Happy 4th of July everyone! Today is the day that we Americans celebrate our independence from England. Cookouts, beer, fireworks, friends, family, and of course a little weed are all part of our modern celebrations.
But what involvement with cannabis did the Founding Fathers have? Was the Declaration of Independence really written on hemp paper? Did the Founding Fathers smoke cannabis? Did they grow it? Let’s look at each of these questions individually.
It has long been rumored in weed-loving circles that the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence were written on hemp paper. Is it true? Nope. Both documents were written on parchment, which is made from animal skin. However, it is possible that earlier versions of these documents were written on hemp paper, which was widely used at the time.
Well, what about the Founding Fathers? Did they grow and smoke weed? The answer to the first question is absolutely yes! George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Ben Franklin all grew hemp, among many others. But there is little evidence to suggest that any of them smoked it to get high.
In 1776 there was no stigma attached to smoking weed. And there was certainly no War on Drugs. I’m sure that any of the Founding Fathers would find the War on Drugs to be an absolute violation of the personal freedoms and the pursuit of happiness granted to each of us in the Declaration of Independence. And I’m even more sure that they’d find the prohibition of the cannabis plant to be downright absurd.
Fortunately, America (and the rest of the world) is slowly starting to realize that the War on Drugs has failed. Attitudes toward cannabis are changing. We now know that we’ve been lied to for the past 100 years or so. Cannabis is no longer seen as “the Devil’s Weed,” but rather the miracle plant that it is.
So, as we fire up the grill, the sky, and the bong this 4th of July, let’s not forget the principles that this country was founded on: That everyone has the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
Happy Independence Day!!!