by tourists, and so after asking nicely for 12 years for change,hahahahahahah….. to win an election, this is the new tactic now….now you need us??????? wasn’t it the Republicans that shut down the Canadian border??? too much pot coming in from Canada…..don’t tell me Ron Paul, that you all feel sorry for us all of a sudden….just as the destructive Republican disease is making its way to Broward are we going to go way out and start supporting this…..don’t forget we brought in the military to finish the job,and what was that, oh yea, that lady in Broward who was runniong the pill mill and was shot to death….pow pow pow pow pow pow…the 81 year old who was arrested for selling pot…pow pow pow pow pow…the chick in Boca don’t forget me….now…don’t forget….let’s see…cops were called out for two other neighbors who were fighting over a bad cocaine deal…let’s see there was nothing the cops could do, except arrest innocent bystander Kathy for a 12 inch baby pot plant that was 30 days old that was on the side of my house in some bushes…so the neighbors say hey she got a pot plant…who went to jail after she came home with groceries…it wasn’t the two neighbors whose fight brought the police out…of course was me, nice little drug raid, landed the drug raid people a little baby pot plant, thats it….Republicans…let us see what just happened here on jan. 26, 2010…again…let us pray that Kathy lives through this police assault…she is pumping morphin in her body 24 hours a day since the assault by an officer…for walking across her neighborhood street…just after being able to walk a mere two months after a corrective back surgery, was she beat up….went from 99.9999999% drug free to pumping almost 120 mg a day of morphin for the damage that was done…for walking across the street…I am not a pill pusher, not even a cannabis pusher, i don’t even steal, don’t even speed on the streets, see I make sure I am a good person, good citizen, but with the way they do things here the Republicans…thats’ what it is isn’t it…I get beat up because I WON’t DO THOSE THINGS….ooooooohhhhhhh…..that’s the problem, I won’t get involved and sell my self to the devil…..I get it now…..that explains the attempt of rape by the new mexican neighbor of a few years now….that explains the drug dealer trying to run my kids and I over, that explains the property damages, that explains alot….If you read this, my house is for sale, GET ME THE FUCK OUT OF HERE…get my kids out of here…..We live in Boca Raton florida…get us out of here please!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  5. Anonymous on

    this is a breakthrough for the movement and honours the memory of jack herer… great work ron paul.

  6. ray christl THC MINISTRY Cambo on

    While I understand the reasons to separate the Hemp from Marijuana(the M word).We must teach that the N-WORD and the M-WORD are the same.This for journalists on down will emote truth and the elightenment will begin. The M-WORD is our BODHI TREE,we been eating one hemp seed a day for 70 years.May 22 Meta House phnom penh film- arts centre…FREE MARC. July 4th USA Embassy vigil-light 5am til HIGH NOON. Pastor Ray [email protected] We love CC FAMILY as we love all.